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Mayhaw Man

Louisiana Cookbooks: favorites (merged)

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As part of the discussion going on among the tourists over in this thread concerning Gumbo and the right way to make it, Kristin (a lovely and talented cook of many Cuisines who lives in Japan) announced that she has a ton of cookbooks and that NONE of them concern the subject of Louisiana Cuisine.

I am flattered... :biggrin:

That Encyclopedia book sounds incredible though I don't think it is obtainable from Japan, I chcked the site and it doesn't say anything about international shipping or what kind of credit cards it takes (I only have a JCB card :sad: ).

the Emeril book is available at Amazon.jp, I might try that one out, looking forward to more suggestions...

Kris, just wanted to echo Brooks' rec. upthread for the Cotton Country Collection. I purchased it a number of months ago after he mentioned it on another thread (I believe it contains a couple of his mothers/grandmothers ?? recipes) and I absolutely LOVE the book. He's right there are a number of easy recipes that you might not make (think jellied salads) but there are some real gems, too. I also have the Emeril book and like it too, but the the Cotton Country Collection is definitely full of authentic flavour. One recipe is followed by the comment "Men love this!" :shock::laugh: Price-wise I don't think you could go wrong.

You got a problem with jellied salads? Huh?

ANd the men love this....let me guess......Sandie's Specials? Nat Troy?

Let's just say the jelly salad with orange jello, vanilla ice cream, maraschino cherries and canned pineapple would just about do me in. Full disclosure, my grandmother made a jellied salad for every single dinner in my memory and used the strangest (oft-times God-awful) combinations ever seen.

I haven't tried the squirrel yet, either. As for the "men love this" it wasn't Sandie's Specials and a quick glance hasn't helped me find it again......will keep looking.


Barbara Laidlaw aka "Jake"

Good friends help you move, real friends help you move bodies.

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It is newly published. The first printing was sold out very quickly. Apparently, the second will be a much larger run and will go into general release. The Folse Website is still selling them, but I believe that the actual situation is that they are taking orders and waiting on reprints. This fabulous book was published by Folse's Publishing Company, so distribution, initially, seemed to be primarily in the Southeastern US and online.

It's worth the wait. Really. If you want a signed one you can order them from Folse himself. The site is listed above.


Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

There's a train everyday, leaving either way...

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Thanks. Guess I'll just place an order on his site.

Amazon usually lists new publications as "not yet available" (or something like that) - that's why I was wondering if this is a new book.

p.s. to Kristin: Japan shows up on the list of counties when submitting the order. Was there a problem with billing? Maybe you could email or call to order the book.

Edit: can't speel


Edited by edsel (log)

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Happy Valentine's Day to me! My Encyclopedia of Cajun and Creole Cuisine arrived today. I've only given it a brief perusal, but it looks fabulous. Can't wait to dig into all of its juicy goodness.


"I like 'em french fried pertaters." (Billy Bob Thornton as Karl, in Sling Blade.)

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  As for the "men love this" it wasn't Sandie's Specials and a quick glance hasn't helped me find it again......will keep looking.

It's pretty funny how this works. I told my wife, Robin, about this conundrum and she said that I was all mixed up (this is totally without looking, and she was laughing at herself}, she said, "no, no, no. 'Grasse burgers are for when teenagers arrive' and 'men love Grand Potatoes'"

Damned if she wasn't right on the money. :laugh:


Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

There's a train everyday, leaving either way...

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Happy Valentine's Day to me! My Encyclopedia of Cajun and Creole Cuisine arrived today. I've only given it a brief perusal, but it looks fabulous. Can't wait to dig into all of its juicy goodness.

Mine came yesterday as well. This is one hell of a book. I don't say cookbook, and if I were a librarian I would probably be tempted to put it in the history section, but the recipes are exact on. You all have got to get this book. It weighs a ton, is beautiful and worth twice as much, at least. Beware, shipping is a bit high, cause it does weigh a ton.

