In this debut cookbook, Morgan fondly recalls foods from past Sunday afternoons and evenings that she spent visiting her relatives’ houses, strolling the farmers market, having picnics at the beach, or watching football games.
The author’s recipes here serve up nostalgia, along with some newer ideas to shake things up. Various chapters address breakfast food (“Carpe Your Diem”), picnic fare (“Perfecting the Piqué Nic”), TV-viewing snacks (“Couch Potato Fan Food”), fancier entrees (“Culinary Class”), and desserts (“Sundaes & Confectioneries”). These are all are rich, hearty foods made from scratch, and they’re not aimed at dieters, although the author does encourage sourcing ingredients from local farmers markets. The type is large and easy to read, and most recipes include large, full-color photographs by the author, which would have benefited from professional lighting and food styling. Although she includes serving sizes, she doesn’t supply preparation times. There are additional tips at the end of many recipes, such as “Gotta-Have Gadgets,” including a cherry-pitting tool, and “Sunday Jump Start,” offering tips on how to use leftovers. The recipes range from such classics as “Chicken ‘n Dumplins” to more exotic entries, such as “Roasted Pepper Chutney on Welsh Rarebit Sandwiches.” Many recipes are somewhere in between these categories—classics with a twist, such as “Tequila-Spiked Berry Shortcakes” or “Caramelized Onion and Goat Cheese Bread Pudding.” The introduction paints the cookbook as a tour through memory lane, but anecdotes about specific recipes are sparse. Some instructions could have left more room for adaptation; for instance, instead of saying “drop the batter into the lined muffin cups using a 3-inch ice-cream scoop,” the author could have simply described how full the cups should be. Other recipes depend on specific appliances, such as a bread machine, which isn’t always mentioned right away. That said, there are some fun recipes here for readers to try for their next family gathering or afternoon at the park.
An earnest, if uneven, cookbook for Sunday occasions.