Stepping inside someone else's kitchen and getting to see the kind of food they cook ranks right up there among "my most favorite things." This is exactly the kind of feeling I get from paging through Sunny Anderson's book. I'm not familiar with her Food Network show, but I feel like everything she's about — from telling stories while food cooks slowly and making anyone feel welcome at her table to serving good southern fare with the occasional surprise from her travels abroad — is front and center on the pages of this cookbook.
• Who wrote it: Sunny Anderson
• Who published it: Clarkson Potter
• The angle: Don't worry about the details; just cook the food you love.
• Recipes for right now: San Antonio Migas, Chicken and Chorizo Hash, Maple Bacon and Chicken Quesadillas, Brooklyn Beef Patties, Spinach and Artichoke-Stuffed Baguette Slices, Beefy Butternut Squash Chili, Shrimp and Garlic Fusilli, Fried Sweet Tea Chicken, Lemon-Thyme Spaetzle, Creamy Collard Pesto
• Other highlights:
The recipes here are mostly of the Southern Tex-Mex variety — lots of cheese and steak and smoky chili seasoning — but there are some surprises. Korean fried dumplings? Spaetzle? Spicy noodle bowl?! Although her family roots are in the Carolinas, Sunny's travels have taken her all over the world, first as an army kid and later during her own military career. I love how she shares not only her family's culinary history but also her own, very personal culinary history in this cookbook.
There's such a sense of enthusiasm throughout this book. Some of that is the Food Network's signature mega-watt smile that's always amped up to 11, but some of it is definitely Sunny's own charismatic personality. In both the photos of Sunny in her kitchen and in the stories she tells with each recipe, I feel genuine warmth and an honest desire to share the recipes she loves.
• Who would enjoy this book? Fans of Sunny, bored cooked questing for new ways to spark up their weeknight meal routine, anyone who loves a good party
Find the book at your local library, independent bookstore, or Amazon: Sunny's Kitchen by Sunny Anderson
• Visit the author's website: Sunny Anderson
Apartment Therapy Media makes every effort to test and review products fairly and transparently. The views expressed in this review are the personal views of the reviewer and this particular product review was not sponsored or paid for in any way by the manufacturer or an agent working on their behalf. However, the manufacturer did give us the product for testing and review purposes.
(Image credits: Emma Christensen)