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25 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Family-oriented; not just Texas-oriented: Very comforting!
And you surely don't need to be from Texas to make good--great--use of these recipes! Lisa Fain makes a point of telling family stories in the process of relating recipes and where they came from and how they were developed. It makes the whole book cozy, warm and friendly.

Throughout, there is great writing, gracious, welcoming and companionable. And, in...
Published 8 months ago by I Do the Speed Limit

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Tex-Mex Cookbook
The Homesick Texan's Family Table: Lone Star Cooking From My Kitchen To Yours by Lisa Fain is a beautiful hardcover Tex-Mex cookbook. Lisa Fain is a Texas native who's been transplanted to New York and I understand she's a popular food blogger; however, I've never read her blog. I am a cookbook collector and was excited to add a Tex-Mex cookbook to my collection as it's a...
Published 3 months ago by Denise McFarland


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25 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Family-oriented; not just Texas-oriented: Very comforting!, April 4, 2014
This review is from: The Homesick Texan's Family Table: Lone Star Cooking from My Kitchen to Yours (Hardcover)
And you surely don't need to be from Texas to make good--great--use of these recipes! Lisa Fain makes a point of telling family stories in the process of relating recipes and where they came from and how they were developed. It makes the whole book cozy, warm and friendly.

Throughout, there is great writing, gracious, welcoming and companionable. And, in addition to a picture of most all finished recipes, she hit on the perfect Texas landscape photographs, too: Just the right ones to bring on great memories. The book is filled with pictures.

In the Breakfast and Brunch section, she's got a recipe for home-made bacon and molasses sausage; a savory-sweet apple and pepper Dutch Baby pancake; (I could have thought of that, liking Dutch Baby "pancakes" as we do at our house. Just make it savory instead of sweet.); a variety of flour tortillas and biscuits, and a recipe for the beloved Texas Czech sausage kolache.

Her Starters and Snacks chapter includes a recipe for another beloved food: Pimento cheese, this one with jalapenos. If you are not into pimento cheese, there is a cheese ball with bacon and jalapenos. We have many pecan trees on our property, and her recipe for Orange-Cinnamon Candied Pecans is now a permanent resident of my "Pecans" file folder.

Some of her recipes are just Texas interpretations and twists on family favorites from all over the country, (roasted pumpkin seeds, nachos, spiced oyster crackers, fajitas, pecan pie, etc., as examples), but they are still nice additions to this cook book.

There are 22 salad and side recipes, and I zoned in on several that have turned out to be doggone good keepers: The German Potato and Green Bean Salad; a sauerkraut salad with sweet and hot pickles, salami, onion and caraway seed; an updated (better than my updated) 5-cup salad, also known as Ambrosia Salad; and a chile applesauce (Oh, that gets my creative juices flowing! Just think of the possibilities! And so easy to stew apples!).

The Chilis, Soups, and Stews chapter is a well-rounded offering: All Texans have a recipe for venison chili (at least I think we all do--at least we all should!) and this book includes one if you've missed out. I also like the Pea and Chorizo Soup, the Buttermilk Potato Soup, Chipotle Chicken and Dumplings, and a superb Mexican Lime Soup (makes my mouth water just typing the words). The Southeast Texas Gumbo is not much--if any--different from Mississippi or Louisiana gumbos.

The "Main Event" chapter is full of great food: Michelada Flank Steak Tortas; "Cochinita Pibil", which is a pulled pork from Mexico; an oh-so-good Chicken Spaghetti; some great enchilada recipes (the stacked Jalapeno-chees enchiladas are outstanding). There is even a recipe for chicken tamales, Pollo Asado (grilled, marinated whole chicken), beer-battered catfish, and a shrimp boil.

The book includes a wide assortment of comforting sweets: Pies, brownies, cookies, cakes, ice cream, divinity (What? Divinity in humid Texas? Yep!)

Worth a million bucks is the last chapter "Accompaniements": Salsas, pickles, relish, jams, and a Texas hot sauce. If you like to pickle, you really should try the Chipotle Pickled Carrots.

There is a one-page measurement conversion chart and a five page index. Page layout and type style and size are user-friendly and easy on the eyes. Ingredient lists are not too long, instructions and methods are not intricate. The recipes are not day-long affairs.

