Southern Snacks Cookbook

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.

Milk Punch and Cookies

Milk Punch has roots in New Orleans, with a history as a hair-of-the-dog remedy. In fact, my best milk punch memory is enjoying a bit too much at a wonderful wedding brunch in New Orleans. And now, that bride makes milk punch for a Christmas party every year. I have to admit though, I […]


Peppermint Black Bottom Cupcakes

Last year, for the big family Christmas Eve celebration, I was tasked with providing a dessert. It’s a little tough to figure out the right dessert for a great big gathering, one that serves enough and pleases everyone. In the past I’ve made cakes and pies, but you always need to make […]

Hot Chocolate Pops

I was in a very fancy grocery store and saw a lovely, beautifully wrapped box of hot chocolate-on-a-stick. My first thought was “I can do that.” And those babies with their cellophane and ribbon and fancy label were selling for $10 apiece. Yea, I can do much better than that.

These pops are basically […]

Red Velvet Polka Dot Cookies

Red Velvet Cake is a real childhood memory for me. I have an aunt who makes a great one. But it was definitely not trendy or cool or in. Red Velvet was seriously down-home, real country food. It wasn’t even a standard on diner menus. But that all seems to have changed. I am […]

Tunnel of Fudge Cake

Before molten lava cake or chocolate fondants or fallen chocolate cake there was Tunnel of Fudge Cake. It’s a classic recipe, and I am sure many people have their own version. Tunnel of Fudge Cake is possibly the recipe that I have been making longer than any other, and more often. My mother passed […]

Chocolate Toffee Celebration Cake

Just under a year ago, I put up the first post on The Runaway Spoon, my instructions for real Buttermilk Fried Chicken with a story about my encounter with Julia Child. It took a couple of years of consideration and many months of planning and design to get the site started, but here I […]

S’More Cookies

The iconic S’more. That memory-provoking piece of gooey, melty childhood – summer camp, the Fourth of July, beach bonfires. I am not the first to re-imagine the s’more in a slightly less drippy, sticky and potentially hazardous form, but perhaps I am the laziest. The portable, storable S’more cookies need only six ingredients, one […]

Kiss Me, I’m Irish Cookies

St. Patrick’s Day is a silly holiday – in the best possible way. Grown folks dressing in green fuzzy wigs and big hats. Pinching co-workers and friends who forget to wear green. Drinking green beer. Singing Irish songs as if you just came over from the old country. In fact, celebrating a holiday largely […]