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As part of the discussion going on among the tourists over in this thread concerning Gumbo and the right way to make it, Kristin (a lovely and talented cook of many Cuisines who lives in Japan) announced that she has a ton of cookbooks and that NONE of them concern the subject of Louisiana Cuisine. Well, I gave her a short list of some that I would consider essential:

The Cotton Country Collection

This book, in my mind anyway, is the best collection of recipes ever assembled in Louisiana. Recipes from all over the state, Delta, Acadiana, German Coast, Piney Woods, and everywhere else. I have cooked damn near every recipe in the book over the years and there are no bad ones. The directions are great and the skill levels involved go from dead simple to you better have a grip on Julia's French Cooking.

River Road Recipes Great collection of recipes, with some of hthe best seafood collections I have ever seen.

The Encyclopedia of Cajun and Creole Cooking Get a copy of this book. Just go buy it. Send me a thank you note for telling you to do so.

Emeril's Real and Rustic This is the reason, ultimately, that I respect the guy. His first book and a great one.

I can go on with, literally dozens more, but I go on enough here. There are probably 20 Jr League type books that I would reccomend, along with the Times Picayune/Madame Begue's combo that is now sadly out of print-then there are the Church books and the NOPSI collection (New Orleans Public Service Incorporated used to collect recipes and stick them in utility bills and on the little holders on the streetcars-this ultimately turned into a great collection of recipes that has been published into a book).

Favorites? Reasons why?

I agree with the River Road Recipes offering. My copy is from the 1950's and is barely staying together. It probably leans more to the Creole than the Cajun (which in my main area of interest), but it's way up there on my favorites. For some reason or other, the Junior League cookbooks are, by far, the best collections for Louisiana ethnic cooking. New Orleans Creole Recipes (1932) by Mary Moore Bremer is excellent.... my copy is a rather recent printing, the sixteenth printing in 1952; and To a Kings Taste, published by the National Society of the Colonial Dames of America In the State of Lousiana in 1952 is excellent. I like the older books as they haven't been "Emerilized" as much from the standpoint of neuveaux American cooking and presentation.... not that I don't enjoy a lot of his concoctions.

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My favorite cook-book and my most used one outside of Joy of Cooking is 'The New Orleans Cookbook' by Rima & Richard Collin. This book was published in 1975. I know Rima Collin has passed away but I believe Richard Collin is still involved with one of the Universities down there and still does some food writing.

Beyond wonderful recipes there are some backgrounds, historical notes, and plenty of lagniappe's that have made this book one of my favorites.

I agree too about Emeril's Louisianna Reall & Rustic. This too is a book I refer to regularly when I have a hankerin' for some Cajun cuisine.


Charles a food and wine addict - "Just as magic can be black or white, so can addictions be good, bad or neither. As long as a habit enslaves it makes the grade, it need not be sinful as well." - Victor Mollo

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Brooks, this is my thank you note. My copy of the Encyclopedia of Cajun and Creole Cuisine came yesterday. Some of the histories I already knew about like why the Flordia Parishes are the Florida Parishes. I used to kid my Louisisana Expat friends who lived in Destin about the fact that they had belonged to us at one time and we gave them back. lol

Seriously, the book is a true masterpiece. I know Dave in Shreveport has a copy. There is so much I want to do from it. I just hope it does not mess with the fun I have been having with the Bouchon book from Thomas Keller. His trout recipes are excellent. And the Cauliflower gratin, excellent.

Plus, I had known that Chef John is a food historian, he had given a talk when I used to attend meetings of a culinary group at Newman College. But the depth of his knowledge is very impressive. If anyone wants to truly begin to understand the background of Creole cooking and Cajun Cooking, they need to read the first 125 pages of historical background. Then with each section he delves further into specific foods. I am happier about this book than I am about my Ducasse Spoonfood book.

I think the only way you can get the book is to order it directly from John Folse.

I did have to save up for it but now do not regret it. Any person who is a cookbook person needs this book in their library.


It is good to be a BBQ Judge.  And now it is even gooder to be a Steak Cookoff Association Judge.  Life just got even better.  Woo Hoo!!!

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Now to place another order plus order a book for a friend who grew up in the Irish Channel.


It is good to be a BBQ Judge.  And now it is even gooder to be a Steak Cookoff Association Judge.  Life just got even better.  Woo Hoo!!!

