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The creator of southern revival cooking, Alexander Smalls is the owner of Smalls & Co., a catering business with a clientele that includes celebrities such as Denzel Washington, Spike Lee, and Toni Morrison; and is the former owner of New York’s celebrated Cafe Beulah. A classically trained baritone, Smalls lives in New York City.
GRACE THE TABLE
Harlem Moon – November 2, 2004
An atmospheric memoir filled with marvelous tales about the joys of food, music, and life—seasoned with one hundred of Alexander Smalls’s celebrated world-class recipes.
In Grace the Table, the father of southern revival cooking serves up a delectable combination of memoir and cookbook as he recounts his life’s journey from his hometown of Spartanburg, South Carolina, to the cosmopolitan cities of Europe and into the homes and hearts of Manhattan’s socialites and celebrities.
With an unabashed passion for food and a buoyant personality, Smalls recollects his grandparents’ Low Country cooking, and the almost spiritual power of a panful of hot buttermilk biscuits with fresh butter and sorghum. “Food was wealth to us,” Smalls writes, “the kitchen was Fort Knox, and I felt rich just opening the refrigerator.” Leaving small-town South Carolina, Smalls would become a world-class opera singer, an odyssey that introduced a wealth of new tastes and led him to his ultimate calling: cooking. He feasted on Chinese takeout in New York, Steak au Poivre in Paris, Grilled Swordfish Rolls in Palermo—but everywhere he traveled, he carried with him the cuisine of the American South.
In this unique book, Smalls shares his stories, family photographs, and one hundred of his inspiring culinary creations—sumptuous feasts, perfect for long dinners with family and friends. Sweet Potato Waffles and Southern Fried Chicken, Stuffed Veal Chops and Seafood Puppies, Pan-Roasted Salmon and Chocolate Raspberry Bread Pudding…just six of the glorious treats invented during Smalls’s adventures. A memoir sprinkled with recipes that are a delicious blend of traditional fare and international flair, Grace the Table will remind you of home no matter where you come from.
Praise for GRACE THE TABLE
“Alexander Smalls dances and sings and cooks his way through a brilliant and fascinating portrait of Southern comfort.”—Cicely Tyson