Chef, raconteur, and old-school bon vivant Johnathon Barrett celebrates the most glorious aspects of Southern life in his new book, Cook and Tell. Alongside poignant, hilarious tales of his own family table are guest authors with pet recipes, both heirloom and newbie; city and farm-fresh. The effect is like sitting on the porch of an old hotel and getting into a cornbread discussion that widens to a smoked mullet, pork belly, best-iced-tea debate, won not only on the merit of the recipe but the quality of the story-telling.
--Janis Owens, author of American Ghost and The Cracker Kitchen
I’ll bet you a hot ham biscuit with redeye gravy that Johnathon Barrett’s fabulous collection of tales and tables will soon be joining your shelf of well-worn favorites!
--Cassandra King, author of The Sunday Wife
Johnathon Barrett writes books for cooks. They are not the people who went to culinary school or command a kitchen. They are the people who love to cook for their friends and family and understand the emotional connection we all have with food. Barrett understands how food can be memory and warmth and love. This book is filled with great recipes, but it’s also full of life and humor and kindness, just like Grandma’s kitchen.
--Celeste Headlee, Georgia Public Broadcasting’s “On Second Thought” Host/Executive Producer
Get a fabulous taste of food-driven life down South from a man who can cook and write. Here’s a “mess” of a good read that’s as sweet as a fried peach pie.
--Tom Poland, A Southern Writer, author of Georgialina, A Southland As We Knew It,
and Solid Ground, a play for Georgia’s Swamp Gravy Folk Theater.
A summertime shelling of blackeyed peas in a porch swing. Getting to the top of a 10-foot ladder to reach Brown Turkey Figs to make preserves. Mulling down a pot of just-caught catfish with potatoes, tomatoes, and onions for two hours. Frying pies stuffed with Georgia peaches in a black-iron skillet. These are some of the scenes from Cook & Tell, Johnathon Scott Barrett’s endearing collection of food-centered stories and recipes from around the South. With a bowl of curried cocktail pecans on your kitchen counter, you’ll be frying corn in bacon grease and topping banana pudding with meringue just like the best cooks in the South, no matter where you grew up.
-- Fred Sauceman, Editor of the book series Food and the American South
What's the higher compliment, being called a Great Southern Writer or a Great Southern Cook? Johnathan Scott Barrett is both, which is upsetting to those of us who are only one of those things. Cook & Tell is a high-calorie romp through the kitchen of memory. I ate it up. You will, too.
--Harrison Scott Key, author of The World's Largest Man and
recipient of the 2016 Thurber Prize for American Humor
A certified Southern gentleman and an engaging storyteller, Johnathon Barrett has woven together a wonderful collection of not only recipes but the stories behind them. Cook and Tell is more than a cookbook: it is a collection of heart-warming and funny essays. Just like the wonderful food featured in this anthology, the stories are to be savored from one chapter to the next.
--Michael Morris, award-winning author of Slow Way Home,
Man in the Blue Moon, and Wiregrass
Join Johnathon on this virtual front porch, as his friends drop by to share their stories and recipes with you. You'll laugh, you'll cry, and you'll feel cathartically nostalgic. Make a tall pitcher of iced tea, indulge your palate with the recipes in this book, and feed your soul with these stories from the heart.
--Sandra A. Gutierrez—award-winning author of Empanadas: The Hand-Held Pies of Latin America and of
The New Southern-Latino Table
Cook & Tell brings together those two things that are irresistible to Southerners: home cooking and storytelling. Johnathon Scott Barrett’s work is a cookbook you can read, and a collection of stories you can cook from.
--Nicki Pendleton Wood, author, Southern Cooking for Company,
All-New Square Foot Gardening Cookbook, Seductive Tables for Two
Johnathon Barrett captures the subtle essence of outstanding Southern cultural cooking. Readers will enjoy these recipes along with his sensitive narratives on life in the South – he is a charming storyteller who combines the distinctive Southern cadence of memories and stories of home and loved ones swapped across the dinner table with delicious Southern recipes. You get generous servings of each and both are delicious.
--Pat Branning, editor-in-chief of Shrimp, Collards & Grits: Lifestyle of the Coastal South
Cook & Tell is exactly as it sounds, a sharing of family and food history from Johnathon Scott Barrett, an exceptional author, and son of the South, whose love of his land shows through every word he writes. If you want to know Southern foodways from real family stories, this is the book to read.
--Linda Rogers Weiss, author of Memories from Home and Seasoned in the Kitchen,
former food editor at South Carolina Home & Garden
Jonathan Barrett’s Cook and Tell is utterly delicious. The family stories and recipes shared are spiced with humor and sweetened by memories. Reading it, I felt like I was sitting on his front porch.”
--Mary Alice Monroe, NY Times bestselling author of Beach House for Rent