Cover Image: Southern Grit

Southern Grit

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Member Reviews

Southern Grit: 100+ Down-Home Recipes for the Modern Cook by Kelsey Barnard Clark is a beautiful cookbook filled with mouthwatering recipes! I can’t wait to try the bomb nachos, buttermilk biscuits, cream cheese pound cake, and peach sangrias. #SouthernGrit #NetGalley
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⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ -- All kinds of yummy!

As someone who loves to cook and has annoyingly picky eaters as offspring (😂), I am always looking for new and interesting meal ideas. Enter SOUTHERN GRIT. First off, this was a beautifully illustrated book. It was full of gorgeous photos and visually appealing typography. A very important part of any cookbook (IMO). It was also choked full of information on stocking a southern pantry, tools to have on hand, canning 101, and basic cooking vocab.  🙌🏻

The recipes themselves were well laid out and with easy to follow instructions. Many include variations and notes.  I have only gotten around to trying a handful of the recipes (Chicken Liver Pâté and Fig Jam -- AMAZING, Papa Karl’s German Potato Salad -- AMAZING, Bacon, Spinach, and Mushroom Quiche -- YUMMY, and Mom’s Carrot Cake -- MY carrot cake loving daughter was in HEAVEN). 

Honestly, so many recipes caught my eye that I can see this cookbook becoming one of my favorites! 🙌🏻

**ARC Via NetGalley**
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I love cookbooks and cooking especially southern food and especially when they are written by a TOP CHEF winner like Kelsey Barnard Clark.

This cookbook is a must for every cooks kitchen. Who among us doesn't like Southern style nachos, peach sangria, icebox cookies plus all of the standards like fried chicken, cheese grits and buttermilk biscuits.

The photos are beautiful but I hate that there aren't pictures of every recipe.

There is a wealth of information about pantry ingredients, basic tips on prep and entertaining.
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This one is a miss for me. "Southern Grit" is filled with great photography and has gorgeous fonts and layouts, but is just too inaccessible. The recipes are on the formal side and many require a significant list of unique ingredients. What really turned me away though, was all the extra commentary on homemaking and hosting. It was rather condescending and struck me as out of touch. 

I would only recommend this to people interested in very Southern and rather fancy cooking.

Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for the eARC.
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Kelsey Barnard Clark was a great competitor on Top Chef, sharing her Southern charm and recipes to a television audience. Capitalizing on her popularity, the chef recently released a cookbook called Southern Grit: 100+ Down-Home Recipes for the Modern Cook.

The introductory chapter gives readers information on essential pantry and refrigerator ingredients, tools, knife skills, canning information, and entertaining helps. There are tips and hints for readers and a few pictures to inspire and entice. The classic Southern dishes have modern twists, so those looking to bring down-home dishes into the present will like this cookbook.

The following are the recipe sections, with some of the standout dishes.

Happy Hour Bites & Sips: Classic Boiled Peanuts; Bomb Nachos; Homemade Salsa; Meyer Lemonade

Greens: BLT Butter Bean Salad; Cornbread Panzanella Salad; Street Corn

Potatoes, Grains & Pasta: Smashed Crispy Potatoes; Dirty Rice; Potlikker Field Pea Risotto

Seafood: Po'boys with Remoulade; Cornmeal Catfish with Green Goddess Dressing

Eggs & Poultry: Breakfast Casserole; Roasted Chicken and Drippin' Veggies; Bama's Chicken Pot Pie

Pork & Beef: Girl Boss Steak with Confit Onions and Mushrooms; Rosemary and Garlic Pork Tenderloin; Pot Roast and Leftover French Dip Sandwiches

Breads & Pastries: OG Buttermilk Biscuits; Golf Cart Cinnamon Rolls; Key Lime Crunch; Stairway Red Velvet Cake

Overall, there are a lot of great recipes in this cookbook, though I wish there were more photographs of the completed dishes. Readers who like Southern cooking will enjoy the updates to some of their favorite dishes.
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I love TopChef so I was thrilled to stumble across this cookbook. Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for my ARC. As a southern girl myself I found this cookbook to be filled with practical and delicious recipes for everyday life and the average home chef. I appreciate the organized table of contents at the beginning of the cookbook as many cookbooks lack this kind of layout! The cocktail section is amazing too. I can't wait to make the pepper jelly and pepper jelly brussel sprouts to enjoy with gameday this weekend.
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I'm not Southern enough for the recipes in this book, y'all.  Photography was excellent, though.

I received a copy through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
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This was a good cookbook of Southern favorites.  I loved Kelsey, the author, on Top Chef, she was so creative and this book reflects her personality.  I loved the pictures too, the ones of the food and also pictures of family and friends, and houses and rooms decorated in Southern style.

I want to try these recipes - squash casserole, baked cheese grits, baptism quiche, rosemary and garlic pork tenderloin, icebox cookies, and key lime crunch.  They all sound delicious!  4 stars.

