The Southern Sympathy Cookbook

I'm P.C., and I have studied food and cooking around the world, mostly by eating, but also through serious study. Coursework at Le Cordon Bleu London and intensive courses in Morocco, Thailand and France have broadened my culinary skill and palate. But my kitchen of choice is at home, cooking like most people, experimenting with unique but practical ideas.

I live, mostly in my kitchen, in my hometown of Memphis, Tennessee.

Marinated Summer Squash Salad

Squash season is starting, and everyone I know is always looking for new ways to use the bounty. Everything old is new again though, so I pulled out this recipe. In recent years, I have seen an explosion of fancy squash salads on restaurant menus and on Pinterest. The trend seems to be thinly […]

Old Fashioned Chicken Salad with Cooked Dressing

I am a late in life lover of chicken salad. As a child, I had an aversion to this type of mixed up dish coated in dressing – I felt they were primarily tools my mom used to hide things I didn’t want to eat. I was always concerned that chicken salad or casseroles […]

Cream of Celery Soup

Cream of Celery Soup

Celery, for many years, was a mystery to me. I know it adds the important base flavors to a million dishes, so I sauté it up with the green bell pepper, onion and celery trinity of Cajun cooking, and with carrots and onions in the soffrito of Italian and Spanish food and the mirepoix […]

Hachis Parmentier (French Cottage Pie)

My introduction to this French country dish was, oddly, in London.  And the first time I had it, I had never heard of it.  Since my graduate school days, I have made an annual pilgrimage to London, extending the trip each year, to spend enough time to settle in and not feel rushed or […]

Homemade Bloody Mary Mix (with canning instructions)

When tomatoes are is season, or growing on my vines if I’m lucky, I preserve them in any way I can think of.  I make sauce, tomato soup base and just plain old puree and stack them up in ziptop bags in the freezer.  Sometimes I can whole tomatoes, but now I’ve learned you […]

Tomato Aspic

Nothing motivates one to get in the kitchen more than a funeral.  We all seem to harbor that primordial need to comfort with food.  And there are fixed ideas – recipes that we keep in mind, or maybe on a card at the front of the recipe box for easy access.  A hearty, comforting […]

Roasted Vegetable Stracciatella

Italian egg-drop soup.  That’s how I have heard versions of this soup described.  And there appear to be many versions, with light chicken broth, or added spinach or chicken. In fact, the first time I concocted this soup, I didn’t know stracciatella was an actual thing.  It was pure kitchen happenstance, and one little […]