Synopses & Reviews
Martha's Vineyard has long been renowned as a popular vacation destination, but few are aware of the island's rich culinary history. "Martha's Vineyard Table" celebrates the cuisine of this seaside escape with such treats as Codfish Fritters, Stuffed Quahogs, Corn Pudding, and Cranberry-Apple Crisp. In addition to 80 recipes, Jessica Harris captures the charm of the island's gingerbread cottages, lobster fishermen, artisan fudge shops, and farmers' markets in her short essays on Vineyard life. For the nostalgic visitor and for those who dream of vacationing there, "Martha's Vineyard Table" brings the island to life.
"Harris has focused in the past on writing about African diasporic food traditions, so her tackling of the Martha's Vineyard's food landscape may come as a surprise. The Vineyard Harris knows and loves is infinitely more colorful and diverse than the one most visitors may glimpse when they rent a cottage for a week. Hers is one born of years of home ownership and a deep understanding of the island legacy of African-American homeowners, Portuguese immigrants and Mexican restaurant laborers. Her page-long descriptions of each area of the island capture the essence of Menemsha, Edgartown and Vineyard Haven; readers will instantly feel like insiders. The easy, simply written recipes don't so much reflect quintessential Martha's Vineyard as they reflect Harris's personal background and experiences of a lifetime of weekends and summers, incorporating all cuisines from Jamaican (Red Pea Soup with Spinners made with kidney beans and dumplings) through Portuguese (Kale Soup with chorizo) to Southern African-American (Corn Fritters), and old island classics like Smoked Bluefish Salad, Quahog Stew and Cranberry-Apple Crisp. Harris's prose, combined with the clean, crisp photos (by Susie Cushner) make a perfect Martha's Vineyard guidebook. Harris instructs where to find the classic summer pies or a good loaf of bread, and what to serve your guests as they laze on the porch with a gin and tonic in one hand and a deviled egg in the other." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)