Episode 44 l Celebrate the 4th with Barbecue Cookbooks
Episode 44 l Celebrate the 4th with Barbecue Cookbooks

Hello and Happy 4th of July. Welcome to another episode of the podcast. Today we are talking about barbecue! Barbecue and July 4th go hand in hand. On this episode of the podcast I talk about how our family is connected to a long-standing barbecue tradition, the difference between grilling and barbecue, some favorite barbecue cookbooks in my collections, and a recipe for Sweet Bourbon Baked Beans from the Kentucky Fresh Cookbook.

Sweet Bourbon-baked Beans

Makes 12 servings

From Kentucky Fresh Cookbook by Maggie Green. I use vegetarian baked beans, but any variety of canned pork (baked) and beans works fine. To make without the bourbon, use 1/2 cup vinegar.

1/2 pound (8 ounces) bacon, cut into 1/4-inch thin strips

3 cups canned vegetarian baked beans (one 28-ounce can)

1 1/2 cups cooked or canned baby lima beans, drained (one 15-ounce can)

1 1/2 cups cooked or canned butter beans, drained (one 15-ounce can)

1 1/2 cups cooked or canned red beans, drained (one 15-ounce can)

1 large onion, chopped (about 2 cups)

3/4 cup brown sugar

1/4 cup Kentucky bourbon

1/4 cup apple cider vinegar

1/2 teaspoon dry mustard powder

Place bacon strips in a large skillet over medium heat. Stir and cook until crisp. Remove bacon to drain on a paper-towel-lined plate. Pour all of the bacon grease out of the skillet except for about 2 tablespoons. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350°F. Spray a 13 x 9 x 2-inch baking dish with non-stick cooking spray. Stir together the baked beans, lima beans, and red beans in the prepared dish. In the bacon grease, cook the onions over medium heat until golden, about 10 minutes. Add the brown sugar, bourbon, and vinegar, stirring to dissolve the sugar and scrape any brown bits off the bottom of the skillet. Let cook for 1 minute. Pour the bourbon-sugar sauce over beans and stir to combine. Sprinkle with crisp bacon bits. Bake for 1 hour until bubbly and the juice has thickened.

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Episode 35 l Celebrate Kentucky Derby with Kentucky Cookbooks
Episode 35 l Celebrate Kentucky Derby with Kentucky Cookbooks

Welcome back to this week’s episode of the Cookbook Love Podcast. Today I am excited to share with you an episode on Kentucky Cookbooks. This episode holds a special place in my heart and life because I was born and raised in Kentucky, and because the Kentucky Derby was always a sporting event that was celebrated by our family. So in today’s episode I share more about Kentucky’s literary tradition, what the Kentucky Derby is, how the Kentucky Derby is celebrated, and a discussion of my favorite Kentucky cookbooks.

Listen to Episode 35 below:

Things We Mention In This Episode:

Here’s How To Subscribe

I’d love for you to get notified when I release new episodes so you don’t miss any new episodes Click here to subscribe to the podcast in iTunes.

How to Leave a Review:

And, I’d love for you to leave a rating and review. I want to know what you think of the podcast and how I can make this podcast one you love to listen to and share with your friends. Plus,  iTunes tells me that podcast reviews are really important and the more reviews the podcast has the easier it will be to get the podcast in front of more people, which is the ultimate goal. You can leave a review for the podcast here. 

Let’s Keep The Conversation Going…

Do you have an idea for a cookbook concept?

Would you like to know more about writing cookbooks?

Do you collect cookbooks and want to be interviewed on the show?

Comment below and share your story or visit me on Instagram which is currently my favorite way to connect outside of the Cookbook Love Podcast Facebook Group

A Taste of Kentucky Cookbook: Behind the Scenes
A Taste of Kentucky Cookbook: Behind the Scenes

Last week, I began the testing phase of recipes for my next cookbook A Taste of Kentucky: Favorite Recipes from The Bluegrass State (Farcountry Press 2016). For this project I have the good fortune of collaborating with a talented Kentucky photographer named Sarah Jane. Our Tuesday session was great fun. I cooked, while she chased the light around my house and photographed the finished dishes.

