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Ham Biscuits, Hostess Gowns, and Other Southern Specialties: An Entertaining Life (with Recipes)

3.79 of 5 stars 3.79  ·  rating details  ·  163 ratings  ·  22 reviews
Julia Reed spends a lot of time thinking about ham biscuits. And cornbread and casseroles and the surprisingly modern ease of donning a hostess gown for one’s own party. In Ham Biscuits, Hostess Gowns and Other Southern Specialties Julia Reed collects her thoughts on good cooking and the lessons of gracious entertaining that pass from one woman to another, and takes the re ...more
Paperback, 272 pages
Published April 28th 2009 by St. Martin's Griffin (first published July 8th 2008)
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Julia Reed makes me laugh and inspires me to get in the kitchen and rustle up something delicious using one of her recipes. I always love her books because her essays make me feel like I am visiting with a girlfriend.
A delightful collection of essays and recipes for cooks fascinated by the traditions of Southern ladies. Loved it and look forward to trying out recipes for so many familiar treats.
OK - what is the idea of a cookbook with no index of recipes in the back? Very bad oversight on everyone's part.

And the fact that Reed knows everyone can get a little grating, but still a great summer read: breezy party stories and food for every occasion. I've already made the potato salad twice. Frankly how could I not be hooked on a book with a chapter titled "Friendly Persuasion" that was about Lee Bailey AND Mary Cantwell (Nan are you reading this??)

I bought Bailey's "Country Weekends" wi
False Millennium
I love the author's writing style. Her books are always a combination of memoir and recipes. I'm planning on saving all of the recipes to try whenever I entertain.
I judge whether a book is really good or not by whether I hate for the book to end. I hated that this one ended. This is the most fun read I have had about food in a long time -- perhaps because I'm from the South and identify with Julia Reed. These essays on food, accompanied by recipes, are delightful, and though I haven't tried the recipes yet, but they all seem so simple, I'm eager to try them. By the end of the book, Reed, who is a journalist in New York, seems like a friend.
I read this at the same time I read Naturally Thin, and I learned that I am way more southern cook than skinny girl. It was a funny book, well written, and loaded with old Southern entertaining recipes. I remembered how much I liked pimento cheese after reading it and made a pound of it. Every recipe looks good and although none are anything less than southern fattening, they are mouth watering. I recommend reading it along side the skinny girl one to keep your balance.
Kate SouthernBelleSimple
I enjoyed this quick, light-hearted read. Towards the end, I found myself skipping her narrative to get straight to the recipes, but it was still a fun book. Some of the recipes are things I would never make (caviar, souffles, etc.) but others were really regular things that sounded good. I am definitely copying down a few of those!
Marianne Hetzer
I love reading books about food -- cookbooks, mysteries, memoirs -- whatever! And I feel an affinity for "Southern" food and traditions which I grew up with even though my grandmother was from a long line of PA/OH/WV stock. Go figure.
Maureen Flatley
Love Julia Reed.....reading her is like visiting a girl friend. This is a sweet little book about Southern cooking filled with funny narrative and great recipes.
Jane Riley
Mar 13, 2009 Jane Riley marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Suzanne loaned me this book. It is full of fabulous recipes and looks great. I'm trying to diet so putting it down for now! Making me hungry!
Thoughts on good cooking and gracious entertaining from Reed, a contributing editor at Vogue and Newsweek. A pleasure to read--with recipes to boot.
Alice Dilbeck
Wonderful mix of essays and recipes. hat could be better? Reed is a great essayist, and I so want to attend one of her parties one day.
A collection of NY Times columns with recipes, several of which I have added to my repertoire (including Lemonade Souffle).
No index. That sucks! The essays kept me laughing,and I made the mayonnaise today. Can't wait to try the other recipes.
Are you Southern? Do you cook? Add this book to your collection, and pass the ham biscuits, please.
Amy Koch
good recipes and nice stories to go with them. Ms. Reed has led an interesting life as well.
very entertaining book
i've been reading and savoring for months
thank you stacie
A collection of essays on southern food and quirks with several recipes per chapter.
Vicky Moon
Nov 09, 2013 Vicky Moon rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: every southern girl friend I know
Now this is more like it, what a fun time and with recipes too boot.
Lots of good recipes if you're a pork eater...
Mar 16, 2011 Sarah rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: food
I can't wait to try some of these recipes.
Sandra marked it as to-read
Jan 21, 2015
Trish marked it as to-read
Jan 06, 2015
Katie Brandner
Katie Brandner marked it as to-read
Jan 02, 2015
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