Back to the Family is a new cookbook by Art Smith, Oprah’s personal chef. A followup to his previous, bestselling work, Back to the Table, the book’s ongoing theme is that “food always tastes better with the ones you love” and that because family is one of the most important things in the world, we should take the time to get together with them. Food works as “glue” to bring about togetherness because it is such a universal unifier.
The book is divided up into chapters by gathering type – Church Suppers, Family Breakfasts, etc – with each chapter getting divided into smaller sub-sections. For example, the Family Breakfasts section features eggs and omelets; grits; casseroles; and hotcakes, biscuits and fritters. This structure makes it a bit unusual, as different chapters will sometimes repeat previous themes, but does make the book more interesting to browse through, if somewhat less intuitive to navigate.
The recipes are easy to follow, illustrated with mouthwatering photos and there is a good mix between simple recipes and more complex ones. Many of the dishes will be familiar, possibly already family favorites, and others will probable become favorites quickly. The dishes include Barbecue Worth Braggin’ About, Prosciutto and Focaccia Sandwiches, Turkey Chili, Easy Pizza Dough and Rum Raisin Sweet Potato Pie.