Marcia Adams' Heirloom Recipes: Yesterday's Favorites, Tomorrow's Treasures

Marcia Adams, Author, Raymond Bial, Photographer Clarkson N Potter Publishers $22.5 (309p) ISBN 978-0-517-59347-9
Gooseberry fool, mulligatawny soup, floating island: the names alone are enough to evoke pleasant memories of meals enjoyed long ago. Adams (Cooking from Quilt Country) crisscrossed the U.S. to collect recipes like these from church socials, libraries, small restaurants and devoted cooks. Still, this is not a regional cookbook; instead, Adams has grouped the recipes by season. She prefaces each recipe with a thumbnail sketch of its origins. The recipes are clear and concise, and none, except maybe the preserves, are beyond the skills of novice cooks. For those who really like to cook from scratch, Adams includes a chapter on basics, like white sauce and dumplings; and a chapter on making preserves like mincemeat, jellies or chutneys. Her choice of recipes isn't just a nostalgic trip through grandma's kitchen: travel notes and postcards from around the country illustrate aspects of American history. Adams thoughtfully includes mail-order sources and the restaurants and bed-and-breakfasts she discovered during her research. A PBS series based on the book will be launched in November. Photos not seen by PW. (Nov.)
Reviewed on: 10/31/1994
Release date: 11/01/1994
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