Tanya Holland’s California Soul: Recipes from a Culinary Journey West

Ten Speed: Crown. Oct. 2022. 256p. ISBN 9781984860729. $35. COOKING
Holland’s (Brown Sugar Kitchen; New Soul Cooking) cookbook is the real deal—melding a West Coast perspective, cultural history, profiles of Black-owned California businesses, and recipes that are at once familiar and unique to the Cali soul food vibe. Here readers will find mini hoecakes with smoked salmon and crème fraîche, beluga-lentil hash, fresh gingerbread cupcakes with molasses buttercream, and collard-green tabbouleh. The photography and layout are unique, with color-drenched spreads and beautiful tableware on display. The book’s close-up encounters with California farmers, cheese makers, ranchers, brewers, and chefs, interspersed with recipes, will make readers feel as though they are on a tour through the history of Holland’s family as they settled in Oakland, CA. Arranged by season, the recipes pay close attention to which ingredients will be on hand, accessible, affordable, and fit for a wonderful meal.
VERDICT Lovely food, resonant history, and high production values make Holland’s latest a can’t-miss book.
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