Thanks to the publisher and NetGalley I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
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Southern Grit is a must have for your cookbook collection from Top Chef winner and Food Network Star. ! Aesthetically pleasing, approachable recipe these recipes will bring you back to the kitchen. I was amazed by the amount of recipes and loved reading the sentimental notes throughout the cookbook. Looking for a gift for a new bride or friend buy them this cookbook. Lisa
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Southern Grit by Kelsey Barnard Clark is a free NetGalley ebook that I read in early August.

Against white clapboard and painted stucco surfaces, dark wood, polished metal, linen, small pops of porcelain blue, yellows, and reds, there are recipes for appetizers, drinks, veg, starches, seafood, chicken & eggs, meats, breads, and sweets that evoke the classic South, but with flavor tweaks, like fresh greens and herbs, spicy heat, and a vinegar zing.
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Pros: What first caught my attention about this book was its title--I live in the south and loved seeing a cookbook dedicated to southern food. (Once I started reading, I loved that the dedication is to generations of women, because food is important to southern women!) What made me want to read this book is the author--I loved her season of Top Chef (and she's a Chi Omega). The photography in this book is lovely, and I appreciate when cookbooks have lots of photos of the food because that gives me a guide to see if my cooking attempt is on track. Another thing I appreciate in cookbooks is when the recipes are accessible to cooks with all levels of experience and when the recipes call for ingredients that can be found at any (southern) grocery store--this cookbook does both. While reading, I kept a list of recipes I want to try--smashed crispy potatoes, smoked gouda grits, baked cheese grits, baked corn grits, rosemary focaccia, buttermilk biscuits  . . . really all the carbs! I also always like a new breakfast casserole to try, and the rosemary and garlic pork tenderloin sounds delicious. Oh and a southern cookbook wouldn't be complete without a red velvet cake recipe! 

Cons: None that I can think of--this book offers a great variety of southern cooking!

Thank you to NetGalley and Chronicle Books for the opportunity to read this cookbook!
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This cookbook had some really great recipes.  The recipes were easy to understand and not too complicated for the average cook.  I enjoyed the illustrations and look forward to making these recipes for years to come.
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Pretty pictures but that's about it. Yall I'm from New Orleans and this is book ain't it. It's full of fancy schmancy, frou frou recipes that will cost a fortune to put together. That's not how Southern cooking is supposed to work.
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I love cookbooks, and I liked this one. I'm not familiar with the author, and I think her fans will enjoy this more than I did. The photography was beautiful, and like many modern cookbooks, I think we could have a few less family and background photos and more food photos.

There's quite a bit of "filler" up front. I think the tone was supposed to be sassy but came off kind of judgmental. The filler section includes some unnecessary sections on:
1. House cleaning rules: even if I agree with some of it, it's brash. Any good southern woman knows it's more important to have space for friends to gather than for it to be spotless. Also, I would never use a spray on my stove, but maybe hers isn't gas.
2. Hostess tips: I kind of get why this might be included in a southern cookbook, but I'm not keeping beverages stocked for people who might come by. (But I will stock some things for guests I am expecting.) My friends know I don't drink juice boxes or soda; if ya picky, bring your own.
3. Houseplants: C'mon. No.

There is a very good section on knife cuts and "vocab" (that's vocabulary related to cooking.) And I laughed at the "Bacon" in the well-stocked pantry section. The recipes look interesting but I don't think this is for the beginner cook, and some recipes might be hard to work with for people outside her region of the south.
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It is way too easy to fall in love with Kelsey Barnard Clark's Southern Grit. From the design to the selection and organization of recipes, the Top Chef winner takes the reader into her version of Southern Hospitality with recipes that feed your family, your friends, your soul. I think my heart started to flutter at the opening advice sequence - the crafting of routines to simplify your everyday life to make time for cooking real and delicious food. See, this hits my theory that a good cookbook is approachable and offers achievable outcomes - small victories for combining ingredients and following directions. Southern Grit is a great cookbook because you will feel like a winner as soon as you start cooking or taking a tip from a woman who shows you how it is done - how to be prepared for successful cooking and entertaining. With pruners in her car for emergency floral cuttings and cocktail napkins stashed away for any celebration, KBC is prepared. Pantry items secured and mise en place set, everything falls into place. 

This is a must-buy cookbook with seasonal recipes and reminders to get ready for every moment of your life. You don't want to miss out on making memories or spending time with those you love, and making these recipes will inspire traditions. And here's the best part - and I will swear to this on a stack of first edition books signed by the author - KBC's cornbread recipe is the best I have ever baked. The food in this book is extraordinary. I'll say it again - KBC's Southern Grit is approachable and delicious.
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Southern Grit: 100+ Down-Home Recipes for the Modern Cook is a cookbook full of southern (American) traditional recipes developed and curated by Kelsey Barnard Clark. Due out 10th Aug 2021 from Chronicle Books, it's 256 pages and will be available in hardcover and ebook formats. 

I grew up in Appalachia and this food is in my DNA. There is something so deeply satisfying and tasty about the cuisine which is also tied up for me with family reunions, hospitality, multi-generational cooking and comfort.  The author has a very casual voice and style of writing, but behind the (slightly) folksy tone, she's competent and efficient. These are *good* recipes, some from her own family's repertoire and for fans of southern cooking, there's a lot to like here.

