Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create an account.

rotuts

Deep Run Roots by Vivian Howard

Recommended Posts

Thank you all for the enthusiastic comments on this book, some of these recipes sound wonderful and unique. Like a lot of you I don't need another cookbook on the shelf but this one sounds great, I appreciate discovering it here through all of you.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@blue_dolphin  

 

thanks for that clarification.   when you see the show , note that the goal is " sweetness "  

 

Ive kept Supermarket ' scallions or green onions '  in a recycled yogurt container near a kitchen window with some sun for years.

 

I rinse off the roots from time to time and use the tops for garnish.    they last a long time.

 

but they get harsh after a while  esp the white part.

 

so what ever you use for VH's Rx , you are looking for the white part that still sweet.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Does she include weights or is it the dreaded cup recipes? :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, Tere said:

Does she include weights or is it the dreaded cup recipes? :)

The latter I am afraid (looking at images on Amazon.com).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Indeed, this is a cups and spoons book.

Weights and count measurements show up here and there - a pound of scallops, ears of corn, sleeves of Saltine crackers :D.

I suspect most of the traditional recipes had to be converted from juice glass, handful, pinch and jelly jar measurements so it wouldn't have been that difficult to include weights as well but this is still the backwards old US of A, clinging to the measurements of our founders xDxDxD!

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Good point.  re Cups and weight.

 

Ive looked thought it  and I can't see anything where this matter that much,

 

precision baking is not what this book is about .

 

Peaches and Cream Cake on pp 460 asks for 2 cups of all purpose flour rather than giving you the weight  for the cake part which is for a Chiffon Cake.

 

Chocolate Orange Beet Cake   on pp 520 asks for both 1 cup all purpose flour and 1 cup cake flour.

 

I see only 4 ' Cakes ' in the index.

 

Im guessing  delicious and fantastic Cakes were baked in the Cups system for some time, now and in the past.

 

its not a baking book, nor a Patissier book.

 

but its a fair question to ask.

 

Ive only read  close to 1/2 of the book.   I stayed up a bit last night.

 

I don't have Cable  and was not Ready for Some BaseBall.

 

however , I have not seen any ref's so far for Medium Moisture light grey Cape Hatteras Low Tide sea salt.

 

I sure hope that's not coming tonight.

 

I can't imagine the more modern Avoir du Pois system making much difference in these 4 Rx's  

 

but Ive mentioned earlier   Im not a baker.

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm of the same mind as @rotuts.  There's only one yeast bread and a handful of other baked items.  I haven't come upon a recipe where the lack of weights annoyed me, and it sometimes does.  

Nonetheless, a fair question - I know many have sworn off purchasing cookbooks that use these old timey measurements.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I was amazed when gifted a couple of the Thomas Keller books and they were cuptastic. I've added it to my Amazon wishlist anyway. I reckon it's a Christmas present my mum will enjoy buying for me and I'm at about 14 things on there, lol.

 

Reminds me to actually measure the cup measurements we have and work out if they are British or US. Ditto the spoon measurements. Hubby didn't know (they are both his when we combined houses as I wasn't anywhere near as interested in cooking at that time) and I've been using them regardless with no major ill effects. But would be good to know for sure.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
18 minutes ago, Tere said:

I was amazed when gifted a couple of the Thomas Keller books and they were cuptastic. I've added it to my Amazon wishlist anyway. I reckon it's a Christmas present my mum will enjoy buying for me and I'm at about 14 things on there, lol.

 

Reminds me to actually measure the cup measurements we have and work out if they are British or US. Ditto the spoon measurements. Hubby didn't know (they are both his when we combined houses as I wasn't anywhere near as interested in cooking at that time) and I've been using them regardless with no major ill effects. But would be good to know for sure.

Cups and measuring spoons are ingrained in the American psyche but I sometimes think we Canadians are worse. We supposedly follow the metric system but then call for non-liquid ingredients by the ml. WTF. I downloaded a Kindle sample of the book and was equally frustrated to see such things as "a bunch of asparagus" and "a bunch of scallions". How imprecise is that?  

