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My 2 New Year’s Resolutions

Hi Friends

Did you get make it through the first week of the year? Back in the office? Kids back in school? If you made a new year’s resolution, are you still on track?

I usually don’t make new year’s resolutions, but this year I am making a list of specific goals with time lines and I’m writing them down.

Speaking of new year’s resolutions, I did make 2 and I’m going to share them with you.

First, cook Southern.

Sweet Shark gave me the new The Southerner’s Cookbook, Recipes, Wisdom and Stories from the Editors of Garden and Gun.

Garden and Gun is one of my favorite magazines: awesome writers, such as Rick Bragg, Roy Blount, Jr., and Julia Reed, memorable stories and great recipes from around the South.

My 2 New Year's Resolutions

Sweet Shark also gave me a subscription to Garden and Gun for Christmas.  I love that guy; he knows just what this girl wants before I tell him. I can’t wait to dive into this cookbook.  Since I have several other southern cookbooks (and favorite recipes in each), I decided this was the year to really concentrate on one of my favorite cuisines. Southern cooking is rich in history, culture, and technique; all that is needed are the right ingredients, spices and herbs. Whether you love the low-country cuisine of South Carolina, the coastal cuisine of Florida, the meat and three of Georgia, Alabama and Mississippi, the Creole and Cajun of Louisiana, or the barbecue of  Tennessee and Texas (which I am naturally partial to ~ beef, baby, beef), Southern cookin’ is the best. I’ve had some of the best food in the world, not in New York or California or Chicago, but in Dallas, Atlanta, New Orleans, and Maryland and points in between.  Southern cooking is all about home, friends and family around the table ~ just the way I like it.

Second, read Southern.

I am a voracious reader and as an English major and former English teacher, I’ve read hundreds of books in my time. As I mentioned in the posts about New Orleans, I could spend hours in a book store, just browsing and reading.  I’m a like a kid in a candy store. The smell of books, the print on the page, the feel of the paper all bring wonderful anticipation to me.  As you might guess, I’m not an e-book reader.  I know it’s convenient, but there is just no ambiance, no connection for me.  Browsing through Faulkner House Books in the French Quarter, I realized how few Southern writers I have read over the years.  Yes, I’ve read both of Harper Lee’s novels, a little Faulkner, Mark Twain (I taught Huck Finn, too.), Julia Reed.  Does John Grisham count? I love Pat Conroy, Mary Kay Andrews and Fannie Flagg. So, this year, I’m going to make an effort to read Southern writers.  Not just Southern writers, but include more of them in my selections. The nice lady at Faulkner suggested I started with Eudora Welty and I bought a copy of 2 novels, Delta Wedding and The Ponder House.

My 2 New Year's Resolutions

What Southern cookbooks do you have and what are your favorites? What Southern writers do you like and what books do you recommend?  I’m asking for suggestions. Please share.

 

 

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9 Comments

  1. Carol, I recently read Delta Wedding. I was also wanting to read a book written by someone whom I had heard of but had not read before. Yes, John Grisham must count. I love his books!
    Sarah Evans

    1. That’s a coincidence. Delta Wedding sounds so familiar that I wonder if I did read it in school years ago. I’m almost finished. Have you read The PastelTrilogy by Gayden Metcalf and Charlotte Hays? Hilarious; one title: Some Dy You’ll Thank Me: The Official Southern Ladies’ Guide to Being the Perfect Mother. Check them out. And anything by Julia Reed.

    2. Sarah, I just finished Delta Wedding. I really enjoyed it, but Welty’s writing is obviously different from most contemporary writers. Try Olive Ann Burns. It’s been a long time since I read her Cold Sassy Tree, but it is classic.

  2. You a girl after my own heart Carol. Growing up in Mississippi, I have ALL of those authors mentioned in our library. I have always loved the writings of Truman Capote, William Faulkner, Ferrol Sams and of course, Eudora Welty. I met her at a tea and my nephew often visited her when he was growing up. Having attended Ole Miss in Oxford, my husband and I often rode out to Twelve Oaks and peeked through the windows of Mr. Faulkners beloved home. His favorite food was Salmon Cakes! I have posts about this and many, many stories of New Orleans! Isn’t it fun to browse through the rich stories of the south and all of these wonderful recipes! That’s what I’m about…southern through and through. Enjoy your gifts and your cooking!! Hugs!

    1. Wow, you are an expert. I’ve never heard of Ferrol Sams. I’ll look him up. I forgot to mention Olive Ann Burns is another favorite. The Faulkner House Books in New Orleans is where Faulkner lived for awhile. It’s tiny. Any other recommendations?

  3. I love every single author you mentioned. I get Garden and Gun because of Julia Reed. I loved her books.

    I also like Kaye Gibbons (Charms of the Easy Life and Ellen Foster), and for something more mainstream, I love James Lee Burke’s earliest mystery novels about southern Louisiana.
    (recurring character: Dave Robicheaux)

    We are kindred spirits. I am a retired high school English teacher.

    Laura-

    1. Laura, thank you for your recommendations. What’s that saying about English teachers, We don’t die, we just . . . ?

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