The photographed pancakes are Buttermilk Pancakes with Whipped Bourbon Vanilla Butter from The Red River Rockhouse in Campton, KY. This is one example of a recipe we worked on last week. While shooting this particular photo, Sarah Jane instructed me to pour a thin stream of syrup onto the pancakes. While I poured, she took pictures of the syrup stream flowing onto the pancakes. It was a beautiful shot. Just for fun, she also shot this picture of the resulting puddle of syrup around the pancakes. I call this Buttermilk Pancakes en Dolce Brodo (in sweet broth).

A Taste of Kentucky should be a beautiful and delicious cookbook with close to 100 recipes from the best chefs, restaurants, inns, food producers, and writers across Kentucky. While you wait for this book, I share a pancake recipe from The Kentucky Fresh Cookbook. Try to control yourself with the syrup.

Mile-High Buttermilk Pancakes
Makes about eighteen 4-inch pancakes

Not made from a mix, these pancakes are a soft, fluffy, rather tall pancake. Vary the size if desired. For a 6-inch pancake use 1/2 cup of batter, for a 5-inch pancake use 1/3 cup batter, and for a 4-inch pancake use 1/4 cup batter, and for silver dollar pancakes, or pancakes the tiny size of a silver dollar coin, use a tablespoon to portion out the batter.

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
2 cups plus 2 tablespoons buttermilk
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter, melted 

In a large bowl stir together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. In another bowl, mix together the eggs, buttermilk, and melted butter. Make a hole in the center of the flour mixture and pour in the buttermilk mixture. Mix the dry ingredients together until the ingredients are blended, but not smooth. Let stand for 5 minutes. Heat griddle over medium-high heat until water flicked on the surface beads up and dances around. Use a 1/4-cup measure to scoop the batter onto the griddle. Cook about 3 minutes or until bubbles form on the surface of the batter, the edges look dry, and the bottom of the pancake is lightly browned. Turn the pancake and continue to cook until the other side of the pancake is browned, about 2 more minutes. Serve immediately or keep warm in the oven with warm maple syrup.…

We Almost Have A Cookbook
We Almost Have A Cookbook
The Kentucky Fresh Cookbook files were sent to the printer today. Said files are now in the hands of capable professionals (in Michigan no less) who turn words and images into a beautiful bound books. I think I’ll die when I see a copy of the book in April. In the mean time I’m not sitting around twiddling my thumbs. Instead I’m scheduling book signings, events, and promotions so I can get “out there” and talk about, cook from, and discuss the book. In the end I hope The Kentucky Fresh Cookbook makes better fresh home cooks out of us all. If you would like for me to come to an event near you, please let me know.

I’ll kick off my promotion with the following events:

Friday, April 15, 2011
Kentucky Writers Conference
You Can Write A Cookbook: Essential Ingredients For Success
Bowling Green, Kentucky
Friday, April 16, 2011
Southern Kentucky Book Festival
Bowling Green, Kentucky

Speaking of cookbooks: Cookbook circulation in libraries is at an all time high and last year print cookbook sales were up 9% more than any other genre of print books (except entertaining.) There’s never been a better time to write a book of your own. Very soon I plan to officially announce a series of teleclasses on writing cookbooks. If you dream of writing a cookbook stay tuned for more information about this exciting opportunity. I’ll draw upon my experiences as a cookbook reader, editor, and author to guide would-be cookbook authors through essential ingredients for a successful cookbook.

Kentucky Burgoo Recipe
Kentucky Burgoo Recipe

Makes about 12 servings

It’s that time of year. It’s Burgoo time. What I mean is: Keeneland is open. Keeneland serves Burgoo. It’s almost Derby Week. Everyone who celebrates Kentucky’s national holiday (the Kentucky Derby, the first Saturday in May) think s Burgoo. (And mint juleps, but that’s another story.) I created this recipe on a snowy day in March. It’s not a quick recipe, but one where you first make a broth using beef, lamb, and dark-meat chicken pieces. Then you cook the vegetables in the broth and add the cooked meat. The two-step process ensures tender meat and nicely cooked vegetables. It’s even better reheated, so feel free to make this recipe ahead, and reheat before serving. Incidentally, if you’ve ever wanted to attend a Burgoo Festival, make plans for September 2009.

