Enjoy your January DeSoto Magazine!

Cooking during a Pandemic

This past year, cooking at home became a thing again. People have joked about the COVID-19 pounds they’ve put on, but many found a creative niche they didn’t know they had. Whether developing new recipes or rediscovering the joys of baking, home cooking has provided some comfort during a stressful year. Two trusted national magazines – Good Housekeeping and Women’s Day – reported that recipe searches on their websites were up by 227 percent over the previous year. To keep the momentum going, the DeSoto Magazine editorial team has put together an amazing array of stories about food this month.

The South, especially Memphis, is known for its barbecue. We asked writer Jason Frye, who has served as a judge for many ‘cue competitions, to look into the barbecue styles and explain the differences. This mouthwatering story will help you decide whether you want a vinegary Carolina sauce, a Memphis rub, or some Texas heat with your next barbecue meal.

​Food trucks have been around a long time, but writer Karon Warren found they are enjoying a new kind of popularity with social distancing and many restaurant closures. With more than 23,000 food trucks nationwide, these mobile vendors offer a wide range of cuisines as well as convenience.

Whether you are attending a small get-together or an elaborate reception chances are you’ll find a charcuterie board or two. I talked to Chef Cole Ellis at the Delta Meat Market in Cleveland, Miss., and cookbook author Marissa Mullin about how to create these photogenic feasts for the senses.

We have many other food-related stories, including one by Pamela Keene who explains why buttermilk is a cultural staple in the South. Bakers have known for ages that this product is more than just a beverage. It is essential for Southern cornbread, poundcakes, and – as my grandmother used to say – “jes’ pie,” as in buttermilk pie.

As a bonus, we’ve included several recipes in our stories that we hope will get you through the next few months as the pandemic winds down.

Bon Appetit!