*I received a temporary download of this book from the publisher, months in advance of its release to the public. So, my thoughts and opinions on this cookbook have been well-thought out. I've tried many of the recipes in this book, and along with many, many people who are fans of Lisa Fain's first book, I agree that these recipes are accurate and doable. It is a great compilation of recipes!
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another winner, April 2, 2014
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This review is from: The Homesick Texan's Family Table: Lone Star Cooking from My Kitchen to Yours (Hardcover)
Few cookbooks have me using up multiple pads of little sticky notes to flag recipes I can't wait to try. The first Homesick Texan cookbook was one of those few, and now the second one is the same. The photography is beautiful and the recipes run the full spectrum of diverse Lone Star cooking.
This cookbook a good balance between showcasing the classics you crave and offering a little twist to add a new dimension. The stories that accompany each chapter and recipe make homesick Texans truly miss home, but they also inspire the reader to make memories around the table today with those you care about. Kudos on another triumph, Lisa Fain.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Must-Have Cookbook, April 6, 2014
This review is from: The Homesick Texan's Family Table: Lone Star Cooking from My Kitchen to Yours (Hardcover)
A fantastic follow-up to the first, Fain has put together a phenomenal book. A litany of family-forcused recipes fill out this volume - expect cheese, chiles, tomatillos, tortillas, and plenty of fresh beans as ways to bring together all generations of your crew. A gruyere and cranberry scone already has proven that this book will quickly become stained and dog-eared with use. Meanwhile, my husband is coating steak and pork with a heady chipotle-coffee rub and baked black beans simmer away.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lisa Fain did it again!, May 4, 2014
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This review is from: The Homesick Texan's Family Table: Lone Star Cooking from My Kitchen to Yours (Hardcover)
I was hesitant to purchase this cookbook because I was so afraid to be disappointed....her first Homesick Texan cookbook was so amazing that I thought my expectations would be too high. After all, the sequel is never as good as the original....but I'm happy to admit that I was wrong!
I noticed one reviewer said that her recipes aren't original...I disagree...they are original because Texas is the only place where you can get the multitude of foods that are presented in this book. Another reviewer said that the breakfast section is typical American recipes...not sure what state that reviewer lives in but Lisa's breakfast are not typical American...they are Texan! I moved out of state 6 months ago and miss Texas meals so much. It's amazing how quickly I began to forget some of my favorite foods because they just aren't served in restaurants here.
Potatoe and chorizo breakfast tacos, jalapeño corn sticks, sausage and pepper breakfast casserole. Peach salsa, sausage and shrimp jambalaya, ancho chile shrimp quesadillas, beer-battered fish tacos, pollo as ado, chicken spaghetti, steak fingers with jalapeño creamed gravy....the list goes on and on. These are common foods that texans can order at almost any restaurant but most of us don't have the recipes.
I completely respect others opinions...don't get me wrong...living outside of Texas for the last 6 months; knowing that I can't just hop in my car and drive to the closest hole-in-the-wall for some good old fashioned Texan comfort food makes me appreciate this book even more. If you want the recipes to your favorite Texas foods...especially if your homesick like me...dont hesitate to buy this cookbook...you will have no regrets:)
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best of Texas Cusine Made Easy, April 24, 2014
This review is from: The Homesick Texan's Family Table: Lone Star Cooking from My Kitchen to Yours (Hardcover)
Ms Fain is a excellent writer and her cooking skills are off the charts. She has somehow managed to put together a collection of Texas recipes that span the scale from very traditional to the latest trends in Texas cusine. Some of these dishes could have been on my grandmother's table, but some are new and trendy. One thing for sure, everything from her collection that I have tried has turned out very well. My family and friends keep wanting to know where these dishes come from. Sometimes I tell them, sometimes I just say I made it up. I am sure that Lisa will not mind if I occasionally take the credit. Bottom line if you like real Texas cooking and want a wide variety, buy this book.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Tex-Mex Cookbook, September 15, 2014
This review is from: The Homesick Texan's Family Table: Lone Star Cooking from My Kitchen to Yours (Hardcover)
The Homesick Texan's Family Table: Lone Star Cooking From My Kitchen To Yours by Lisa Fain is a beautiful hardcover Tex-Mex cookbook. Lisa Fain is a Texas native who's been transplanted to New York and I understand she's a popular food blogger; however, I've never read her blog. I am a cookbook collector and was excited to add a Tex-Mex cookbook to my collection as it's a category I don't have yet and I love Mexican-American food. I've never been to Texas so I wasn't sure exactly what to expect, but I did have a general idea. This book is chock full of stories of Lisa growing up in Texas. I loved reading about her family and anecdotes about her grandmother and mother's cooking. This was one of my favorite parts of the cookbook. Sections included are Breakfast and Breads; Starters and Snacks; Salads and Sides; Chilis, Soups, and Stews; The Main Event; Sweets; and Accompaniments. It also includes an introduction with explanations about the recipes, an overview of different types of chiles, a Resource Guide, and Measurement Conversion Charts.

