NEW YORK – Trish Yearwood is a collard type girl, but her husband, Garth Brooks, is definitely not a collard type guy. So she must have been a little sly when it came time to perfect her Wontons stuffed with Collard.
When the country star and her collaborator and sister Beth first made them at her Nashville home, they didn’t tell Brooks and her boyfriend what was on them when the two walked into the room. cooking after working on their farm.
“I said, ‘You are trying this. I didn’t tell them what it was. And they ate them all. They were like, “This is amazing stuff! ”, Recalls Yearwood. “And then I told him he had eaten his collard greens for the day.”
Quirky Southern Meets Asia wontons are a feature of Yearwood’s fourth cookbook, “Trisha’s Kitchen: Easy Comfort Food for Friends and Family,” which features 125 recipes that combine her knowledge of soulful Southern cooking. to influences from China, Italy and Mexico.
Yearwood says the past five years she’s hosted her Emmy-winning Food Network series “Trisha’s Southern Kitchen” has helped her strengthen her cooking skills and grow her recipe development.
“I got into a really cool phase and I really attribute the show to just giving myself confidence to try new things. And now they’ve become family favorites and they feel like things that have always been in the family, ”she says.
Yearwood is open to ideas, even asking restaurants how chefs prepare their favorite dishes. She moved away from a sushi restaurant in Tulsa, Oklahoma, with the origins of Garth’s Teriyaki Bowl, which uses marinated chicken and steak.
This same restaurant inspired their steak and avocado rolls, which use soy wrappers to mimic sushi rolls. Neither Yearwood nor Brooks are fans of raw fish – “we’re kind of people who roll in flour and fry it,” she admits – but their daughters are, so the recipe is a compromise.
Yearwood also relied on several family recipes for the dishes in the new book, including some from his father’s mother. Her grandmother was a dessert specialist, but none of her recipes seemed to have survived until the family recently found a little book with handwritten recipes, including one for the hundred dollar cupcakes. Trisha and Beth also recreated an never-before-written dish, Jack’s Fried Pies, named after her father. (see recipe below).
Jerky turns out to have a special place in her kitchen, yet she’s learned that she doesn’t need fancy equipment or a dehumidifier to make her barbecue or her teriyaki jerky. She just lights her oven.
“It really is a soft, slow oven, like at 200 degrees for hours. It is not expensive to do. You can get a really cheap cut of meat and slice it yourself, or you can have your butcher slice it into strips for you, then marinate and cook it slowly. Then it can be as soft or as hard as you want, ”she says.
Other nifty recipes include one for the Camo cake she made for her nephew’s birthday that uses food coloring to mimic the look of camouflage, and Chicken Potpie Burger, which combines a classic chicken pie with a little bread.
“Everything in the book is who she really is and how she really cooks. And that’s a reflection of her life and her personality, ”said Deb Brody, vice president and publisher of adult commerce at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. “It’s not just a celebrity putting their name on a cookbook. In fact, she cooks that way.
While Yearwood has plenty of vegetarian options, bacon plays a key role in “Trisha’s Kitchen,” including a breakthrough in snack technology called Bacon Straws: twisted strips of bacon brushed with maple syrup and chili flakes. red and sprinkled with cheddar cheese.
“When I’m cooking, if there’s bacon on a burger or something, anyone in my house comes by and takes a piece of bacon. We all just want bacon, like, it doesn’t have to be on anything, ”she says. “So it was this idea to make it your own thing, to make it an aperitif and it’s crispy and crisp. You just walk past and take one – or 10. ”
The pandemic sped up the creation of the book, with Yearwood’s scheduled tour halted and the lockdown forcing her into her kitchen. Comfort food was a natural way for her to cook on her way out of her forties.
“I often sat on the couch, drank coffee, and walked down the depression den. But then – I think it was approaching a few months – I thought, “This would be a great time to write a new book,” she said.
“It was kind of knocking on the door, almost like when you need to do a new album. In a way, it was really therapeutic and cathartic for me to be able to focus on something like that, because that food really brings us together.
“My father, Jack, remembered the little fried apple donuts his mother, Elizabeth, made for him when he was a child. Of course, like many family recipes passed down, this one wasn’t written down anywhere, so mom got to work, trying to figure out how to make them like her mom did. It is never an easy task, as our childhood memories often make these original flavors impossible to replicate. Beth and I remember those pre-made pockets of dough sitting on the kitchen counter and mom frying them in a cast iron skillet. We also remember how happy Dad was with the result. We are not surprised that she is right! Grandma Yearwood always fried with lard, but if that scares you, the vegetable oil is perfectly fine! – Trisha Yearwood
Jack’s Fried Pies
Makes 10 pies
- 1 tbsp unsalted butter
- 2 Granny Smith apples, peeled, seeded and cut into ½ inch dice
- ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
- Pinch of ground ginger
- ½ cup packed light brown sugar
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon of cornstarch
- 2 pounds of lard or
- 1½ liter of vegetable oil, for frying
- 1 box (2 crusts) refrigerated pie crusts (I like Pillsbury)
- Special equipment:
- 4½ inch round cookie cutter
1. In a small sauté pan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the apples, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, brown sugar, salt and 1/4 cup water, stir and cover to bring to a boil, 5 to 7 minutes, then cook, uncovered, until until until apples are slightly softened, about 4 minutes.
2. In a small bowl, combine cornstarch and 1 tablespoon of water until combined and pourable. Pour the cornstarch porridge into the apple filling and simmer over low heat for 2 more minutes, or until the liquid has thickened.
3. Pour the apple mixture into a shallow bowl (a pie plate works great) and cool in the refrigerator, stirring occasionally, for 25 minutes.
4. Put the lard or vegetable oil in a deep Dutch oven. Attach a frying thermometer to the side and heat the lard over high heat to 360 ° F.
5. Roll out the two rounds of pie dough and use a 4 1/2 inch round cookie cutter to cut four circles from each. Gather the remains, unroll again and cut out 2 more circles.
6. Fill each round of dough with a large tablespoon of apple filling, then, using a little water on your fingers, wet the edge of the dough and press together into a half moon. Crimp the edges with the tines of a fork to seal.
7. When all the pies are assembled and the oil is at temperature, fry 3 or 4 pies at a time for 4 to 5 minutes. Transfer the pies to a paper towel-lined platter to drain and cool slightly, then repeat to fry the remaining pies, allowing the oil to return to 360 ° F between batches. Enjoy warm.
Trisha’s tip: Apple filling can be made the night before and stored in the refrigerator until ready to use.
Extract of “Trisha’s Kitchen: Easy Comfort Food for Friends and Family” , copyright 2021. Reproduced with permission from Mariner Books, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers.