What better way to celebrate southern culture and traditions than with a collection of simple comfort food recipes? From Cotton to Countdown is a modest nod to where the south has been, where it is going, and the delicious food that has always been an integral part of peoples’ lives in Huntsville, AL.
The book’s first chapter tells a story about how cotton was “King” in 1808, and how Huntsville’s economy depended on this crop. The first chapter shares classic recipes from this area: “Traditional Southern Classics,” if you will. Recipes for Five-Hour Beef Stew, Southern-Style Creamed Corn, Deep-South Corn Bread, and Chess Pie make anyone long for simpler times when recipes were short, the grocery store was not complicated, and people shared time together after Sunday services.
From Cotton to Countdown tells other stories, such as that of Huntsville native Tallulah Bankhead, the toast of the London theatre in the 1920s, the watercress that grew in the region and is now shipped all over the world, and the technological advances that came out of the area’s industries.
The stories are enjoyable, but the recipes in this simply-designed cookbook are absolutely what stand out. The Cocktail Puffs with Chicken Pecan Filling sounds like one of those appetizers that you might want to make twice for parties as they’ll go fast.
A fan of any sort of chicken salad, the book has a recipe for Avocado Chicken Salad and Covington’s Signature Chicken Salad. Both sound like they would never get old in a pita or on a piece of toast for lunch every day.
The Smoky Shrimp with Peppers and Creamy Cheese Grits calls for Gouda cheese in the grits: the shrimp is cooked with Canadian bacon, bell peppers, tomatoes and green chiles.
Perhaps most exciting of all is the recipe for Out-of-this-world Macaroni and Cheese. The recipe calls for Sharp Cheddar, Gruyére, Swiss, and Brie, along with a little half-and-half and heavy cream. Move over Blue Box: you have nothing on these cheesy noodles.
From Cotton to Countdown: A culinary celebration of Southern Tradition (ISBN 978-0-9815748-0-6; $24.95) was published by the Ladies Association of Madison Academy. Proceeds from the sales of this cookbook will provide support for the ongoing educational endeavors of Madison Academy, a K-12 Christian school in Huntsville, AL.
From Cotton to Countdown was edited, designed, and produced by Community Classics, a sister-imprint to Favorite Recipes Press: both of which are imprints of FRP Books, Inc.
Since 1961, Favorite Recipes Press has helped community groups, non-profits, and independent publishers create, design, edit, manufacture, distribute, and market award-winning cookbooks. Learn more at www.frpbooks.com.