There’s a heaping plateful of love for Kansas cuisine in Saveur’s August/September issue.
By Sarah Gish
On the cover of the food magazine’s special “Bountiful Prairie” issue: A mouthwatering stack of golden, crispy fried chicken from Rye, the Leawood restaurant owned by James Beard Award-winning chef Colby Garrelts and his wife Megan.
Inside, there’s a 23-page section devoted to Kansas. In the introduction, local cookbook author (and Chow Town contributor) Judith Fertig writes about food that’s special to the Sunflower State: “bison burgers, smoky chili, heirloom tomatoes and iced sugar cookies.” Fertig also writes that Kansas “is a place that can free you in unexpected ways, a place where the Beat writer William S. Burroughs was as much a part of the local fabric as our church ladies with their chili suppers and homemade cinnamon rolls.”
Saveur’s “Bountiful Prairie” issue is chock full of gorgous food photography -- a bundle of crimson and orange carrots at the Lawrence farmers’ market, freshly picked tomatoes from Heartland Farm in Pawnee Rock, Kan. -- and classic comfort-food recipes.
The Garreltses contributed recipes for Extra-Crispy Fried Chicken, Red Chili and Lemon Curd Layer Cake with White Chocolate Buttercream. Subarna Bhattachan, the Lawrence restaurateur behind Zen Zero and La Parrilla, shared his recipe for Curried Potato Salad. Home cooks from Tonganoxie and Lawrence pitched in their recipes for Creamed Corn Casserole, “Perfect” Potato Salad and Summer Succotash made with fresh sweet corn, cherry tomatoes and edamame.
The issue reads like a love letter to the American heartland. Michael Bauer, executive food and wine editor of the San Francisco Chronicle, shares sweet memories from his childhood in Chanute, Kan. Lawrence writer Kerri Conan praises the food at Rye -- “the chicken livers taste like the finest foie gras wrapped in a crackling crust” -- and Lawrence, “the potluckiest town in America.”
The latest issue of Saveur also includes sections on Oklahoma and Nebraska. Craving more comfort food recipes from the heartland? We know how to make Megan Garrelts’ individual berry cobblers, Judith Fertig’s grilled peaches, and buttery biscuits that rival the ones served at Abilene’s Brookville Hotel.
Enterprise reporter Sarah Gish writes dining and bar guides for Ink magazine. She also writes a monthly cooking feature for The Star and tweets @sarah_gish.