THE PIONEER WOMAN COOKS
RECIPES FROM AN
ACCIDENTAL COUNTRY GIRL
BY REE DRUMMOND
My name is Ree.
Some folks know me as The Pioneer Woman.
After years of living in Los Angeles, I made a pit stop in my hometown in Oklahoma on the way to a new, exciting life in Chicago. It was during my stay at home that I met Marlboro Man, a mysterious cowboy with steely blue eyes and a muscular, work-honed body. A strict vegetarian, I fell hard and fast, and before I knew it we were married and living on his ranch in the middle of nowhere, taking care of animals, and managing a brood of four young children. I had no idea how I'd wound up there, but I knew it was exactly where I belonged.
The Pioneer Woman Cooks is a homespun collection of photography, rural stories, and scrumptious recipes that have defined my experience in the country. I share many of the delicious cowboy-tested recipes I've learned to make during my years as an accidental ranch wife—including Rib-Eye Steak with Whiskey Cream Sauce, Lasagna, Fried Chicken, Patsy's Blackberry Cobbler, and Cinnamon Rolls—not to mention several "cowgirl-friendly" dishes, such as Sherried Tomato Soup, Olive Cheese Bread, and Crème Brûlée. I show my recipes in full color, step-by-step detail, so it's as easy as pie to follow along.
You'll also find colorful images of rural life: cows, horses, country kids, and plenty of chaps-wearing cowboys.
I hope you get a kick out of this book of mine. I hope it makes you smile. I hope the recipes bring you recognition, accolades, and marriage proposals. And I hope it encourages even the most harried urban cook to slow down, relish the joys of family, nature, and great food, and enjoy life.
Howdy. I’m Ree Drummond, The Pioneer Woman. Welcome to my frontier! I’m a thirty-something ranch wife, mother of four, moderately agoraphobic middle child who grew up on a golf course in the city. I attended college in Los Angeles and wore black pumps to work every day. I ate sushi and treated myself to pedicures on a semi-regular basis. I even kissed James Garner in an elevator once. Then, on a brief trip to my hometown, I met and fell in love with a rugged cattle rancher. Now I live in the middle of nowhere on a working cattle ranch. My days are spent wrangling children, chipping dried manure from boots, washing jeans, and frying calf nuts. I have no idea how I got here…but you know what? I love it. Don’t tell anyone.
What a delight THE PIONEER WOMAN COOKS is! As more and more books seem to come along with recipes in them, many of which are memoirs as well, it is fun to see the different ways they are presented. Ree Drummond is someone that many of you may know from her blog if nothing else. I, however, never saw her blog and so this book was truly a new experience. I so enjoyed reading about how Ree came to be where she is today from L. A. to on a ranch with the man she loves (the Marlboro Man to those of you in the know) and a wonderful family...and she is delightfully happy. Her happiness is contagious as she shares with the reader her life as it was and is now, and still the main thing, of course, is about THE FOOD! Including photos of her life and family throughout the book just helps to make it seem friendlier and as if it is a good friend or family member sharing some stories and recipes with you.
Her recipes are explained in detail with pictures that take you step-by-step through each of them. For the experienced cook, this may be tedious to you, but for someone who has not cooked much, or someone like me who was so stuck in a rut of frozen food and opening cans, this was the inspiration to get me back to cooking for myself and my husband. So often I see a recipe or picture and want to make it but know it won't come out like it is supposed to as I tend to alter the recipe or not know how to do it right. With THE PIONEER WOMAN COOKS there is not anything left to wonder about. Each recipe is spelled out carefully and photographed and drawn out so that even I can make the food as it should be made...and that is YUMMY! Good home spun, southern country, family cooking, that my husband loves and remembers from his mom...what a happy man! I also have to say some of the recipes I do take liberties with only to spare some of the calories but for the most part, I make them as is. I especially love the oatmeal cookies, creamy mashed potatoes, lasagna, and cinnamon rolls---not the calorie saving attempts for sure!
I love the way the book is organized into categories: Starters, In the Morning, Dinner (meaning Lunch for us), Supper (meaning Dinner) and Sweets (meaning "most important part for ME!"). Ree also includes a section for Sunday Dinner and Cowboy Dinner Party for special occasions. The photographs are delicious and delightful in the book, and the recipes are about three pages long as they include all the steps with pictures.
The book is funny and filled with interesting little asides about Ree's life on the ranch as well as all about the food. She makes you feel like you know her, or for sure you want her to be your friend. Best of all, she makes the recipes easy enough for all of us to be successful with. The down home southern cooking gives you the comfort one expects from this kind of food but also often has a little surprising twist to it and so the end result is a surprise and extra bit of heaven to taste! This book is good to cook with, read, share, and just look at if for no other reason than the lovely photography. Enjoy this one for sure...I know I did!
THANKS TO SHAWN AND MY GOOD
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