Friday, December 19, 2014

Recipe Weekend / Cookbook Review: A Louisiana Christmas: Heritage Recipes and Hometown Celebrations By Carol Stubbs and Nancy Rust


Disclosure / Disclaimer: I received this book, free of charge, from Pelican Publishing, for review purposes on this blog. No other compensation, monetary or in kind, has been received or implied for this post. Nor was I told how to post about it

christmas reindeer scary

And now for a book that will not only bring you some great Louisiana recipes this holiday season, but shared the holiday culture of Louisiana with you!


Synopsis:

The holidays in Louisiana feature a stunning array of festivities and events. Good food, music, and camaraderie abound. This volume takes readers on a statewide tour of les fêtes de Noël and provides recipes and activities for the whole family. From the lighting of the bonfire at Oak Alley Plantation to Natchitoches’s Festival of Lights, experience the living culture that the Pelican State has to offer. After a tour of the local entertainment, gather up friends and family and enjoy some of the delicious appetizers, sweet and savory breads, entrées, and desserts included in this beautifully photographed collection.

Separated into geographical sections, this book takes readers on a tour of traditions and happenings in Cajun Country, Sportsman’s Paradise, the Crossroads, Plantation Country, and Greater New Orleans. Contact information is included, along with a description of each festivity. Featured are photographs of the exquisite Hanley-Gueno Neapolitan Presepio Nativity figures, crafted in the eighteenth century. More than one hundred fifty recipes cover every course for every get-together. Family-friendly crafts and activities will keep adults and children celebrating the season all winter long.


Review

This small book is a bounty of recipes and information about Louisiana, and our holiday traditions! The book starts with a quick look at the different regions in Louisiana and their annual holiday events, which are a result of their cultural heritage. Then the book covers Appetizers, Breads, Soups and Salads, Vegetables and Dressings (aka Stuffing to you Yankees), Meat, Desserts, Special Menus (like Game Day and Revillon), and then Beverages and Condiments/Sauces. Interspersed in the recipe section are little notes about Louisiana and the traditions that influenced the recipes. Then there is a chapter about how to share the joy of Christmas with your family, including making snowflakes, making and using Advent wreaths, and making butter in a jar! That last one is super fun for kids! The index is also handy for finding recipes. 

This is a great book that has SO many recipes that we use all year round! I was quite pleased to see how many recipes were from the Acadian/French traditions, and I was happy to find my grandmother's syrup cake recipe, that she had never written down! The recipes are not over involved, and even beginning cooks will have a great time with this book! I highly recommend it for your own cookbook shelf, AND for giving to everyone on your holiday list! It would also be a great hostess present! 

And now for the syrup cake recipe, which would be perfect for brunch Christmas morning, or for Christmas Eve snacking!

Gateau Sirop- Syrup Cake

syrup cake recipe

While Louisiana cooks use Cane Syrup, my grandmother used to use fresh tapped Maple Syrup, that her uncle sent from new Hampshire. So don't be afraid to use which ever syrup you have on hand- but don't use a light version, as you need the thickness.

ENJOY!.

About the Authors:

Carol Stubbs, a freelance writer for more than thirty years, earned her bachelor’s degree in journalism from Louisiana State University and her master’s in education from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. She was an editor of Acadiana LifeStyle for three years and was the longtime editor of a bi-annual bridal guide. A former teacher, Stubbs regularly contributes to local publications and tourism guides.

Nancy Rust taught reading for twenty-five years in Kentucky, Florida, Louisiana, and Arizona. She received her bachelor’s degree in English from Western Kentucky University and her master’s and specialist degrees in education from Louisiana State University. Rust has written several children’s books, is an accomplished poet, and has had fiction published in the Jubilee Anthology.
Stubbs and Rust are members of the Writers’ Guild of Acadiana, Friends of the Library, Friends of the Humanities, and the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators and are active volunteers and teachers through Volunteer Instructors Teaching Adults. They both live near Lafayette, Louisiana, with their families.

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