New Southern Cooking

New Southern Cooking
by Nathalie Dupree
The University of Georgia Press, 2004

After more than a dozen printings between 1986 and 1999, Nathalie Dupree's classic cookbook has been reissued in a newly revised paperback edition that reflects the evolution of the "New Southern" cuisine that it helped create and popularize.

The first edition was compiled before Dupree's "New Southern Cooking" shows aired on television and before other authors started using the phrase "New Southern" in the titles to their cookbooks and restaurants began using it in their menus. The new edition is much the same as the first, except that it adds a few dishes like Shrimp and Grits and revises a few dated descriptions.

"New varieties of vegetables, such as baby beets and fingerling potatoes (both picked when they are young), are being cultivated and sold to restaurants and are thereby making their way into the mainstream. Arugula, both wild and cultivated, has been added to our kitchens, as have lemon grass and Charleston cilantro," Dupree points out.

"In many parts of the South, we've discovered, rosemary grows year round, and basil from March to December. Hot peppers also have changed with the years, both in variety and color, and I urge all readers of this book to be judicious with the measurements for them, because some are now hotter than those available at the time of this book's first printing."

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Muscadine and Scuppernong Grapes

     These are both meaty Southern grapes, the scuppernong being a variety of the muscadine. Muscadines are thick-skinned and dull purple in color. You usually eat them whole and spit out the seeds and skins. The fragrant sweet, juicy meat is worth the trouble. 

     Scuppernongs are silvery and amber-green, also with thick skins. They are named after a North Carolina river. Both grapes are made into jams, jellies, and wine.

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