1 pound beef shank
1 pound boneless leg of lamb
3 to 3 1/2 pounds chicken legs or thighs
1 tablespoon salt
3 quarts water
2 cups finely chopped onion
4 cloves garlic, minced
3 cups frozen mixed vegetables, or 2 (15-ounce) cans mixed vegetables, drained
One 15-ounce can butter beans, drained
8 ounces frozen sliced okra
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
Generous pinch red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 cup chopped fresh parsley 

Trim excess fat from beef shank and lamb. Place the beef, lamb, and chicken pieces in a 6-quart Dutch oven. Add salt and water. Bring to a boil over high heat, skimming off any foam that rises to the surface. Reduce heat, partially cover, and simmer for 45 minutes. Remove the chicken pieces to a plate. Partially cover again, and contine to cook over low heat until the beef and lamb are fork-tender, about 1  1/2 more hours. Remove the beef and lamb to the plate with the chicken. Let the broth cool slightly. Strain and measure the broth. Add water if necessary to make 6 cups. Wipe the sides of the oven with a paper towel to remove any remaining skum or foam reside. It’s not pretty to get this stuff in your stew. So wipe it off and save yourself from having to use another pot, or wash this one.

Pour the 6 cups of broth (and perhaps the broth/water mixture) back into the Dutch oven. Stir in the onion, garlic, mixed vegetables, butter beans, okra, Worcestershire sauce, red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper. Bring to a simmer. Meanwhile, remove the chicken meat from the bones and set aside. Cut the beef and lamb into 1-inch pieces and set aside with the chicken, and if necessary refrigerating the meat until the vegetables have cooked for 1  hour. After 1 hour of cooking the vegetables,  stir the chicken and meat pieces into the cooked vegetables. Simmer until heated through. Stir in the parsley, and season to taste with salt and pepper.…

Silver Dollar Corncakes
Silver Dollar Corncakes

These tender, tiny cakes are simple to prepare, and disappear off the platter.

Makes twenty four 2-inch cakes

3/4 cup yellow or white cornmeal
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup buttermilk
1 large egg
1/4 cup melted butter or canola oil

In a medium bowl stir together the cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Mix together the buttermilk, egg, and melted butter or oil. Add the milk mixture to the cornmeal mixture and stir to combine. Preheat a griddle or non-stick skillet until hot. Using a 1 tablespoon measuring spoon, portion out the batter onto the hot griddle or skillet. Cook until bubbles open up on the surface of the cake and the bottom is golden brown. Working quickly, flip the cakes and continue to cook until the other side golden brown. Keep warm in a 200°F oven if necessary until ready to serve.…

Kentucky Produce
Kentucky Produce


It was the perfect weather morning to go to the Farmer’s Market. Around 8 am I took off with my trio of helpers, and we arrived very soon thereafter at the Covington Farmer’s Market in Main Strasse. We scored a bunch of stunning cut sunflowers, cilantro (that hadn’t yet bolted), a few zucchini, green beans, green bell peppers and peaches (from Georgia). Since I really wanted tomatoes, we next drove out to the Boone County Farmer’s Market. The tomatoes were ripe, and according to one farmer, “flying off his table”. I purchased some pink pear, yellow tiny cherry, and smaller red and yellow tomatoes, blackberries, okra, a purple bell pepper and some dwarf perinneals for my garden. We’re having a dinner party tomorrow evening. I can safely say “homegrown” Kentucky produce will shine. Roasted vegetables with fresh mozzarella over rigatoni, fresh bean salad, black bean and corn salsa, and a peach and blackberry crostata are just a few dishes I have in mind.…