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I got a copy of the Encyclopedia, autographed, while in Lafayette. While I missed the signing event, signed books were still available at the Lily's for Books II section of Bella Luna in the Oil Center. Price $49.95.

I've only read bits and pieces so far, but I can tell this is a must-have volume for anyone interested in Louisiana foods or food history in general. I particularly enjoyed reading about my ancestor, Jean Lafitte, and his scoundrel ways.


Bridget Avila

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My mother cooked with the River Road cookbook almost 50 years ago, so I am very familiar with Classic creole-cajun cookbooks, but the best Cajun-Creole cookbook out there is the original Cajun-Creole Cooking cookbook by Terry Thompson-Anderson.

Don't take my word for it - read the reviews at Amazon. Unfortunately, the new edition is not nearly as good as the original one published over 25 years ago. If you can find it, the original book published by HP books is worth every effort to find. It is hands down the best cajun-creole cookbook ever published.

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pterostyrax, Welcome to eGullet. It's nice to see someone from Vicksburg show up. I was there twice this week. Once on my way home from my parent's place in Monroe and the second time as I passed through on my way up 61 to eat a little food.

I have a copy of the book that you reference, I believe that it came out of my great aunt's kitchen after she died (in pristine condition, she couldn't cook a lick). It is indeed a gem.

But you should really get over to a good bookstore and check out the Folse work, it's nothing short of enthralling. A really well done book. Well written, with a gillion researchers involved, and the photography is done as well, if not better, than the writing. All in all, well worth the money.

Brooks


Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

There's a train everyday, leaving either way...

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But you should really get over to a good bookstore and check out the Folse work, it's nothing short of enthralling. A really well done book. Well written, with a gillion researchers involved, and the photography is done as well, if not better, than the writing. All in all, well worth the money.

Brooks

I have Folse's book and it is indeed one of the best, but there is just something about Terry's book that is extra special to me. Have you tried any of her recipes? There aren't a lot, but each one is just simply a masterpiece.

Next time you're through here, PM me and we can meet at Walnut Hills and eat at the roundtable - honest to God southern food at its purest, overcooked vegetables and all. :biggrin:

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I might do that. I am beginning work on "peas". Oh such a life. Peas will now fill the hole in the void that tamales have been filling for the last 4 months.

I love a Roundtable. A stop in Mindenhall was required everytime that we drove from Monroe to Mobile. I used to love to watch that table spin, fairly groaning with peas, butterbeans, mashed potatoes, corn on the cob, corn off of the cob, okra and tomatoes, green beans with bacon or ham, squash casserole, ham, fried chicken, stewed chicken, pork chops, hamburger steak with onion, and many, many other delights. You just sat down with the other travelers, introduced yourself, and started spinning that culinary wheel of fortune. There were no losers in that game of chance.


Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

There's a train everyday, leaving either way...

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The Folse Book weighs in at 10 lbs. So, when you think about it, this makes it cheaper by the pound that crawfish or crabmeat. And you can use it more than once.  So it's a bargain!

I can justify almost anything if I put it into the price of crabmeat.  :blink:  :laugh:

I'm loving this thread---conjures up decades of pots aboil. I, too, relate things to food prices, especially seafood ones, and can "justify" right along with you, though books, any kind, need no more justification than do sunbeams or laughter.

One of my friends down South related all her jewelry to "college educations." She could jangle a diamond bracelet, and tell you how many years it would send Donna Sue to Ole Miss, or shake her pretty head, making her earrings dance, and calculate to the day how many Sorority dues for Elizabeth Ann could be financed per ear.

Somehow, I cannot recall seeing any of her baubles disappear over the years, a good sign that none of them fell prey to the black holes of tuition and housing in our University system. She's probably wearing at this moment enough gewgaws to send all five grandchildren to Harvard.


Edited by racheld (log)

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Haven't read this in ten years but when I was a new cookbook reader The Frank Davis Seafood Notebook was a great find. I think the rec. are mostly cajun/creole seafood recipes. Davis is a local authority on Louisiana fishing, if I remember right....

