Yes. You've read the title correctly. This cookbook, "The Broad Fork" by Hugh Acheson is a guide to the farmer's market. Why do I say that? I say it with such authority because it is. This cookbook not only gives you recipes, it tells you what seasonal vegetables are worth your time at the farmer's market. Well, not literally, but Hugh highlighted each ingredient (vegetable) with a variety of preparations. Now, that is what I call a good guide book.
Let Hugh guide us through what's in season at the moment (from Athens, GA's vantage point), from Fall through Summer.
With each vegetable (in some cases fruit), he provides us with a nice little personal description, and then 3-4 recipes, 2-3 quick straightforward ones (sides or entrees), and one a little more fancy (in depth full entree). We will see traditional ones such as apples and celery in the Fall; collard greens, kale and winter squash in the Winter; asparagus, carrots, radishes in the Spring; and corn, cucumbers and peaches in the Summer. Then there's stuff like kohlrabi in the Fall, salsify (what?!?!? it is an edible root, similar to a carrot) in the Winter, and okra in the Summer. There's much more, but I wanted to show you the diversity Hugh has given us with 336 beautiful pages.
A little about Hugh Acheson. He is an award winning chef from Athens, GA with several restaurants as chef and partner in the South. Many will recognize him as a guest judge on Bravo's Top Chef. For me, since I don't watch Top Chef, I probably wouldn't recognize him on the street. However, I've learned a little more about him since I was given a signed copy of his first cookbook, A New Turn in the South. With southern influences, and awesome flavors, A New Turn in the South easily became a bestseller in the cookbook genre. I also had the pleasure of eating at one of his establishments, The National, and it was delicious to say the least, which also became one of the highlights of that trip. So if you're a fan of his first cookbook and his restaurants, you'll also like this one.
I find "The Broad Fork" speaks to me, as a topic since I love vegetables and having a vegetable-centric cookbook that gives you ideas on what to do with some of the same old lettuce, just sounds and proves rewarding. How so? By being rewarded with compliments and a smile my way from my family. And THAT just makes my day.
NOTE: I received a complimentary copy of this cookbook from the publisher, Penguin Random House through Blogging for Books for an honest review.