The B.T.C Old Fashioned Grocery Cookbook

Alexe Van Beuren and recipes by Dixie Grimes




recipe-complemented tribute documents the transformation of a small Mississippi town from a crumbling shadow of past times to a vital railroad hub and agricultural business center, describing the pivotal role of a simple grocery and prepared foods store in promoting empowered community life.



What started as place to catch up with friend and family while eating some good down home food, it has become so much more. The B.T.C Old Fashioned Grocery has become the heart and soul of the little town of Water Valley Mississippi. The B.T.C. Old Fashioned Grocery has as motto “Be The Change” and it has done just that. This grocery and diner has brought the community together and is just a quint little mom and pop type store that use to be the heart of towns and cities.

The B.T.C Old Fashioned Grocery Cookbook is full of down home, comfort food. From Banana Bread that is super moist and very yummy, to skillet biscuits and sausage gravy. It also has the recipe for chocolate gravy that my husband grew up with and was very happy to know I now have the recipe. I tried it and I love chocolate but this is not a fave of mine. It also has  a recipe for tomato gravy which sounds yummy and a great way to start the morning off with some veggies.This winter I know the recipe for Vegetable Beef Soup with Butter Beans will be a staple in this house! Along with their Down Home Tomato Soup. I l really enjoy soups and make a big pot of it and eat on it through out the week. Add some yummy bread from the bakery and I am set! I added B.T.C’s Broccoli Salad and English Pea Salad to my end of summer menu, let me tell you they are just as good the next day!

The number 1 recipe I LOVE and make weekly is Coulter’s Red Beans and Rice! Oh my how I love a big old pot of Red Beans and Rice, I was so happy when I found good old chicken andouille sausage in my local grocery store. We have it but it’s usually so expensive but they now carry authentic andouille from the good ole south that is maybe a tiny bit healthier. Coulter’s Red Beans and Rice is just like you would get in Louisiana!  Plus they include the recipe for perfect white rice. I  know what your thinking brown rice is healthier and better for you, but for me white rice is Red Beans and Rice! 🙂

All and all I’ve used this cookbook many times and know it’s one that eventually I will have the recipes memorized from constant use. What sets this cookbook a part from other cookbooks is all the wonderful stories and tales! It makes you feel like you’re at The B.T.C Old Fashioned Grocery.


The Homemade Kitchen

by Alana Chernila
The Homemade Kitchen is a good cookbook and made perfect for the seasoned at home cook or the brand new to cooking person looking for info. Really this cookbook would be the perfect gift for a person that is new to cooking. The author has divided the book into chapters that as simple as Be A Beginner which is all so full of so much information it is one of my favorite chapters. I know how to cook eggs, veggies and such but she breaks it down into all kinds from how to steam and roast veggies to transforming milk or cooking grains. This is good for all levels of cooking and I learned a few things and have several post-its in this chapter. The other chapters are about making meals and I love a lot of post it flags sticking out of this book. 🙂   My favorite book of hers will always be The Homemade Pantry but this one is good and I’m glad to have it in my kitchen cookbook library.
summary:  Written as much for the reader as the cook, The Homemade Kitchen covers a globe’s worth of flavors and includes new staples (what Alana is known for) such as chèvre, tofu, kefir, kimchi, preserved lemons, along with recipes and ideas for using them. Here, too, are dishes you’ll be inspired to try and that you will make again and again until they become your own family recipes, such as Broccoli Raab with Cheddar Polenta, a flavor-forward lunch for one; Roasted Red Pepper Corn Chowder, “late summer in a bowl”; Stuffed Winter Squash, rich with leeks, chorizo, apples, and grains; Braised Lamb Shanks that are tucked into the oven in the late afternoon and not touched again until dinner; Corn and Nectarine Salad showered with torn basil; perfect share-fare Sesame Noodles; Asparagus Carbonara, the easiest weeknight dinner ever; and sweet and savory treats such as Popovers, Cinnamon Swirl Bread, Summer Trifle made with homemade pound cake and whatever berries are ripest, and Rhubarb Snacking Cake.
In this follow-up to Alana’s wildly successful debut, The Homemade Pantry, she once again proves herself to be the truest and least judgmental friend a home cook could want.


by Chrissy Teigen

I love cookbooks, and I really like Chrissy Teigen’s blog so I jumped at the chance to have this little book on my shelf and in my kitchen. I’m always on the lookout for recipes that we will eat, not just ones that look great but cost an arm and a leg to buy all the ingredients. Not to mention having to go to umpteen millions stores to find that 1 ingredient that is impossible to find. Cravings is not about fancy foods with hard to find ingredients, that cost lots of money. Cravings is about good down home flavorful foods that families will like. I have so many post it’s coming out of this book it looks like a rainbow is stuck with in the pages. I have made many of the foods and even did a week of Cravings meal. Guess what my grocery bill was not really any different price range wise. It was a  few dollars more but nothing that would make me say wow these recipes are too expensive for me. 

