The Lee Bros. Simple Fresh Southern by Matt Lee and Ted Lee

January 01, 2010
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Simple Fresh Southern

Matt and Ted Lee — of boiled peanuts for sale online fame — are self-professed evangelists of Southern food. Longtime supporters of the Southern Foodways Alliance and regular contributors to Travel + Leisure and Martha Stewart Living, their new cookbook, Simple Fresh Southern, follows their James Beard award-winning The Lee Bros. Southern Cookbook — and is filled with recipes you’ll make again and again. The recipes are everything the title says — simple, fresh, and Southern.

The “hot sides” chapter alone is reason enough to get the book. Roasted Parsnips with Mint, Smoked Cauliflower, Toasted Rice and Peas Hoppin’ John, Pimento Cheese Potato Gratin, and Collard Greens with Poblano Chiles and Chorizo all sound lovely enough to forget the center of the plate (the protein) and just have side dishes for dinner.

I love it when the recipes in a cookbook have interesting little tweaks to common recipes and Simple Fresh Southern has plenty. Rice Pudding Pops, Greens and Eggs Migas, Mushroom and Okra Purloo, and an Ambrosia Salad that is fresh and colorful instead of the white gooey stuff I’ve had all my life.

But the hands-down favorite recipe is Buttermilk Fresh Cheese and 11 Delicious Things to Do with It. I get asked all the time about how to make cheese. So for everyone who asks, here’s how…go buy Simple Fresh Southern and turn to page 93.

As my love of all things pickled was already mentioned, I’m off to try out Pickled Grapes with Rosemary and Chiles.

The Lee Bros. Simple Fresh Southern
Knockout Dishes with Down-Home Flavor By Matt Lee and Ted Lee Clarkson Potter Publishers, 2009, $35

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