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, Anna N said:

Cups and measuring spoons are ingrained in the American psyche but I sometimes think we Canadians are worse. We supposedly follow the metric system but then call for non-liquid ingredients by the ml. WTF. I downloaded a Kindle sample of the book and was equally frustrated to see such things as "a bunch of asparagus" and "a bunch of scallions". How imprecise is that?  

 

I don't think that this type of cooking of necessity has to be particularly precise.  I am reminded of Judy Rodgers admonishment to taste and test as you go along.  In fact, Vivian Howard also suggests that same idea when she mentions the amount of infused cream to include in the spring onion recipe.  She says "The scallions should be wading in the cream, their chests barely peeking out, rather than bobbing around in an ocean of it. Adjust by scooping out some liquid or adding a little straight cream from the carton if necessary."

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
16 minutes ago, Anna N said:

I downloaded a Kindle sample of the book and was equally frustrated to see such things as "a bunch of asparagus" and "a bunch of scallions". How imprecise is that?  

Good that you were able to pick that up in the sample so you know it's not a book for you.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, Shel_B said:

 

I don't think that this type of cooking of necessity has to be particularly precise.  I am reminded of Judy Rodgers admonishment to taste and test as you go along.  In fact, Vivian Howard also suggests that same idea when she mentions the amount of infused cream to include in the spring onion recipe.  She says "The scallions should be wading in the cream, their chests barely peeking out, rather than bobbing around in an ocean of it. Adjust by scooping out some liquid or adding a little straight cream from the carton if necessary."

  Thank God we're all entitled to our own opinions.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I recall from the video of the show the scallion dish made the first time was not the way she wanted it....either too much egg or not enough.  So if the cream volume is not specified, how is one have the correct amount of egg for it to set.  I'm with you AnnaN.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I just find cups such a pain in the behind to deal with - I would so much rather weigh out some dry ingredients than suffer the dip / bang or pour / shake conga....

 

(I might be prejudiced by as an exchange student dealing with a conventional American spoon measure for the first time and being so boggled by the size of the teaspoon I doubled the salt in the peanut butter cookies I was making - then had silent rage when my host mother (who is the worst cook I ever have known and I escaped and ate vegetables for two months because I was so sick of just boiled spaghetti and bought pasta sauce) was sooo patronising about the poor little British girl who wouldn't cook. Consider the mote in your eye...

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
38 minutes ago, Okanagancook said:

I recall from the video of the show the scallion dish made the first time was not the way she wanted it....either too much egg or not enough.  So if the cream volume is not specified, how is one have the correct amount of egg for it to set.  I'm with you AnnaN.

Well, there's no egg in the recipe on the website, so it appears the "too much egg" issue in the her first attempt was addressed by removing egg entirely in the final version.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

With a couple minor adaptations the tomato pie recipe is my all-time favorite recipe.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 minutes ago, cyalexa said:

With a couple minor adaptations the tomato pie recipe is my all-time favorite recipe.

How have you adapted it? Do the leftovers keep for a bit? It's on my list and I was thinking I should really give it a go while we still have plenty of good tomatoes here. I'd like to scale it down a bit as 3.5 lbs of farmers market heirlooms will put dent in my wallet!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Let me cast a weak vote in favor of occasional imprecision.  Some recipes defy absolute quantification and rely on feel.  I'm thinking of a cauliflower gratin I make. If the cauli is very fresh it is so wet that the gratin is soupy, so I precook it to dry it out a bit. I suppose if I could test the density of the thing then I could give a precise recipe, but I can't; so I rely on feeling the heft of the cauliflower and prebaking as needed.

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Tere, I could not agree with you more about weighing vs volume measure.

i made a list of volume measure and equivalent weights for common items I use.  For example weight of a medium onion, weight of 1/2 cup chopped onion, etc, saves me a lot of stupid jamming ingredients into a measuring device.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
41 minutes ago, gfweb said:

Let me cast a weak vote in favor of occasional imprecision.  Some recipes defy absolute quantification and rely on feel.  I'm thinking of a cauliflower gratin I make. If the cauli is very fresh it is so wet that the gratin is soupy, so I precook it to dry it out a bit. I suppose if I could test the density of the thing then I could give a precise recipe, but I can't; so I rely on feeling the heft of the cauliflower and prebaking as needed.