I enjoyed the stories and pictures in this book. Lisa apparently did all the photography for the book herself, so that was a nice touch. I felt like there weren't quite enough pictures of the recipes for me, though. I prefer cookbooks that show all or nearly all of the recipes so I can see the end result before I try the recipe. I also felt like a lot of the recipes weren't really traditional Tex-Mex recipes, but rather a modern/healthier/trendier spin on them. Honestly, I'd prefer the old fashioned original recipes. For example, she mentions that her grandmother's old recipe for Chicken Spaghetti uses cream soup, but she rewrote the recipe and uses a homemade cheese sauce - I'd prefer to see the original recipe, or a comparison of the original next to the new. Also, some of the recipes were downright unappealing (spicy snickerdoodle cookies with chipotle chili powder in them; a German chocolate cake with cayenne pepper). However, there were some great looking recipes that I plan on trying, as well.

I receieved a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Yumminess!, June 20, 2014
This review is from: The Homesick Texan's Family Table: Lone Star Cooking from My Kitchen to Yours (Hardcover)
About the Book:

From beloved food blogger Lisa Fain, aka the Homesick Texan, comes this follow-up to her wildly popular debut cookbook, featuring more than 125 recipes for wonderfully comforting, ingredient-driven Lone Star classics that the whole family will love.

There are few things finer than a delicious, homemade meal shared with family and friends. Take it from Lisa Fain, a seventh-generation Texan who loves to cook and serve up the best dishes her home state has to offer—even though she now lives half a country away.
The Homesick Texan’s Family Table showcases more than 100 of Lisa’s best and most-loved recipes, ranging from down-home standards (think cheesy nachos, comforting chicken and dumplings, and fiery wings) to contemporary riffs on the classics (who knew adding Mexican spices to a German chocolate cake would taste so good?).
All of Lisa’s recipes are made with fresh, seasonal ingredients, yet still packed with real Texas flavor that will make your grandmother smile. Whether you’re looking for a party-friendly snack like Pigs in Jalapeño Blankets, a Mustard Coleslaw to bring as a side to your next potluck, a weeknight- and family-friendly meal like Steak Fingers with Cream Gravy, or a mouthwatering dessert like Ruby Red Grapefruit and Pecan Sheet Cake, The Homesick Texan’s Family Table has you covered. After all, with some mighty fine food and mighty fine people to enjoy it, any meal can be cause for celebration.

About the Author:

LISA FAIN is a seventh-generation Texan. When she's not on the hunt for chile peppers, she writes and photographs the popular food blog Homesick Texan. Lisa's writing has appeared in Saveur and Edible Austin and on the blog Serious Eats, and her photographs have been exhibited worldwide, with two in the permanent collection of the Library of Congress. An active member of Foodways Texas and the Southern Foodways Alliance, Lisa is also a certified barbecue judge. Visit [...]
My Review:

Upon receiving this cookbook and reading through it, I think I may be from Texas even though I have never even visited. Many if not all of the dishes contained in the book I have made at least once. This book has some great recipes and the full color photographs of the finished product is mouth watering---they look so good! The nachos on the front cover are delish! I'm not a fan of guacamole but I would definitely add more jalapeno peppers to mine.

The author has everything from appetizers, breakfast, salads, soups, stews, dinner, and even some yummy sweets. There is even condiment recipes in the back of the book. Lisa Fain, the author has taken care of everything and provided you with all you need to whip up a feast Texas style!

**Disclosure** This book was sent to me free of charge for my honest review from Blogging for Books.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Will warm your heart and belly. Fab cookbook., September 19, 2014
This review is from: The Homesick Texan's Family Table: Lone Star Cooking from My Kitchen to Yours (Hardcover)
So. I pretty much loved The Homesick Texan. It's a beautiful cookbook and even though I can't really cook most of the recipes--unless there are guests visiting--since I'm a vegetarian I loved it none-the-less. It had an amazing feel to it that made me think of home and loved ones and, yes, had me tearing up just a wee bit as I read Fain's intro and little notes throughout the book. She really captured family and friends so well and the wonderful way food can be used to create memories. The recipes were lovely, hearty and easy. The photos abundant and comfortable. Very much a cookbookish win and worth every penny of the price.

The recipes/ingredients--

Family comfort is what came to mind with the recipes and ingredients. There are 125 recipes from desserts and breakfast to sides and main courses. They were laid out nicely and easy to read, there was a family story of sorts to start each out which I loved. The ingredients were simple and easy to find. Other than fresh ingredients many of the items needed are staples in a lot of kitchens and I was able to pick out a recipe and make it without rushing to the store which I love. My only complaint was the use of kosher salt in recipes since I don't keep that on hand and measurements for regular salt are different. Not an issue in the cooking side of things but on the baking side that made it more difficult.