Amazon page

from amazon.com:

"This is my kind of cooking book. It's not just a cookbook, but a textbook on seafood also. The first several chapters are just on purchacing, handling, and cooking techniques for many types of seafood. Then, the cookbook section is loaded with great recipes. Frank has a great personality. He's great to watch on tv here in New Orleans, and his humor and knowledge really come through."

"Written as a textbook of sorts, entirely in narrative script, this book actually teaches you how to cook seafood as opposed to how to follow just one singular recipe. It is chock full of valuable information dealing with culinary procedures, use and application of spices, techniques for preparing everything from boiled blue crabs to beer-battered alligator, and the only complete listing of every single fish that swims the waters of the Northern Gulf of Mexico and how to cook them! But the recipes themselves are special--not only unique to the famed cuisine of the Crescent City but so simple to follow and easy to prepare, both for the novice cook as well as the professional chef. It is truly one of those books a serious cook interested in preparing seafood the proper way needs to have on his or her bookshelves, and it is certainly one of those books you'll feel compelled to read from cover to cover for pure entertainment and enrichment."


Frau Farbissma: "It's a television commercial! With this cartoon leprechaun! And all of these children are trying to chase him...Hey leprechaun! Leprechaun! We want to get your lucky charms! Haha! Oh, and there's all these little tiny bits of marshmallow just stuck right in the cereal so that when the kids eat them, they think, 'Oh this is candy! I'm having fun!'"

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Frank Davis, Mr Naturally N'Awlins himself, has a website where The Seafood Notebook and many of his other books are available. You will also find many recipes here.

Frank is a "character" in the highest sense. Crazy New Orleans accent, says just about the first thing that comes to his mind, and is a generally really funny guy. I have a couple of his books, including an old copy of the Seafood Notebook, and I use them occasionally. There are some very good recipes in those books.


Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

There's a train everyday, leaving either way...

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At the risk of sounding self-serving, I think I've written a pretty good book. Creole Nouvelle: Contemporary Creole Cookery. Even if you are not fond of what I do in the book you cannot ignore the contributions from Susan Spicer, Anne Kearney, Donald Link, John Harris and Peter Vazquez. Here's an excerpt of a review from Restaurant Hospitality :

"Some Swell Nouvelle

Carey, a New Orleans native who now heads the Memphis Culinary Academy, has come up with a slick approach to cookbook writing here. This volume includes many traditional Creole recipes—Carey handles these himself—plus inventive takes on them from five top New Orleans chefs: Susan Spicer of Bayona; Peter Vasquez from Marisol; Anne Kearney, formerly of Peristyle; Donald Link of Herbsaint; and John Harris of Lilette.

There’s plenty of culinary firepower in this group, to be sure. But Carey’s got some cooking chops of his own, plus an enviable attitude about why Creole food needed some contemporizing by his distinguished friends.

Creole Nouvelle

"The best of the genre (original Creole) was to be found in restaurants owned or run by creative, professionally trained chefs who observed classical techniques, were emphatically not cooking in France or Spain or Italy, and used only the freshest ingredients with an eye to appearance and taste, as well as nutrition." Carey begins. "Unfortunately, what we have termed ‘Creole’ cuisine over the years has become kind of tired and banal. It has lost its innovative, eclectic verve. Repetition and imitation to curry favor with the tourist dollar was the whoop de jour. That era has come to an end, folks."

All in all, it’s quite a collection. And future cookbook authors take note: this book’s all-star cast approach is one worth exploring on other topics."

by RH Staff (editor@restaurant-hospitality.com)

And a couple of quotes from my peers:

"With Joseph Carey's amusing stories, scalding opinions and informed wit and information galore, what more could one want from a cookbook, except to open it up and start cooking? I look forward to doing just that and the sooner, the better."

Deborah Madison, Author of Local Flavors, Cooking and Eating from America's Farmers' Markets

"When I heard that Chef Joseph Carey was writing a book about a creative new style of cooking in New Orleans and environs, I thought, 'There's a match made in culinary heaven!"

Denis Kelly, James Beard Award Nominee and Author of Grilling & Barbecuing

As part of the discussion going on among the tourists over in this thread concerning Gumbo and the right way to make it, Kristin (a lovely and talented cook of many Cuisines who lives in Japan) announced that she has a ton of cookbooks and that NONE of them concern the subject of Louisiana Cuisine. Well, I gave her a short list of some that I would consider essential:

The Cotton Country Collection

This book, in my mind anyway, is the best collection of recipes ever assembled in Louisiana. Recipes from all over the state, Delta, Acadiana, German Coast, Piney Woods, and everywhere else. I have cooked damn near every recipe in the book over the years and there are no bad ones. The directions are great and the skill levels involved go from dead simple to you better have a grip on Julia's French Cooking.

River Road Recipes Great collection of recipes, with some of hthe best seafood collections I have ever seen.

The Encyclopedia of Cajun and Creole Cooking Get a copy of this book. Just go buy it. Send me a thank you note for telling you to do so.

Emeril's Real and Rustic This is the reason, ultimately, that I respect the guy. His first book and a great one.

I can go on with, literally dozens more, but I go on enough here. There are probably 20 Jr League type books that I would reccomend, along with the Times Picayune/Madame Begue's combo that is now sadly out of print-then there are the Church books and the NOPSI collection (New Orleans Public Service Incorporated used to collect recipes and stick them in utility bills and on the little holders on the streetcars-this ultimately turned into a great collection of recipes that has been published into a book).

Favorites? Reasons why?


Edited by ChefCarey (log)

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I just received a copy of Austin Leslie's book as a gift from the man himself. I haven't cooked from it yet, but it reads like listening to him talk and if I can make those corn muffins we had at Pampy's, Jason will be in heaven. I'll report back after I"ve made some of the recipes.

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I just picked up Los Islenos Cookbook Recipes from spanish Louisiana. Its about the heritage of the Canary island people in "Da Parish". Very Interesting totally different influence on Louisiana cooking that you dont hear of.


Gorganzola, Provolone, Don't even get me started on this microphone.---MCA Beastie Boys

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I just picked up Los Islenos Cookbook Recipes from spanish Louisiana.  Its about the heritage of the Canary island people in "Da Parish".  Very Interesting totally different influence on Louisiana cooking that you dont hear of.

Here is a little more information about those guys. It is a very interesting little sidebar in Louisiana history. I fish in Delacroix alot (except when it rains cats and dogs like it did this weekend) and really like that end of St Bernard Parish.

los islenos info

They just had their annual festival last weekend, and I know that they have a website for it, but I can't find it at the moment. I'll be on the lookout for a copy of that book.


Brooks Hamaker, aka "Mayhaw Man"

There's a train everyday, leaving either way...

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La Bouche Creole by Leon Soniat is easily my all-time favorite. The recipes are all very traditional and include all the classics: seafood gumbo, shrimp and crawfish etouffee, trout amandine, trout meuniere, oyster stew, several types of jambalaya, oysters Bienville, grillades, remoulade sauce, etc. His recipes for etouffee, redfish courtbouillon, and turtle soup are the best I've had anywhere. If you love to cook but do not have La Bouche Creole, do yourself a favor and order it as soon as possible. La Bouche Creole II is also good.

I like River Road Recipes I and II, although I haven't tried many of the recipes. I also like Talk About Good. I just got the Encyclopedia of Cajun and Creole Cuisine by John Folse but I'm not sure what I think of it just yet as I have not tried any of the recipes. My wife received the new Galatoire's cookbook as a gift and I like that one a lot. I usually don't like restaurant cookbooks but this one is great.

It does not come from Louisiana, but Recipe Jubilee by the Junior League of Mobile ranks right behind La Bouche Creole on my list of favorite cookbooks. I include it in this discussion because Mobile was part of French Louisiana (in fact, it was the first capital) and the folks there have been cooking so-called Louisiana food as long as any part of the state of Louisiana. Recipe Jubilee has recipes for this type of food that are every bit as authentic (albeit a little fancier) as the ones in River Road Recipes and Talk About Good. It has some great recipes for gumbo and the best compilation of seafood recipes I've found in any Junior League-type cookbook. It also has some great game recipes that rank right up there with Talk About Good. If you like the Junior League cookbooks from Louisiana, you should definitely get a copy of Recipe Jubilee.

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