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Kentucky Sweets: Bourbon Balls, Spoonbread & Mile High Pie (American Palate) Paperback – January 28, 2014

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Kentucky Sweets: Bourbon Balls, Spoonbread & Mile High Pie (American Palate) + Bourbon Desserts + The Kentucky Bourbon Cookbook
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Product Details

  • Series: American Palate
  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: The History Press (January 28, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1626193770
  • ISBN-13: 978-1626193772
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #307,339 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"Sarah C. Baird's new book should come with a warning label: May cause fits of dessert cravings and Bluegrass State pride. In Kentucky Sweets: Bourbon Balls, Spoonbread and Mile High Pie, the Richmond native blends cultural narrative, cooking tips and interviews with a delectable collection of more than 60 recipes and whisks in generous dollops of humor to create one thoroughly delicious read.. [sic] One part history book, one part cookbook and one part practical culinary guide, Kentucky Sweets is 100-percent foodie fun." -- Kim Butterweck, Kentucky Monthly

"Inspired by her Bluegrass State upbringing and the state's rich heritage...Kentucky Sweets has recipes from apple butter and apple stack cake to chocolate gravy and bourbon balls. You'll also read about traditions like Appalachian weddings and interviews with experts like Rose Ann Stacy..." -- Southern Living

"...Baird knows her stuff. It's not just about recipes, but about the connection between culture and cuisine. Kentucky Sweets affords a lovely glimpse into a culture that's Southern, yet ruggedly American." -- Southern Food and Beverage Museum Magazine

"Sarah Baird wants you to know that Kentucky cuisine is more than just mint juleps and burgoo...For Kentucky Sweets, her dessert-focused new cookbook, she mined communities across the Bluegrass State for lesser-known favorites such as hickory brittle and sorghum taffy to include alongside the obligatory bourbon balls and apple stack cake.

...Baird has a knack for colorful Q&As and factoids...And as a lifelong cook, she also has plenty of hard-earned lessons to impart in the lists of tips and tricks that accompany many of her recipes." -- Garden and Gun

"Written by Kentucky native Sarah Baird, a food writer and culinary anthropologist, Kentucky Sweets is a fantastic read full of fun facts, tips, and scrumptious recipes...Baird is impressive in her historical knowledge. She is an authority on Kentucky's sweets, yet she writes in such a way that I feel like I'm talking to a friend as I read.

This little cookbook would be a perfect gift for anyone you know who loves history, baking, or both. Highly recommended in every way..." -- Chef Madeleine Dee, Arts Louisville

"Kentucky is known for many things, but one that often gets left in the dust is our long and unique baking history. Sarah Baird chronicles the history...(complete with full recipes) in her recently published book, "Kentucky Sweets."

From stack cakes -- which originated at Appalachian weddings, where each guest brought a layer of cake for the bride and groom -- to the famous bourbon balls we love, Baird has a combined passion for culture and cuisine, along with a wish to enrich our dining experiences by adding this background knowledge to these dishes." -- LEO Weekly

"The science and history of lots of luscious Southern classics -- great fun to read, and the recipes are as easy as sliding off a greasy log backward. As much a lesson about being Southern as eating Southern, this delightful book will be a welcome trip down memory lane for many, and a great introduction to others. Utterly charming.

About the Author

Sarah C. Baird is a Kentucky-native food and drink writer based in New Orleans, La., where she serves as the restaurant critic and food writer for New Orleans' alt-weekly, The Gambit. Her writing has appeared in PUNCH, Serious Eats, Long Reads, Epicurious, Bitter Southerner, NPR, CNN's Eatocracy, Vice: Munchies and beyond.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Peony Princess on February 7, 2014
Format: Paperback
Sarah Baird's new book on the timeless subject of Kentucky food and drink emphasizes sweets, but not exclusively so. In fact, this book's 190 packed pages deliver history, cocktail recipes, savvy cooking tips, tightly edited interviews with producers, equipment advice, and event guidance for cake walks and sorghum taffy pulls.

Even with all the extras, the recipes themselves hold center stage. They gleam, actually, with the look of excellent curation and tautly written instructions. They depend on fine and true ingredients like lard for pie crusts, butter and whole milk for that Kentucky wonder, spoonbread. Even more laudable: for the Modjeska recipe, which begins with a neat one page history of this Kentucky sweet-on-sweet candy, Baird assumes we will step up for the still unusual (but not especially risky) process of making marshmallows from scratch, and then make caramel from scratch. And we will; we certainly will.

Most important to me: the book begins with hickory nuts, a Kentucky treasure waiting to be discovered and enjoyed by more than a few hardy Kentucky insiders, and ends with sorghum, a splendid, one-ingredient artisanal sweet syrup any Kentucky farmer can grow and process within her own farm's boundaries. National chefs are beginning to discover sorghum, which savvy Kentucky farmers and families have cherished since its introduction to the USA more than 150 years ago.

Sorghum and hickory nuts—along with black walnuts, pawpaws, American persimmons, and wild blackberries, all of which Baird also showcases—constitute part of Kentucky's heritage as well as its future. These are freedom foods of the highest order, underscoring Kentucky's abundant potential to grow our own foods and feed our own people.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By D on October 26, 2014
Format: Paperback
I picked this up at SFA14. What a pleasant surprise. This is one of the more thoughtful and fun additions to the History Press lineup. The illustrations are a nice touch. I certainly appreciate a cookbook with more than recipes, so I'm enjoying the storytelling and interviews. The author takes you on an intimate guided tour of the state, and it's quite fun.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Saygeronimo on February 11, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
While it is certainly true that this delightful new book is chocked-full of tempting recipes, it is so much more than just your average cookbook. The author has skillfully and creatively not only given the reader descriptive recipes for, yes, delicious Kentucky Sweets but has also given us a visually stunning treat for the eyes with beautifully-staged photographs of the final products and extraordinarily clever illustrations provided by her talented collaborator (my favorite being lemon wedges scaling the heights of a mile-high lemon meringue pie!). To top it off, the author has provided us extra added attractions including Kentucky-inspired libations; fascinating interviews with Kentuckians linked to the state's culinary history; tips and tricks on perfecting your own Kentucky sweet and, my personal favorite, how to host a cakewalk. This would be a lovely addition to any kitchen's collection.
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Josie on October 23, 2014
Format: Paperback
It was awfully nice of the author's family to write some kind reviews on this book, but it's difficult to agree with them. Rather than a well put together narrative and time-honored recipes, you get some posturing from a self-appointed "expert" and some old recipes that are published all over the web.

With so many quality food bloggers out there, I can hardly justify forking over the cash for this to take up space in my kitchen.
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