In Pursuit of Flavor

In Pursuit of Flavor

by Edna Lewis, Louisa Jones Waller
     
 

View All Available Formats & Editions

Perhaps no other cook has played such a central role in the renaissance of traditional southern cooking as Edna Lewis. When asked who has influenced them most, chefs from New York to Little Washington to Charleston cite Ms. Lewis and her classic collection of recipes, In Pursuit of Flavor, first published in 1988.

Edna Lewis learned to cook by watching her mother

…  See more details below

Overview

Perhaps no other cook has played such a central role in the renaissance of traditional southern cooking as Edna Lewis. When asked who has influenced them most, chefs from New York to Little Washington to Charleston cite Ms. Lewis and her classic collection of recipes, In Pursuit of Flavor, first published in 1988.

Edna Lewis learned to cook by watching her mother prepare food in their kitchen in a small farming community in Virginia. Because she was raised at a time when the vegetables came from the garden, fruit from the orchard, pickles, relishes, chutney, and jellies from quick canning, and meat from the smokehouse, Edna Lewis knows how food should taste. Every recipe included in her cookbook, both old friends and new discoveries, reflects her memory of and continuing search for good flavor.

In chapters devoted to fruits and vegetables, meat and fowl, fish, herbs and spices, bread, and other baked goods, Ms. Lewis shares her secrets for getting the best out of food: combining tomatoes with cymling squash, pumpkins with onion and bacon, cooking sweet potatoes with lemon, and boiling corn in its husk. She always keeps a bit of country ham around to perk up greens, cooks fish fillets or chicken breasts in parchment, and braises meat in a clay pot to keep it moist. Her baking recipes, for the griddle and the oven, include tips on the right flour to use, how to make your own baking powder (to avoid the chemical taste), how to listen for signs that a cake is done, and when to use frozen butter in a pie crust and when to use pure leaf lard.

In Pursuit of Flavor brings generations of cooking wisdom to today's kitchen.

University of Virginia Press

Read More

Editorial Reviews

John Martin Taylor
As the voice of one of the first communities of freed African Americans, Edna Lewis captures the elegance of palate of Virginia with both aplomb and grace. Her recipes reflect a genuine knowledge of, and passion for, the region; their subtleties of flavor are indicative of the sure hand of an accomplished cook. Simple directions, and deeply rooted ingredients and techniques power this important voice of the twentieth-century south, and hence, the country.

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Here Lewis forages into the past for the beloved foods of her Virginia childhood, cooked indoors with produce grown in the family garden``a pampered piece of soil outside the kitchen window.'' Good food, the author argues, must be ``honestly cooked'': made from produce in season that was raised organically, and prepared simply, with one's feet on the ground. Her repertoire includes distinctly Southern dishes, such as cooked greens and catfish stew, as well as many with a rural accent, requiring squirrels, she-crabs or rabbits. The down-home emphasis is occasionally varied by Nigerian and Ethiopian fare. However, Lewis's best recipes stay close to home (Vidalia onion pickles, Brunswick stew, potato cakes, peach cobber with nutmeg sauce). Admittedly fond of heavy cream, lard and other animal fats, she suggests low-fat alternatives for those who aren't. Though some of the author's deliciously old-fashioned assertions``good cooks always put up their own food''are impractical, anyone pining for food that tastes of farm and family will not be left hungry. BOMC Cooking and Crafts Club main selection. (Oct.)
Library Journal
Well-known caterer, chef, restaurant consultant, teacher, and cookbook author Lewis has developed her own style of cooking, based on Southern country dishes but influenced by her curiosity about all sorts of foods. Above all, a dish should taste good and be true to its ingredients. Many of her recipes are for old-fashioned, traditional favorites such as Chicken Soup with Dumplings; some are for unfairly forgotten dishes like Brunswick Stew. Others are African and Caribbean in origin; and manysuch as Eels and Scallopsare purely her own invention. For all collections. BOMC Main selection. JS

Read More

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780813919898
Publisher:
University of Virginia
Publication date:
04/28/2000
Series:
Virginia Bookshelf Series
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
338
Sales rank:
298,073
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.76(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

What People are saying about this

"As the voice of one of the first communities of freed African Americans, Edna Lewis captures the elegance of palate of Virginia with both aplomb and grace. Her recipes reflect a genuine knowledge of, and passion for, the region; their subtleties of flavor are indicative of the sure hand of an accomplished cook. Simple directions, and deeply rooted ingredients and techniques power this important voice of the twentieth-century south, and hence, the country." -- John Martin Taylor, author of Hoppin' John's Lowcountry Cooking

John Martin Taylor
As the voice of one of the first communities of freed African Americans, Edna Lewis captures the elegance of palate of Virginia with both aplomb and grace. Her recipes reflect a genuine knowledge of, and passion for, the region; their subtleties of flavor are indicative of the sure hand of an accomplished cook. Simple directions, and deeply rooted ingredients and techniques power this important voice of the twentieth-century south, and hence, the country.

Read More

Meet the Author

Edna Lewis was born in Freetown, Orange County, Virginia, in a community founded by her grandfather and his friends shortly after their emancipation from slavery. She is the author of The Taste of Country Cooking.

University of Virginia Press

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >