Prairie Home Cooking: 400 Recipes that Celebrate the Bountiful Harvests, Creative Cooks, and Comforting Foods of the American Heartland

Prairie Home Cooking: 400 Recipes that Celebrate the Bountiful Harvests, Creative Cooks, and Comforting Foods of the American Heartland

by Judith M. Fertig, Sara Love
     
 

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The food of the Heartland is comfort food - and is certainly back in style. Judith Fertig interprets and perfects 400 homespun classics of the prairie table, from Homesteaders' Bean Soup to Breslauer Steaks and Chicken and Wild Rice Hot Dish. She serves up new dishes like Walleye Pike with Fennel and Herbs and Herb-Crusted Loin of Veal. Also included are the very

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Overview

The food of the Heartland is comfort food - and is certainly back in style. Judith Fertig interprets and perfects 400 homespun classics of the prairie table, from Homesteaders' Bean Soup to Breslauer Steaks and Chicken and Wild Rice Hot Dish. She serves up new dishes like Walleye Pike with Fennel and Herbs and Herb-Crusted Loin of Veal. Also included are the very best ethnic dishes, such as Bohemian Spaetzle, Czech Potato Dumplings, and Swedish Turnip and Carrot Charlotte.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Fertig (Pure Prairie and Que Queens) uses her native knowledge of the heartland (and parts of Canada) and its cultural patchwork to create dishes that go beyond the dreaded Campbell soup casseroles without losing that essential ingredient--comfort. For reliable, filling recipes that make great leftovers, this is the ticket. Hearty appetites will appreciate Polish Wild Mushroom and Potato Soup or Wisconsin Cheddar Beer Soup. For spicier fare there's Santa Fe Trail Smothered Steak. The book's strong point is the sinful, filling food category, which includes Baked Macaroni and Cheddar and Golden Nugget Custard. The breakfast section (St. Louis Gooey Coffee Cake, Gingerbread Waffles with Pear Sauce) appeals any time of day. Cooks will learn that Church Supper Chicken and Wild Rice Hot Dish, more than a casserole, is a Minnesotan potluck rite of passage. Tucked into every nook of this exhaustive collection are what may be the best treats of all--original jellies and sides (Raspberries and Red Currants in Honeysuckle Jelly) that conjure up stops at roadside country stands. (Aug.) Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
Library Journal
When the "back-to-the-land" movement first struck, a number of country cooking/ heartland cookbooks appeared, but that was more than a few years ago. Fertig's (Pure Prairie: Farm Fresh and Wildly Delicious Foods from the Prairie) latest cookbook includes dozens of enticing recipes for both homey comfort food and more contemporary fare, from St. Louis Gooey Butter Coffeecake to Smoked Goat Cheese on Field Greens. Many of them reflect the diverse ethnic backgrounds of the immigrants to the Midwest; others come from early American cookbooks. Readable sidebars cover a variety of topics, including the location of Laura Ingalls Wilder museums and "historic sites," and quotations from writers such as Willa Cather and Mark Twain are scattered throughout. Highly recommended. [Good Cook/BOMC main selection.] Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
People Magazine
This book is not affiliated with Garrison Keillor's public radio show, but other than the title, there's nothing derivative about Prairie Home Cooking. Midwestern cuisine tends to get short shrift in the trendy world of food writing, and Kansas author Fertig reveals why that's a shame. Unusual but simple fare like Orchard Chicken with Cider and Prunes—as fine a braised chicken dish as you'll find anywhere—demonstrates how the region's German and Swedish immigrants brought European flair to the prairie's rich harvests.

The best chapter, A Prairie Pantry, explains how to pickle onions, make vinegar from wild leeks, prepare chokeberry jelly and preserve watermelon rind. Elsewhere, Fertig even discusses Midwestern microbreweries that specialize in (what else?) wheat beer. Literary echoes from Willa Cather, Mark Twain and Laura Ingalls Wilder, among others, complement Fertig's own bucolic reminisces.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781558321458
Publisher:
Harvard Common Press, The
Publication date:
10/11/2011
Series:
America Cooks Series
Pages:
448
Sales rank:
777,334
Product dimensions:
9.13(w) x 7.25(h) x 1.22(d)

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Meet the Author

Judith M. Fertig is a bestselling and award-winning cookbook author. She lives in Shawnee Mission, Kansas, where she develops recipes that celebrate the rich culinary traditions of the Heartland. A recognized authority on regional Midwestern cuisine and an experienced cookbook author and food writer, she has studied at the Cordon Bleu in London and La Varenne in Paris. Prairie Home Breads follows Fertig's definitive Prairie Home Cooking, a collection of recipes inspired by the abundant produce of the Midwestern states, including wild and heirloom fruits and vegetables, game, grains, and beef. The bestselling Prairie Home Cooking was a 1999 nominee for both the IACP Cookbook Award and the James Beard Book Award. Fertig is also the author of the award-winning Pure Prairie: Farm Fresh and Wildly Delicious Foods from the Prairie, as well as several books on barbeque with coauthor Karen Adler. In addition to these cookbooks, Fertig wrote the Great Plains chapter of the American version of Culinaria, a two-volume book on American culinary traditions. She is a contributor to numerous distinguished magazines and newspapers, including the New York Times, the London Sunday Times, the San Francisco Chronicle, Saveur, Santé, Country Living, and Country Home. Fertig was inspired to write the Prairie Home cookbooks while living in London. Although she had lived and traveled all over the Midwest, living abroad gave her a new perspective, revealing the Midwest as a region of culinary innovation, cultural diversity, and fresh and varied native foods and produce. Looking at this familiar region from a new perspective allowed Fertig to capture the honest wholesomeness of Midwestern cuisine in her cookbooks. To write Prairie Home Breads, Fertig visited Old World artisanal bakeries, farmhouse kitchens, rural church suppers, community bake sales, bustling urban ethnic bakeries, farmer's markets, and home kitchens throughout the Midwest. Fertig shares her considerable culinary expertise and her appreciation of the Midwestern kitchen in cooking classes and seminars and as a restaurant consultant.

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