This is a romantic look back at southern foods and foodways. Typical of many other such books following the Civil War, there is a touching, nostalgic (condescending) evocation of the author's Mammy and her cooking. Painful as some of this is to read today, we find an underlying love and admiration for the Mammy and a feeling of loss for the "good old days." If one can pass by this aspect of the book, one can learn a great deal about an antebellum Southern kitchen.Every chapter contains good, solid Southern recipes. Many pages are required to discuss all the variations on the theme of the pig and pork: how to select, cure, pickle, make hams, hang hams, smoke, Render Lard, Prepare Fried Hog's Feet, Souse and Hog's Foot Oil and Jelly. We also have Barbecued Rabbit, Squirrel Smothered, Possum Roasted, Fried Chicken, Fig Pudding, Fried Pies, Sweet Potato Custard, Molasses Pie, Blackberry Mush, and Baked Peaches.There are sections on Creole Cookery, and fascinating discussions on the foods and festivities associated with special occassions - Weddings, Christmas, Birthday Barbecues, and Political Barbecues, among others.