In his cookbook debut, P. Allen Smith, America’s best-known gardener and garden designer, celebrates the bounty of each season with recipes of flavorful fruits, vegetables, and herbs at their garden-fresh best.
P. Allen Smith’s Seasonal Recipes from the Garden features 120 recipes: 30 for each season. These are dishes that everyone loves to eat. Taking delicious advantage of ingredients as accessible as bell peppers and carrots and as beloved as fresh peaches and tomatoes, the recipes are Allen’s favorites, most from his own kitchen and some adapted from family and friends. They are perfect for those who garden as well as anyone who simply enjoys fresh food. They include:
SPRING: Chilled Pea Soup with Bacon and Whipped Cream; Grilled Salmon Sandwich with Lemon-Dill Mayo; Salad of Asparagus, Edamame, Arugula, and Cheese; Radish Top Pasta; Speckled Strawberry Ice Cream
SUMMER: Savory Grit Cakes with Oven-Smoked Tomatoes; Zucchini and Lemon Salad; Aunt Martha’s Corn Pudding; Rosemary-Garlic Smoked Pork Tenderloin; Peach Moon Tart
FALL: Parmesan Pecan Crisps; Roasted Red Pepper Soup; Citrus-Glazed Turkey Breast; Goat Cheese and Leek Tart; Allen’s Favorite Sweet Potato Pie
WINTER: Cranberry Spice Cocktail; Slow-Cooker Lamb Stew; Savory Rosemary Butternut Squash; Tiny Orange Muffins; Old-Fashioned Blackberry Jam Cake
The recipes, many of which are Southern-inflected, include delightful personal stories, full of Allen’s much-loved wit and charm. All-American Blueberry Muffins evoke memories of him and his siblings roaming the woods searching for wild berries; Lady Peas with Red Tomato Relish reminds him of shelling peas with Ma Smith in his grandparents’ kitchen after supper; and Blue Cheese and Onion Cornbread conjures up the great sweet-versus-unsweet Southern cornbread debate.
Allen offers cooking tips as well as advice on selecting fresh vegetables. There is also a how-to guide with basic gardening suggestions for growing the best varieties of produce. If you are new to gardening edibles, you’ll learn that you should consider starting with zucchini (the most “overachieving” of vegetables) and herbs (a windowsill gives you all the space you need).
So, as Allen says of gardening and eating, those well-matched passions, “Dig in!”