I am not at all against some imprecision.  I am against a bunch of anything, a can of anything, a package of anything when a defined weight would give me a clearer understanding of what quantity is called for. Of course adjust as needed. Not all lemons have the same degree of "lemon essence", not all cauliflowers contain the same amount of moisture but 250g/8oz and similar measurements do not vary. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, Anna N said:

I am not at all against some imprecision.  I am against a bunch of anything, a can of anything, a package of anything when a defined weight would give me a clearer understanding of what quantity is called for. Of course adjust as needed. Not all lemons have the same degree of "lemon essence", not all cauliflowers contain the same amount of moisture but 250g/8oz and similar measurements do not vary. 

 

The issue as I see it is very simple: a pound of a vegetable like spring onions or leeks, while a precise measurement, does not take into account such things as the size and shape of the item.  A pound of thick onions will yield fewer spears than thin ones.  Therefore, more of the cream mixture will be needed to cover the spears to a certain depth, and the depth of the cream is important to the recipe, more so than the specific weight or volume of the cream..  And , since the depth of the cream is important, the size of the dish can be a big factor in how much cream will be needed and how many spears can fit into the dish.  So, IMO, there are many variables that will affect the amounts of the ingredients that are required.  So, precise measurements of weight and/or volume may still need to be adjusted when all other factors are considered.

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Shel_B said:

 

The issue as I see it is very simple: a pound of a vegetable like spring onions or leeks, while a precise measurement, does not take into account such things as the size and shape of the item.  A pound of thick onions will yield fewer spears than thin ones.  Therefore, more of the cream mixture will be needed to cover the spears to a certain depth, and the depth of the cream is important to the recipe, more so than the specific weight or volume of the cream..  And , since the depth of the cream is important, the size of the dish can be a big factor in how much cream will be needed and how many spears can fit into the dish.  So, IMO, there are many variables that will affect the amounts of the ingredients that are required.  So, precise measurements of weight and/or volume may still need to be adjusted when all other factors are considered.

 

The best I've seen that takes into account this aspect is something like "a bunch of carrots without tops (about 2lb)" or similar. So you have a ballpark for what the recipe author's bunch looks like. It isn't quite precise but doesn't leave you completely guessing either.

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I dunno. I read all these posts in other threads where people are against "recipes." You have to understand the ingredients, get a feel for ratios, recipes are too limiting, etc. And now when a recipe is "imprecise," everyone is against that imprecision. Sheesh. Which one is it? :P

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, cakewalk said:

I dunno. I read all these posts in other threads where people are against "recipes." You have to understand the ingredients, get a feel for ratios, recipes are too limiting, etc. And now when a recipe is "imprecise," everyone is against that imprecision. Sheesh. Which one is it? :P

Depends on my mood and who is trying to push my buttons.xDxD

  • Like 8

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I feel this book is a bit different.

 

in the  " A Chef's Life " thread , about the PBS show . Ive mentioned that the show connects me to an area of my country I know very little about.

 

it connects me to the people there esp the farmers and a way of life i know little about.

 

I did pass through there in the mid '70's on the way to S.C where I had some friends.  From the North.  I had 2 weeks vacation , a luxury I remember.

 

Im exceptionally pleased , that through very very hard work , Vivian Howard has found a place where her hard work and talent has touched many.

 

this book is not an Rx book.  its about that story.   however  , its an Rx book for things to put on your plate.

 

many of the ingredients Ive not paid much attention to , that on me.  some I won't try :  Okra  lets say.

 

fortunately  there is not chapter ( as far as I can see )  on Green Bell Peppers. if she has those Yuks in an Rx  

 

smiley-ptdr.gif

 

there is enough data    on the PBS site  where you can see all the shows  there will be one Rx I think 

 

[ed.: unlike other PBS show .... you know the ones , Yes ? ]

 

the book is about an intelligent person ,  who returned to her roots , and though very hard work , made the ingredients of that area

 

with her own twist ,   which is to me important

 

worth looking into.

 

look at the show.   look at the offered Rx  ...

 

and no , its less  [  < ]  than  Imaginary Number for me to even look into Okra.

 

after all , Justin Wilson said a long long time ago :

 

""  Ooooo Weeee  Ive got to de-slime the Okra !  ""

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×