From Library Journal
Fowler (Classical Southern Cooking, LJ 11/15/95) now turns to what he calls "the soul" of Southern cooking: fruits and vegetables (and he doesn't mean the cliche of overcooked green beans). An introductory chapter covers equipment, techniques, and ingredients, including pantry items like Pepper Vinegar; then there's a chapter of "go-withs" such as Corn Bread and another of sauces. The fruit and vegetable recipes are organized by season and range from Fowler's family favorites and other classics, including "rediscoveries" from old cookbooks, to Creole specialties to contemporary dishes, some from Southern chefs. Fowler doesn't stint on cream and butter (that's what makes some of these so good), but he does include recipe notes for those who feel they must. With dozens of delicious recipes and an entertaining but knowledgeable text, this is recommended for most collections.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Although everyone recognizes the importance of fruits in the South's cooking, especially as reflected in the region's rich, sweet desserts, the role of vegetables in southern cooking is less appreciated. Fowler has rectified that oversight with a substantive contribution to the record of American cooking. Fowler's southern vegetables are not just messes of greens stewed in "pot likker." He prefers gussied-up grits baked with lots of pungent pecorino romano cheese. His custard pie tilts to the exotic when perfumed with fresh mangoes. Sweet-potato pie evolves into rich sweet-potato ice cream studded with bits of pecan pralines. Most unusual is Fowler's mayonnaise-enriched tomato sorbet served in avocado halves. This inventive updating of traditional southern cooking may strike some as surrender to alien Yankee tastes, but Fowler succeeds in breathing new life into America's best regional cuisine. Mark Knoblauch