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LaBelle Cuisine: Recipes to Sing About Hardcover – April 6, 1999

4.7 out of 5 stars 175 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

"From the time I was a little girl, I knew there were two things in this world I wanted to do: sing and cook." So says singer-diva Patti LaBelle, whose first cookbook, LaBelle Cuisine, confirms her passion for good food and her skill at producing it. A truly devoted cook (she travels with pans and hot-sauce stashes), LaBelle offers more than 100 recipes in the great Southern soul-food tradition--homey dishes such as Say-My-Name Smothered Chicken and Aunt Hattie's Scrumptious Sweet Potato Bread. LaBelle fans and those seeking simple yet savory fare for everyday and casual entertaining will relish the book.

In chapters including "Sensational Salads," "Soups and Sandwiches," "Perfect Poultry," and "To-Die-For Desserts and Bread," LaBelle weaves easy-to-do recipes with warm food reminiscences. Whether describing a backstage barbecue resulting in a building-wide fire alert, her undying love of canned sardines, or the soulful Sunday dinners of her youth, LaBelle's voice is, as ever, memorably her own. The recipes, many of which include tips called Patti's Pointers, represent not only a personal culinary heritage, but also a kind of cooking in danger of dissolution. LaBelle's Over-the-Rainbow Macaroni and Cheese, among other recipes, should remind readers that that heritage is alive, well, and in very good hands. --Arthur Boehm

From Publishers Weekly

"From the time I was a little girl," says LaBelle, "I knew there were two things in this world I was born to do: sing and cook." Admirers of LaBelle's Grammy-winning vocal style are sure to find her Southern dishes just as dynamic. Starting with such chapters as Sensational Salads, Soups, and Sandwiches, she cooks and talks her way through Meat, Poultry and Seafood entr?es, Fabulous Fixin's and To-Die-For Desserts and Breads. Her famous jalape?o-spiked Potato Salad, Pass-It-On Pot Roast, Screamin' Mean Greens and Wicked Peach Cobbler make colorful appearances, along with practical cooking tips and plenty of exuberant attitude. This is high-style down-home cooking, sophisticated, flavorful, mostly calorie-laden and generally irresistible; the fact that Patti has fixed her Luscious Liver and Onions and Over the Rainbow Macaroni and Cheese for the likes of Mick Jagger, Oprah and Elton John just adds to the fun. LaBelle (author of the bestselling autobiography Don't Block the Blessings) believes in cooking for pleasure and therapy: as she says, "Usually when people are stressed out they want a pill, but honey, give me a pot!" Readers will want one, too, by the end of this book, for LaBelle's enthusiasm is infectious. 15-city author tour.
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Clarkson Potter; 1 edition (April 6, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0767903145
  • ISBN-13: 978-0767903141
  • Product Dimensions: 7.7 x 0.9 x 9.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (175 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #94,264 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By A Customer on February 18, 2000
Format: Hardcover
I was taught how to cook by numerous relatives(from Georgia, Virginia and New Jersey) and I have had people to tell me that I could throw down with some cooking; but after trying some of Patti's recipes, people were telling me that I need to be a professional caterer! I own tons of recipe books, but this one lives up to Ms. Labelles' reputation as an excellent cook. I cooked for 18 people this christmas; not only did every one on her recipes I tried score a hit: (String beans a labelle, good and cheap pot roast, peach cobbler, over the rainbow macaroni and cheese); Patti enhanced my cooking, just by suggesting everyday ingredients rather than buying some outrageously exotic spices and seasonings. One word of caution, use only some of these recipes for special occasions, cause if you eat this on the regular, you will be on this website looking for a Tae-Bo tape afterwards (cause I'm looking for one now). Here's to REAL SOUL FOOD! THANKS PATTI! :)
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I bought this book off of Amazon, never having seen it in the stores. What a pleasant surprise! I'd expected another book of soul-food, Southern cooking (which is what I was looking for). Ms. LaBelle's book has plenty of down-home-type recipies familiar to those of us in the South, such as her pot roast and her Southern fried chicken, but also has recipes that reflect a wider, more modern cooking trend, such as Caribbean fish steaks and shrimp fried rice. Her Macaroni and Cheese recipe is to die for!
Unlike so many other 'celebrity' cookbooks, the recipes here are well-written and easy to follow. I've cooked a couple of dozen recipes here, and all have worked as published.
This cookbook can be a terrific introduction to Southern cooking as well as an illustrated biography of its author. I've been a fan of LaBelle for many years and was delighted to read her autobiographical segments. This book is a great blend of cookbook and memoirs, and can be enjoyable even if only for reading!
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Format: Hardcover
I finally broke down and got this book, after repeatedly hearing everybody talk about how great the recipies were. THEY DIDN'T LIE!! In commemoration of Black History Month, I decided to throw a Sunday dinner, inviting my mom, grandmother and other family members over. I can cook, but never cooked a Soul Food Dinner. Needless to say, the invitees were skeptical, but supportive. I made the Over the Rainbow Mac & Cheese, Screamin' Mean Greens, Sumptous & Simple Fried Chicken, and for dessert, Norma's Black Bottom Sweet Potato Pie. EVERYTHING TURNED OUT GREAT!! My Grandmother & Mama were so proud. The only thing left was one chicken wing, and that was because everyone was too full and too ashamed to take it!!! I am now going to order Patti's "Lite" cooking book, because if I continue to cook and eat like this, I ain't gonna make it!! This is the only cook book I ever bought that works!! I recommend this book to everyone!!
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Format: Hardcover
My daughter gave me this book last christmas because she knows that I love Patti and my family loves my cookin. This Thanksgiving I decided to try Patti's Over the Rainbow Macaroni & Cheese and it was SLAMMIN! Everyone loved it. Thanks... Patti!
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Format: Hardcover
I bought the book because I'm a fan of Patti LaBelle's music and her life stories (from her autobiography. Now, I'm a fan of her food!
For an Irish-American woman in Michigan like me to be able to make Macaroni and Cheese and Smothered Chicken alone was worth ten times the price of this book. My Italian husband who grew up in New York eating out-of-this-world soul food from neighborhood restaurants and cooks was amazed. He was asking for thirds!
I can't wait to try out more recipes. Be warned, many of these recipes are traditional soul-food recipes, i.e., high in fat/cholesterol/calories. You can, however, use substitute ingredients to lower the sin quotient. You only live once, so as long as you don't eat like this everyday, try the recipes in their original form - you'll love the food!!
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By A Customer on January 24, 2000
Format: Hardcover
THIS IS ONE OF THE BEST COOKBOOKS I HAVE EVER PURCHASED. IT HAS SOMETHING IN IT FOR EVERYONE. I HAVE PURCHASED AT LEAST 12 OF THESE BOOKS FOR OTHER PEOPLE AFTER THEY READ MINE. PATTI REALLY KNOWS HER WAY AROUND THE KITCHEN. I CAN NOT GET ENOUGH OF HER RUM CAKE OR MEATLOAF, THEY ARE GREAT RECIPES. EVERY SERIOUS COOK WHO LOVES GOOD FOOD SHOULD BUY THIS BOOK!
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Format: Hardcover
I'm a great cook but I learned by using cookbooks. I collect cookbooks that assemble classic and easy recipes for dishes like macaroni & cheese, potato salad, greens, etc. I collect cookbooks to pass on to generations to come. Patti's cookbook is definitely in that collection.
I had never made potato salad before Patti. My fiance LOVED it and he doesn't eat his MOTHER'S potato salad! Thank you Patti.
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Format: Hardcover
I ordered this book after hearing about how great it was, especially the macaroni and cheese from a co-worker. I was delighted when I found the recipes to be easy to follow and used many ingredients that I already had in my cupboard. I have never been much of a cook and have recently been trying new and different meals. This book was perfect!
The green bean recipe is simple, yet absolutely delicious. Loved the fried corn too! The macaroni and cheese was to die for! Absolutely awesome!!! I'll be cooking salmon next week and can't wait. My biggest challenge will be the Wicked Peach Cobbler, but I know it will also be a winner. I have thoroughly enjoyed this cookbook and highly, highly recommend it. You won't be sorry. Even if you're a pro, you may find some of these simple recipes exciting to eat. Bon apetit!
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