Portland loves the Country Cat restaurant, and what a treat to be able to make their Midwestern comfort fare in the relaxation of our own kitchens. Chefs Adam and Jackie Sappington dub their recipes: “glorified Gramma cuisine.” This is American heritage food served with just the right touch of modern style. Recommended By Tracey T., Powells.com
Synopses & Reviews
Soulful, heartland-inspired food from Portland's popular The Country Cat
Heartlandia is based on husband-and-wife team Adam and Jackie Sappington's acclaimed Portland restaurant, The Country Cat Dinner House and Bar. Adam, Executive Chef and a self-taught expert in whole animal butchery, and Jackie, the Executive Pastry Chef, make food that is the definition of soulful, heartwarming comfort food. Some of the mouthwatering dishes include Autumn Squash Soup with Apple Cider and Brown Butter, Red Wine-Braised Beef with Wild Mushroom Steak Sauce, and Crispy Fried Oysters with Smoky Bacon and Green Apple Ragout. And don't forget about their legendary Skillet-Fried Chicken. The sweets are just as enticing, such as the Challah French Toast with Maker's Mark Custard and Clabber Cream, Butterscotch Pudding, and Bourbon Peach Crumble Pie. Additional chapters include one for drinks and another for pickles and preserves. The cookbook also has beautiful photographs that capture not only the amazing food but also the spirit of the restaurant and the heartland.
"Missouri heritage cooking meets the clean flavors of the Pacific Northwest in this improbably delicious mash-up. The Sappingtons, chef owners of the Country Cat in Portland, Ore., open their collection with a classic perfected buttermilk biscuits and then the homestyle hits keep coming: challah French toast with Maker's Mark custard and clabber cream, the restaurant's signature skillet-fried chicken, rhubarb cobbler with ruby caramel. Woven into each chapter are plenty of charming anecdotes from Adam Sappington's Midwest childhood, with respect for the culinary wisdom of past generations in his ode to 'glorified Gramma cuisine.' Hints of a more refined Portland palate make their way in too, with dishes such as the chanterelle, green bean, and freekeh salad with huckleberry vinaigrette, and crispy fried oysters with smoky bacon and green apple ragout. However, the recipes that shine the brightest are the ones written from the heart: a passionate homage to ranch dressing, a remembrance of the Friday night fish fry, and a potted cheese dip simply known as 'Judy.' With generosity and a warm sense of humor, the Sappingtons invite everyone to pull up a chair at their family table and with recipes like theirs, readers will be more than happy to dig in. Agent: Betsy Amster Literary Enterprises. (Sept.)" Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"Amid the culinary distractions of Portland — the uni ice cream, the grasshopper sushi — The Country Cat has been focused on the comforting, wholesome dishes of America's Heartland for nearly a decade. Heartlandia will have you cooking Sappington signatures such as suet-fried chicken, crispy turkey tails, and a morel and spring vegetable hash that transport you to the covered-dish suppers and Friday lake-fish frys of Adam's rural Missouri upbringing. It's a wonderful — and delicious — place to be!" Matt Lee and Ted Lee, authors of The Lee Bros. Charleston Kitchen
"Heartlandia is as inspiring as it is nostalgic...fresh, local ingredients and perfectly executed dishes. Adam and Jackie have opened up their hearts and souls to us with the Country Cat, and now with this book everyone's inner Gramma can become a very slick lady!" Aaron Franklin, owner of Franklin Barbecue and author of Franklin Barbecue: A Meat-Smoking Manifesto
"Grab this book and wrap it around you like a warm blanket!!!! Adam is the mouthwatering fried chicken and Jackie is the sweet butterscotch pudding in their meal of life! Adam's respect of the land and its product and his intuitive, comforting cooking is what makes him one of my favorite chefs. I have had the great fortune of cooking in the kitchen with Adam and eating his delicious food and listening to his infectious laugh. I am thrilled to have this book in my kitchen so that I can crack open a page and put a smile on my face — on the cloudiest of days. This book is 3-D deliciousness: I wanted to reach through the pages and grab a crispy end of lamb or a slice of birthday cake! Dive in and start cooking and get those pages dirty!" Amanda Freitag, chef and Food Network personality
"This book will teach you to bake the fluffiest biscuits and fry a chicken to perfection. You will learn the provenance of seasonal ingredients and may even become an expert at butchering whole hogs. But the real joy of Heartlandia is knowing that Adam and Jackie not only put their souls into cooking at The Country Cat, but now also their hearts into writing Heartlandia." Vitaly Paley, chef and owner of Paley's Place, Imperial, and Portland Penny Diner, and co-author of Paley's Place Cookbook
About the Author
Always comforted by food's ability to incite conversation and generate close-knit bonds, ADAM SAPPINGTON is the Executive Chef at The Country Cat, the premier made-from-scratch, farm-to-table restaurant located in Southeast Portland. Beginning in a cutting-edge trattoria in his hometown, Adam attended the Western Culinary Institute in Portland and soon landed at Wildwood Restaurant, where he worked his way up to Executive Chef over the course of 11 years.
A self-described "pie geek," JACKIE SAPPINGTON started experimenting with food at an early age, tackling her first recipe at just 10 years old. In 1995 she moved to Portland, where she worked her way through Wildwood and Paley's Place. She switched gears to pastry at Café Azul and Lauro Kitchen. With a sole focus on pastries for more than 10 years now, Jackie's approach is warm and patient, but meticulous and infused with love.