Picks and Pans Review: The Prudhomme Family Cookbook
by the Prudhomme Brothers and Sisters
Paul Prudhomme, Louisiana's larger-than-life Cajun chef, is the family star, but Mama Prudhomme showed all her children how to make simple food sizzle. Now, the 12 Prudhomme siblings have successfully recreated recipes their mama once made for them. Cajun food, they say, "came from people who didn't have anything else." The Prudhommes grew everything they ate, basing their cooking on Cayenne pepper, file powder and roux. And although this cuisine is not exactly Weight Watchers material, these recipes use much less butter than Paul's solo book does. Each of the siblings is credited with a specialty; sometimes the dishes overlap. There may be only one way to skin a 'gator, but you can thicken an étouffée (a cross between soup and stew), with a roux à la Paul or with cornstarch in the version provided by J.C. and Sis. The chapters on desserts, sweets and beverages nicely top off a festive book. (Morrow, $19.95)
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