I recently had the opportunity to sit down with Southern Living contributing editor, culinary expert and cookbook author Rebecca Lang to discuss her new cookbook “Around the Southern Table”.
She invited me to her book signing she hosted at Atlanta’s Cooks Warehouse a few weeks ago. I had a chance to review her cookbook and sample a few amazing dishes from the book. Her pecan tassies are amazing! When I get a break from my hectic life right now, I have several must try recipes from her book on my cooking to-do list.
As a girl born and raised in the south and true foodie, it was an extreme honor to interview Rebecca.
Take a look at our interview below.
1. What is one the tool that you couldn’t live without in your kitchen?
My dishwasher. It’s not so much a tool as it is a lifesaving appliance. When the dishwasher has gone down in the past, it’s been devastating. When we put our house on the market in Atlanta, we wrote my dishwasher out as one of the few things that was not included with the sale. I was determined to take it with me.
2. What is your biggest tip for those trying to balance work, life, and family?
You can’t do all things well. There are three facets to where the majority of my time and energy could go to: Family, work, and my social life. I can only do two of those well. My first priority is my children and husband, and my work comes second. Thank goodness I’m blessed with friends that understand they may not see me for weeks at a time as my social life trickles behind.
3. Your new cookbook “Around the Southern Table” just came out, can you tell me a little about it.
It’s a truly beautiful book that can go from the kitchen to the coffee table. It’s filled with 167 recipes and it sure to bring any Southerner closer to their roots.
4. What are your favorite recipes in the book?
That’s a bit like asking what your favorite child is. I spent so much time and effort on each one, it’s really difficult to narrow it down. My family all has favorites. My son adores the Peppermint Wedding Cookies, my daughter goes for the Beignets with Buttermilk, and my husband loves the Roasted Cornish Hens with Lemons and Creamy Grits.
5. What inspired you to go to culinary school? What advice would you give someone who is thinking about going to culinary school?
Nathalie Dupree told me that I needed to go to culinary school to get a real understanding of cooking. It was totally true. Now, there are so many different avenues to learn how to cook, I’d advise something considering school to make sure it’s the best route to where they want to go. School is a huge financial commitment.
6. What are your fondest food memories from your childhood?
They all involve food. Sitting on the back porch while the grownups shelled peas, playing outside in the yard while the ice cream machine churned away, sucking on sugar cane just cut a few hours after it was cut.
7. How do you manage to stay so fit when you are always in the kitchen?
It’s rare I have time to even sit down. With two young children, I’m constantly moving. I also exercise and try to remember to always eat in moderation.
8. What’s been the greatest joy of writing this cookbook? Biggest challenge?
The greatest joy was reconnecting with my past and bringing memories of old family recipes to life. The toughest challenge was finding the time to test recipes,grocery shop, write, edit and still be a good full-time mother. I practically have a degree in time management.
9. What is your go-to comfort food? What do you reach for when you have late night cravings?
I love a good cheeseburger and macaroni and cheese. I don’t have late night cravings. After supper, I never have the urge to eat until breakfast.
10. If you could cook with one of person in the world who would it be and why?
I would cook with my grandmother one more time. I miss her in the kitchen everyday.
11. What advice would you give to someone who is thinking about writing a cookbook?
Don’t give up. If you have a worthy concept and can truly write a recipe, you should go after it.