Chrissy is a tell it like it is gal and her charm and wit come across in the recipe descriptions. I laughed so hard while reading through this book, and that is a first with a cookbook. I just love Chrissy and John and so happy for all the happiness they have going on right now, first her book baby and her baby girl. Gift Cravings to any one wanting to learn some yummy simple recipes,or someone who loves to cook. This book makes a great gift for a bridal shower or birthday. Cravings would also make a wonderful new mom gift – make a meal from the book and gift the meal and book and you’ve just giving a wonderful gift to new parents.
Some of my favorite meals we’ve eaten so far from the book:
  • Spicy Tomato Skillet Eggs
  • Pull Apart Buttermilk Biscuits with sausage gravy
  • Pot Pie Soup with crust crackers (genius idea and so yummy)
  • Vegetable Tortilla Stew (so yummy! Even my have to have meat with every meal guy liked this one)
  • Cobb Salad with Honey Mustard Ranch Dressing
  • Chicken Lettuce Wraps
  • Spicy Italian Sausage Meatloaf
  • Spicy Cajun Sausage Peppers and Cabbage
  • John’s Tuscan Brick Chicken with Charred Lemons
  • and so many more….

    thank you Clarkson Potter, Chrissy Teigen and Bloggins for Books for sending me a copy. All thoughts and opinions are my own and were not influenced by the free book.

Snack Girl to the Rescue

A Real-Life Guide to Losing Weight and Getting Healthy with 100 Recipes Under 400 Calories by Lisa Cain


I liked Snack Girl to the Rescue. She gives a lot of good advise and all but I wish she went more into depth on some key issues. The recipes look and sound great and all but I really wish there were a few pictures even if it was just a small handful.

This book would be good for a beginning dieter or even just some one looking for easy recipes to start the healthier eating road. Her blog is a great source of yummy recipes and eating advise. She is here to help you get on the healthy track.

All in all I know this is a cookbook I will use and I’m sure the recipe pages will get full of stains as I try out many recipes and we make our favorites over and over.

Some recipes we can’t wait to make: Simplest Comforting Pasta, Mashed Potatoes with Cauliflower, all the roasted veggies!, Bake and Take Granola and so many of the snacks.

{disclaimer: I’m not on a diet but I do try to eat healthy and make healthy meals for my family. So it’s always great to find a cookbook full of easy, inexpensive, healthy meals to make.}

I received this book free from the publisher Random House as part of the Blogging for Books reviewer program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

Kitchen Confidence

by Kelsey Nixon

I remember watching Kelsey on Next Food Network Star, I loved her personality and her easy, yummy recipes. I was routing for her to win but she did not. 😦 So I was very happy to see that Bobby Flay’s production company was going to give her a show on The Cooking Channel! 🙂 I watch The Cooking Channel a lot more than Food Network and I love her show Kelsey’s Essentials.

Kitchen Confidence is not just a book for those new to cooking, even seasoned experienced cooks can enjoy this wonderful cookbook! Kitchen Confidence along with some pans or baking items would be a great bridal shower or wedding gift, it would also be a great gift for anyone who loves to cook and is looking for yummy, easy to fix recipes.

Kitchen Confidence has 100 recipes and 60 photographs. Each recipe has a little story or info about how it came about, why she loves it, etc. The beginning she includes some essentials she feels should be in every kitchen from pantry items including freezer staples like: chicken thighs (her personal fave) and frozen fruits. Next she includes some of her kitchen essentials, and some fun items to add if you have the room and money. She even includes some cooking techniques that she feels are essential for every confident cook along with page numbers to learn about them.

I have so many marked pages with recipes to try. She starts out with breakfast recipes and there are many I can’t wait to try, like her sausage skillet hash recipe {would be great for a breakfast for dinner night}. I’m going to try her green smoothie recipe I love her little twist on it and her biscuits look great and would be great to much on through out the week, whether it’s with jam for breakfast or a mid day snack, or some savory garlic butter for dinner.

Her meatball recipe is simple and very yummy {I tasted one after they were done!}, it also makes up enough for meatball subs and leftovers to add to your spaghetti another night. So 2 meals in 1 recipe is a great way to stretch her dollar and cut down on food prep time. Her Essential Stove top Macaroni and Cheese is very yummy and passed the test with my Mac n Cheese loving kid with flying colors! Her Roasted Tomato Soup with Pesto and Cheesy Garlic Croutons is a fun take on the classic and very popular Tomato Soup with Grilled Cheese Sandwich. Ingredients for this are on my grocery list for next week.

I’m so happy to have this cookbook and know that this is going to be one of my go to cookbooks. I already created a whole meal plan around recipes to try. Tonight we are having meatball subs and more of her yummy Mac n Cheese!

thank you blogging for books for sending me a copy of Kitchen Confidence for review. I LOVE it and can’t wait to work my way through the whole book!