The Photographs--

I LOVED them. They're not trying to be fancy but have the home-ish feel to them. Nearly every other page has some sort of photograph and they're lovely with a nice welcoming feel to them. They gave me that oh I could SO do that thought. lol There are nice landscapes from around Texas as well which was nice.

What Made It Special--

Fain had an incredible voice. I loved reading her little family stories and her intro. She really sparked a longing in me. That desire to run home to see my family or call up my friends to do something. She very much captured that feeling of comfort and love you get from being with the people you care most about.

Recipes Marked to Try--

Great Grandma Blache's Chocolate Muffins (made em--yum!)
Oatmeal Bread
Guacamole Salad
Chipotle Cheddar Scalloped Potatoes
Creamy Macaroni and Cheese
Squash Blossom Soup w/ Zucchini Corn Salsa
Butterscotch Brownies
Caballero Cookies
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect for parties and dinners with friends - equally great for easy weeknight meals, July 3, 2014
This review is from: The Homesick Texan's Family Table: Lone Star Cooking from My Kitchen to Yours (Hardcover)
Guys, I have a bit of a cookbook obsession. I mean really, a cookbook combines two of my favorite things: food and reading. What's not to love, right? Quite a bit actually, as anyone who's ever tackled a recipe in an overly complicated or less than stellar-ly put together cookbook can attest. But oh, when you find a good cookbook - and I mean a real go to that can be relied on every single time you pick a recipe - that's something to cherish!

I've been a follower of Lisa Fain's Homesick Texan blog for a while now - since before her first cookbook released actually. And that first cookbook, The Homesick Texan Cookbook, made my Christmas list the year it was released. Her recipes are easy to follow and I love the stories that go alongside them (even though they frequently make me homesick myself). That first book gets fairly regular use in my house and is one I reach for whenever we have company coming or are invited to pot lucks. So when the new cookbook was announced and I found out the focus was on dishes to be "shared with friends and family" you bet it again made the wish list.

Let me back up just a bit by saying that as someone who grew up less than an hour from the Texas border, with a 100% Texan grandmother, Fain's food focus is close to my heart. Recipes like her Steak Fingers with Jalapeño Cream Gravy bring back memories of living in a place where Dairy Queen is good for more than just Blizzards (that post also led to a serious binge watch of Friday Night Lights). And I will ever be grateful for her sharing the Ninfa's Green Sauce recipe (if you didn't grow up near a Ninfa's you must try this stuff, it's magical!).

Since getting my hot little hands on The Homesick Texan's Family Table we've been trying new recipes fairly regularly. The steak fingers mentioned above are featured (we even broke out the Fry Daddy for that one - totally not necessary but it contained the oil a bit). The addition of jalapeños to the standard cream gravy is so simple and yet something I'd never have come up with on my own.

The Michelada Flank Steak Tortas with Poblano Buttermilk Dressing was our second attempt from the book and it made for multiple meals in our house of two. That flank steak fresh off the grill was amazing. We didn't actually do it up as sandwiches until meal two - meal one was just the steak alongside some grilled green onions we bought at the farmers market and some Spanish rice.

Both the Sopa de Lima and the Chicken Spaghetti made for great easy weeknight meals. The spaghetti recipe is a variation of something that's been something of a staple in my household, but Fain's recipe replaces the Velveeta with a homemade cheese sauce and adds a tangy lime twist to it as well.

Obviously I haven't had a chance to try everything from the book but the Spicy Pea Salad did become my contribution to a recent pot luck party. I've got my eye on the Frito Salad as my next try and the Ruby Red Grapefruit and Pecan Sheet Cake as well. Also in my future plans - tamale party!

Per Blogging for Books requirements: I received this book for free from Blogging for Books in exchange for an honest review.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars I have lived in Texas and like everybody have my own Texas, August 25, 2014
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This review is from: The Homesick Texan's Family Table: Lone Star Cooking from My Kitchen to Yours (Hardcover)
I have lived in Texas and like everybody have my own Texas. Mine did not always (though often) include the kinds of foods I found in this book, at least in the quantity in which they're represented. If you like Tex-Mex, this is for you; if you want more of Texas, maybe not so much. The writing, however, is good, the personality of the writer very pleasant. Next edition, I'd venture further afield across more of the state and its specialties. I think the NY Times gave it a better rating than I did. On the one hand, they're very good. On the other, many of them haven't lived in Texas. It's a pretty good book, and with broader coverage would be even better.
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The Homesick Texan's Family Table: Lone Star Cooking from My Kitchen to Yours
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