Crepes, Hot Cocoa and The Irresistable Table

I love cookbooks.  I love big ones, small ones, old and new ones.  And before this starts to sound like a Dr. Seuss book, I’ll add I have all of the above. The oldest one I own is my mother’s cookbook from the 1950’s.  I can’t bear to part with it, but honestly I’ve never cooked a thing from it. I’m not a complicated-use-a-million-ingredients kind of cook.  I’m a simple-throw-it-all-together-make-it-easy-as-possible kind of cook. I don’t often measure, unless I’m baking. In my kitchen my motto is, “The bigger the mess the better the food”. At least, that’s what I like to think!

I distinctly remember my mother teaching me to make cream of tomato soup from the can when I was probably 6 or 7 years old. I stood on a chair at the stove, stirring for what seemed like forever.  Watching the milk mix in with the condensed soup was my time to be creative and swirl designs in the pan. I grew from making soup to being responsible for feeding the family in my early teens. Over the years I’ve created my own concoctions, mostly using the least expensive and fewest ingredients as possible. These creations came from necessity when my children were small. We had a family of five to feed on an income of around $8hr. With two growing boys, it was a weekly challenge that included things like tuna casserole, Texas Skillet (my own recipe) and lots of spaghetti.

Having said all this, I had the opportunity recently to get a copy of Mary DeMuth’s newest release, “The Irresistible Table”. As much as I love cookbooks, I had no idea what this one would include. Upon first glance, I wasn’t sure there was anything in the book I could reasonably use for my family. Mary is an accomplished cook and her latest cookbook has many intriguing recipes.  Most of them were new to me, and I wasn’t sure how they would be received by my simple, used to my oh-so-southern cooking, eating family.

It was however, very intriguing.  I decided the crepes looked fun, challenging and used ingredients I had handy.This was a new recipe for me, as pancakes and waffles are our weekend breakfast tradition. With two little ones in the house and their dad in tow, safe and simple are usually our best bet. I’ll just tell you right up front, we were not disappointed. The crepes were easy to make, and I had fun learning something new. I also had a great time making it.

I pulled out my blender I found on Freecycle, and threw it all together. I used my small frying pan, and was excited when I flipped the first one and it looked, well, like I thought it should. My point to telling you this is a recipe you don't need fancy ingredients or appliances just to make it. It fits right in to this southern girl's list of recipes. It's Papaw's job to cook on the weekends, but I can tell you this gem of a recipe will be made by Nana on a regular basis. The truth is, I've never had crepes before.

Beyond easy, the crepes were a huge hit with the family. Just the thought of making them inspired me to get creative as I put out toppings and made the table look inviting to those of us sitting around enjoying our breakfast together. It was when I took this picture I realized “The Irresistible Table” was sitting in front of me. The excitement of presenting the new recipe to my family, the motivation to create a pretty table and bringing my family to the table together are exactly what this cookbook is about.

I quickly threw together the Hot Chocolate recipe while I was at it.  This is the creamiest hot chocolate, and I feel sure I won’t ever go back to packets again. This was a perfect match on a cold winter morning, and one we relished as we chatted over ideas on how to top the next crepe, and what was going on next in our day. The children were a little apprehensive, but we explained they were like pancakes and they dug right in.

I’m excited to find new things to make from this cookbook. What I love is while there may be similar recipes out there, Mary has not only tested these but she’s used the in her own kitchen with her family. She’s made changes to the traditional to bring out the best in her food.

If you are at all like me, and love cookbooks and recipes I highly recommend this book to you. If you are a gourmet cook, or (like me) a simple throw it all together cook this is the book for you.  You can purchase this on Amazon in Kindle or Paperback. I’d love to know what you think, but I’m sure Mary would love it even more. You can read more about it on her website here.

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