Dear Readers,

March again and boy does it have us doing a double take. You too? It's a strange feeling. Although a heavy dose of caution continues to dictate our schedules, there's light. Glimmers of hope. Things to look forward to. Speaking of which...

It's Women's History Month and if ever there was a year to celebrate the unseen work of women, it's this one. Being hunkered down at home has highlighted for so many the perseverance of women who hold down the fort in a multitude of spaces, including the kitchen. And while it's probably fair to say women execute the majority of meals on the homefront, they're still fighting for equity in many professional kitchens. Read on for some more thoughts on this and an invitation to a pretty big deal event with one of today's hottest culinary stars.

Be well.
Friday Five
This week's Friday Five is inspired both by the onset of Women's History Month and by an event we are hosting at on Wednesday, March 24 featuring Mashama Bailey, James Beard award-winning executive chef and partner at The Grey. Her new book, penned along with her business partner John O. Morisano is a truly stunning work filled with shrewd reflections on building a business from the ground up, race, class, gender and the challenges entrepreneurs face on the daily. Mixed in with honest and heartfilled prose are mouthwateringly good recipes including Salted Honey Chess Pie and a version of Bagna Cauda inspired by Mashama's time at Prune restaurant in New York City.

Speaking of Prune, reading the above book reminded me of Gabrielle Hamilton's stunningly good memoir Blood, Bones & Butter, hands down one of my all-time favorite books. For those of you not familiar with Gabrielle's work, she was, until Covid arrived, the chef and owner of the gem-like Prune nestled in NYC's East Village. She's also a tremendous food writer whose work has been featured in The New York Times. Want to learn more? Listen to her Design Matters conversation with Debbie Millman from last summer.

When asked about her culinary influences, Mashama goes straight to the legendary Edna Lewis. She chairs the Edna Lewis Foundation which honors the legacy of Lewis by creating opportunities for African Americans in the fields of cooking, agriculture, food studies, and storytelling. Want to learn more about the woman who brought Black Southern cooking to the forefront of our culinary history, highlighting the foundation it laid for all those who followed? Check out her much lauded biography, below.

Want to go deeper? We recommend High on the Hog from the leading historian of African American cooking and award-winning journalist, Jessica B. Harris. In Vogue's review they laud "her quest to trace the multiplicity of ways that American food has been enriched-and in many ways created by the Africans who were forced to immigrate to North America and their descendants." It's a rich and storied history and one that offers all sorts of new insight into what's on your plate.

Finally, I leave you with a current, brand-spanking-new release from the lovely and always down-to-earth Julia Turshen. I had the pleasure of briefly meeting Julia at a book signing a few years back and she is just as lovely in person as she is on the page. I'm diving into the Green Chile Braised Chicken Thighs with Pinto Beans and White Pizza-Style Kale this weekend. Want us to set a copy aside? Drop us a line.
New on the Shelf: Fiction
New on the Shelf: Nonfiction
Featured: Children's Picture Book
This big-hearted story of kindnessβ€”reminiscent of The Day the Crayons Quitβ€”is written by the bestselling author of Ordinary People Change the World and illustrated by the Caldecott Medal-winning creator of Beekle.

Sunday quit, just like that. She said she was tired of being a day. And so the other days of the week had no choice but to advertise: "WANTED: A NEW DAY. Must be relaxing, tranquil, and replenishing. Serious inquires only." Soon lots of hopefuls arrived with their suggestions, such as Funday, Bunday, Acrobaturday, SuperheroDay, and even MonstersWhoResembleJellyfishDay! Things quickly got out of hand . . . until one more candidate showed up: a little girl with a thank-you gift for Sunday. A jewel-toned book with a heartwarming message.
New on the Shelf: Middle Grade
New on the Shelf: Young Adult
Featured Event
Mashama Bailey + John O. Morisano
Wednesday, March 24
Barrett Bookstore welcomes the dynamic leadership team from the storied Savannah restaurant, The Grey. James Beard Award-winning Chef Mashama Bailey and her business partner John O. Morisano will come together for an intimate virtual conversation about food, entrepreneurship, race, gender, and class. This is a discussion you absolutely *do not* want to miss. 

Thank you to our amazing community partners!