The Best American Cookbooks

Find our top 7 picks for the best American cookbooks of the past 25 years.

Screen Doors and Sweet Tea
Photo: Randy Mayor

Screen Doors and Sweet Tea

Screen Doors and Sweet Tea By Martha Hall Foose, Clarkson Potter Publishers, 2008. Hardcover. $32.50; 248 pages

Martha Hall Foose, a French-trained Mississippi cook who returned home, delivers real Southern charm in this rare combination of amusing read and great cookbook. Foose relates that one day, as a girl, she reported to her grade-school class that her family was Scotch-Irish. Her best friend Lenore Anne replied, "Well, if she's Scotch-Irish, I guess that makes my side of the family bourbon and water." The tone is quirky but not strained. Recipes range from "best in the Delta" sweet tea to Refuge Crawfish Pies ("For Shade Seekers") and Commitment Caramel Cake ("For Committing Someone to the Church, Marriage, or the Ground").

GIVE THIS TO: Anyone who enjoys Southern wit and food. —Julianna Grimes

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