The book includes a good general pantry, ingredients, and equipment lists and an introduction with basic tips for preparation, entertaining, and other hostess-y necessities. The intro section comprises about 15% of the total page count but does include a lot of useful info. The recipes are arranged in chapters thematically: small bites & drinks, greens (including a simple quick pickled salad which I remember very well from my grandmother's kitchen), potatoes grains & pasta, seafood, eggs & poultry, pork & beef, and breads & pastries. Recipes include a description yields and prep time. Ingredients are listed bullet style in a sidebar with measurements in American standard units with metric measures in parentheses (yay!!). Ingredients will be readily available in most well stocked grocery stores in North America. Nutritional information is not included. Alternative preparations and cooking tips are included in highlighted text bars in the recipes. Many of the recipes struck me as just that little bit fancier than "everyday" and would make good company/light entertaining, Sunday dinner type food.

The photography throughout the book is abundant, in color, and crystal clear. Serving suggestions are attractive and appetizing. 

Four stars. This would make a good selection for library acquisition, expat southerners hankering for food that feeds their souls, and home cooks looking for new cuisine to explore.

Disclosure: I received an ARC at no cost from the author/publisher for review purposes.
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Despite the subtitle, the recipes in Southern Grit seem to me to be a little more upscale Southern than "down-home". Still, there are a lot of delicious choices here… from appetizers like Pimiento Cheese and Cheese Straws to entrees like Roast Chicken and Quiche and desserts (of course!) like Icebox Cookies and Cream Cheese Pound Cake. The book is beautifully illustrated with color photos, but as a visual person, it’s always a little disappointing that every recipe does not have at least a photograph of the finished product. There’s no nutritional info, but southern food never promised to be healthy. It’s nice that Southern Grit’s recipes do not rely on processed foods. The beginning of the book, with its cleaning, hosting hints, and plant care seems a bit pretentious and out of place in a cookbook. But I did like the inclusion of the knife skills, kitchen tools, and canning sections, which offered a lot of useful info.

I am so grateful to NetGalley and Chronicle Books for the opportunity to read and review Southern Grit: 100+ Down Home Recipes for the Modern Cook.
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One thing I'm always concerned with in a Cookbook with 'Southern' anywhere in the title is "How much butter will be in these recipes?".

The good news here is that there is about the normal amount of butter used for traditional home cooking recipes. So that's good.

The photographs in the book are simply gorgeous!  Exactly what you would think of for a Southern Home photo shoot.  I wish my house and gardens and cooking looked just like these photos! I'm simply in love with them.

I also enjoyed the way this cookbook is laid out and all of the helpful hints at the beginning. Showing what different chops (small, large) look like, providing examples and explanations of cooking terms, recommendations for the best cooking tools and such.  All really helpful.

Now on to the recipes.

For the most part, the ingredients are mostly things that you have on hand (except maybe chicken livers-yuck!) or can easily get at the grocery store. Always a plus.

The recipes are easy to read and follow and there doesn't look to be any difficult techniques that need to be mastered.

The best way I can describe these recipes is that they remind me of dishes that would be served in a big ole' Southern Plantation House.  I can imagine a huge table, with lots of family around and dishes-a-plenty all throughout the table.  These are fancier type of dishes and are what I would think of as old-fashioned Southern Dishes.

Nothing at all wrong with that but just not my style of cooking or eating.  But I can totally get down with the dessert section!!

If fancy Southern dishes are what you like to eat, then this Cookbook should definitely be in your collection as it is simply beautiful!

Thank you to #Chronicle and #NetGalley for making this book available for review. All opinions expressed are my own.
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The cookbook provides a variety of recipes.  I am looking forward to some of the breakfast selections for sure.  There are many southern staples and some hints/tricks for canning.  In Southern Grit, Kelsey Barnard Clark presents more than 100 recipes that are made to be shared with family and friends. Indulge your loved ones in delicious modern Southern meals, including Bomb Nachos, Savannah Peach Sangria, Roasted Chicken and Drippin' Veggies, and six variations of Icebox Cookies.   There are 100 recipes in all. Just a few of these are Alabama Salad with Cucumber Skin Green Goddess Dressing; Smoke Gouda Grits with Redeye Gravy; Girl Boss Steak with Confit Onions and Mushrooms; and Beeb’s Blackberry Cobbler.  The photographs in the book are simply gorgeous!  Exactly what you would think of for a Southern Home photo shoot.  

If you are looking for some southern cooking you could give this one a try.

Thank you to #Chronicle and #NetGalley for making this book available for review
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Having followed Kelsey Barnard Clark for a few years, I was pleased to see this cookbook come through. The recipes are straightforward without a great number of specialty ingredients, and the narratives that accompany each recipe are worth reading.

At times, KBC's stories and narratives surprised me - in a good way - such as her forceful and honest comments about the history of slavery and the importance of African American food traditions and history, which accompany the recipe she shares for potlikker (along with a recommendation to the reader to refer to Edna Lewis and Dora Charles). I appreciate that she made an effort to center lived experience that she learned from.

This would make a valuable addition to any collection for people who want to learn to cook straightforward Southern food.
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