Virtual - Amy C Evans and Martha Hall Foose - A Good Meal Is Hard to Find

Tuesday, July 20, 2021 - 6:00pm to 7:30pm

This event will be hosted on Zoom. Click here to register.

Put on your apron and get ready to visit with Amy and Martha for a virtual cocktail hour as they discuss their collaboration, share a couple of recipes, and introduce you to some of the ladies featured in their book, A Good Meal Is Hard to Find: Storied Recipes from the Deep South. You’ll meet strong women who don’t mind eating alone and can do for themselves, quirky gals who have oddball habits and are stuck in their ways, and good talkers who like to eat cake for breakfast and will gladly accept the offer of well-considered cocktail. FEATURED RECIPES: Maxine’s Pin Curl (cocktail), Georgia Kay’s Marinated Green Bean Millefiori (small bite), Duchess’s Mayonnaise (for when even Duke’s won’t do). Get your groceries early so you can cook along with them!

Featured Recipes


Maxine stayed in to ‘tend to a few things. She appreciated Rosemarie’s invitation—and told her as much—but Maxine just couldn’t bear the thought of attending another one of her venomous gossip sessions masquerading as cocktail hour. She made a fine and stiff drink herself, thank you, and planned on sipping one as she caught up on her house chores. Better to get something done than rub elbows with those old hens.

Makes 1 highball

Ice cubes for shaker and glass

1 jigger (11/2 ounces) gin

1 tablespoon triple sec

1 teaspoon lime marmalade

Splash seltzer

Fresh lime wedge, if desired 

Fill your highball glass and cocktail shaker with ice cubes. Put the gin, triple sec, and marmalade in your cocktail shaker with ice. Shake for one whole minute. Strain into your glass and add a splash of bubbly water. Garnish with a lime wedge, if desired.


Georgia Kay always looked forward to snapping beans. It seemed the only time she had to herself anymore. This year, she doubled her usual planting of pole beans, just so she could spend the fall snapping and canning. She knew she set herself up for more work, but it’d be worth it. Now all Georgia Kay had to do was make it through the summer.

1 pound fresh haricot verts or tender green beans, blanched

11/2 cups Vegetable Marinade (see Notes) or your favorite vinaigrette

1 loaf sliced white sandwich bread, crusts removed

1/4 cup Durkee’s Famous Sauce (substitute Dijon mustard, if you absolutely must)

1/4 cup Duchess’s Mayonnaise (see Notes) or your mayonnaise of choice

4 ounces cream cheese, softened

Put your green beans in a resalable bag with your marinade and refrigerate for at least 2 hours and up to 24 hours. When ready to make your roll-ups, remove the crusts from your bread and roll each slice flat with a rolling pin. Make a spread with your Durkee’s sauce, mayonnaise, and cream cheese. Give each slice of bread a thin coat of the spread. Place 3 green beans in a stack near one edge of the bread and roll the bread around the beans tightly making a cylinder filled with beans. Place the rolls, seam side down, on a baking sheet. Cover with kitchen wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight. When ready to serve, cut each roll crosswise into 4 pieces. 

NOTES: To blanch green beans: Bring a gallon of water to a boil with 1/2 teaspoon baking soda. Fill a large bowl with ice water. Drop the beans into the boiling water and let them cook for 3 minutes. Drain the beans in a colander. Plunge the colander into the ice water. Drain the beans when cool. 

This is a great marinade for all sorts of vegetables.

1 cup soybean oil

1/4 cup white wine vinegar

2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

1/2 teaspoon honey

1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard

2 garlic cloves, very finely chopped

2 tablespoons finely chopped shallots

2 tablespoons very finely chopped red bell pepper

1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt

1/4 teaspoon dried marjoram

Pinch of red pepper flakes

Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Put everything in a jar with a tight-fitting lid and shake until well combined. 



Our community is practically bound by mayonnaise.

Makes a heaping cup 

1 large egg 

1 large egg yolk

1 tablespoon white vinegar

1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice

1 teaspoon fine sea salt

1 teaspoon dry mustard 

Pinch of ground cayenne pepper

1/2 cup canola oil

1/2 cup avocado oil

To make with an immersion or stick blender: Put your egg and yolk, vinegar, lemon juice, salt, mustard, and cayenne pepper in a wide-mouthed pint jar (large jars help reduce splatters). Stand your immersion blender up in the jar. Slowly pour your oils over the eggs.

Hold your blender tight against the bottom of your jar and give it a few pulses at low speed until the mixture begins to turn creamy and opaque at the bottom. Continue to slowly pulse with the blender touching the bottom, jostling the blender around a bit, for 1 minute or less, or until the mayonnaise begins to thicken. Plunge the blender up and down only until well combined. 

To make in a food processor or traditional blender: Double all of the ingredients because many blenders and food processors are too large to effectively emulsify your mayonnaise. Combine your oils in a liquid measuring cup. In the bowl of a food processor, or blender pitcher, pulse your eggs and yolks, vinegar, lemon juice, salt, mustard, and cayenne pepper until well combined. With the machine running, drizzle in your oils in a very slow, steady stream until the mixture thickens and begins to turn creamy and opaque and all of the oil is incorporated. 

This can be stored in the refrigerator in a few days. 

AMY C. EVANS is the co-author of A Good Meal Is Hard to Find: Storied Recipes from the Deep South (Chronicle Books, 2020). She is an award-winning artist, writer, and documentarian based in Houston, Texas. Amy graduated from the city’s acclaimed High School for the Performing and Visual Arts (HSPVA), holds a BFA in Printmaking from the Maryland Institute College of Art, and an MA in Southern Studies from the University of Mississippi. Her paintings have appeared in Southern Living, Southern Cultures, and The Bitter Southerner. Her writing has appeared in Saveur, The Bitter Southerner, The Local Palate, and Cornbread Nation 5: The Best of Southern Food Writing. Amy built the documentary program at the Southern Foodways Alliance, headquartered at the University of Mississippi, where she served as their lead oral historian for more than a decade. The Mississippi Historical Society has twice recognized her work, and Food & Wine magazine named Amy one of the “most fearsome talents” in the culinary world. She returned home to Houston in 2014 and embarked on an exciting freelance career, utilizing her varied skills and interests to explore new methods of storytelling. Amy's latest project is Houston in 2020: Self-Employed Black Artists, funded by a grant from the Houston Arts Alliance.

MARTHA HALL FOOSE is the co-author of A Good Meal Is Hard to Find: Storied Recipes from the Deep South (Chronicle Books, 2020). Martha’s cookbook career began with Screen Doors & Sweet Tea: Recipes and Tales of a Southern Cook, the best-selling homage to Southern cooking, won the James Beard Award for American Cooking and The Southern Independent Booksellers Award. Her well-received follow-up, A Southerly Course: Recipes & Stories from Close to Home, found its way on to Best of the Best lists from NPR and Food & Wine. She co-authored Oh Gussie! Cooking and Visiting in Kimberly’s Southern Kitchen with Kimberly Schlapman of Little Big Town. Martha also co-authored My Two Souths: Blending the Flavors of India into a Southern Kitchen with chef Asha Gomez which won the 2017 Gourmand World Cookbook Award for Best Indian Cuisine, garnered a James Beard Nomination for Best Cookbook: American, and won Food 52’s Piglet Award for Cookbook of the Year. Her second collaboration with Asha Gomez, I Cook in Color: Bright Flavors from My Kitchen and Around the Globe, is scheduled for publication in 2020. Martha makes her home in the Mississippi Delta with her husband and son.


A Good Meal Is Hard to Find: Storied Recipes from the Deep South (Southern Cookbook, Soul Food Cookbook) Cover Image
ISBN: 9781452169781
Availability: NOT ON OUR SHELVES. Usually Arrives in 4-7 Business Days
Published: Chronicle Books - April 28th, 2020