Blogger Aid - View and Review: Simple Fresh Southern

As some of you may already know, I am a member of Blogger Aid. Blogger Aid-Changing the Face of Famine is a group of bloggers determined to aid in the relief of world hunger. To find out more or to band together with us, please click on the link above.

Blogger Aid has a wonderful program called View and Review. It is an opportunity for members to view cookbooks generously provided by various publishers and food purveyors. We are then able to prepare some of the scrumptious recipes and write up a blog review.

I was thrilled to receive The Lee Bros. Simple Fresh Southern from
Clarkson Potter Publishers. This cookbook is right up my alley. It's just bursting with simple but delightfully fresh and flavorful southern inspired recipes. The photographs are spectacular as well.

It was difficult to choose which recipes to prepare for this review. They are all so tempting! I finally settled on Whole Roasted Chicken with Potatoes and Onions and Butternut Squash Soup with Rosemary.


Whole Roasted Chicken with Potatoes and Onions

1 large yellow or white onion, quartered
1 large carrot, peeled and cut into chunks
1 pound Yukon Gold or other waxy yellow potatoes, cut into 1 1/2" pieces
3 tbsp olive oil
2 tsp kosher salt
3/4 tsp freshly cracked black pepper
One 3 1/2 pound whole chicken, giblets removed, rinsed and dried inside and out
1 large lemon, halved
1/2 cup chicken broth
1/2 cup dry white wine

Heat oven to 425 degrees with rack positioned in the middle of the oven.

Combine the onion, carrot, and potatoes in a medium cast iron skillet or 2 quart oven proof baking dish. Drizzle the olive oil over the vegetables, sprinkle with 1/2 tsp of the salt and 1/4 tsp pepper, and toss until evenly coated. Place the chicken, breast side down, on the vegetables and squeeze one lemon half over the back of the chicken. Season the chicken with 1/2 tsp of the salt and 1/4 tsp of the pepper. Roast for 20 minutes, then remove briefly from the oven.

Lift the bird, pour the broth and wine over the vegetables in the pan, and move them around a bit with a wooden spoon. Using two set of tongs, flip the bird over so that it is breast side up. Squeeze the remaining lemon over the chicken and season with the remaining salt and pepper. Roast until the skin is nicely browned on top, about 40 minutes.

Transfer the chicken to a cutting board, tent loosely with aluminum foil, and let it rest for 10 minutes. Carve the chicken and serve with the vegetables and spoonfuls of the lemony pan sauce.

I loved being able to roast the chicken right in my cast iron pan. It had a wonderful lemon flavor and was juicy and delicious. I will make this one again for sure.


The next recipe is Butternut Squash Soup with Rosemary. I think this would be a wonderful start to any Thanksgiving dinner!


1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp minced fresh rosemary
1/3 cup finely diced country or Serrano ham
1 tbsp minced garlic (about 3 large cloves)
One 2 lb butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1/2 inch dice (4 cups)
1 1/2 tsp kosher salt, or to taste
1/2 cup whole or low fat buttermilk, plus more to garnish
Freshly ground black cracked pepper, for garnish

Pour olive oil into a 12 inch skillet set over medium low heat. Once the oil warms, addd the rosemary, ham, and garlic and stir constantly for about 2 minutes, until the garlic is fragrant but not browning.

Turn the heat to low, add the squash, and stir to about 30 seconds to coat the pieces with oil. Let cook for a minute linger, still stirring. Then add 3 cups water and cover the skillet. Turn up the heat to medium high and bring to a boil. Turn down heat so that the liquid is simmering, stir in the salt, and cook, covered, for 7 minutes, until the squash is tender but not dissolving into the soup.

Using an immersion blender or transferring to a food processor (in batches if necessary), blend the soup until just a few chunks of squash and ham are still visible in the puree. Add the buttermilk and stir to incorporate.


Serve in large bowls, and as a final touch, loosely stir a tbsp of buttermilk into each, leaving a trail of white. Season with a grind of black pepper.

This is a lovely soup! If you have vegetarians coming over for Thanksgiving you could leave out the ham. I think it would be every bit as terrific.


I appreciate being able to be a part of such a worthwhile organization and to have had the opportunity to view and review this beautiful cookbook!

Blogger Aid
has a new cookbook coming out very soon. It has loads of amazing Blogger Aid member recipes inside and the proceeds go toward such a worthwhile cause. Please look for it on Amazon.

Thanks for stopping over today and please be sure to go take a look at
Blogger Aid-Changing the Face of Famine. You'll be glad you did!!


Christine aka Mistress of Cakes said...

You are such a sweet gal.....great dinner for sure!

singedwingangel said...

Those look wonderful and I am a big chicken maker.... Great way to give back my dear

Kristin said...

I think your mission is very inspirational and those recipes sound to die for!

Jenn said...

I think you picked the perfect recipe. I'm sure it made for a tasty and great dinner.

Cairo Typ0 said...

It sounds like this organization does some very good work. :) Love the sound of that soup!

Dajana said...

Both recipes are wonderful, that chicken looks so good I'd reach for it through my comp screen.
It's wonderful that you're part of such a noble cause.

Angie's Recipes said...

Both dishes are really tempting. You are such a sweet Angel..:-)

figtree said...

This is wonderful! This is the perfect din din.

Ginger said...

Awesome post. The chicken really looks like it could be on the menu of a fine diner. The soup look delectable and I am definitely going to give both a try. When does the cookbook come out because they can count one as sold!

PS I think your new hobby is going to photography. Your photos get better and better (If that is even possible because they were awesome to start out with!)

Joanne said...

Blogger Aid is such a great cause! And the View and Review feature is definitely a great thing.

I hear this cookbook is supposed to be amazing and if all of the recipes are as good as the ones you created, then it must be!

Susan said...

Your chicken looks outstanding, but ahhhh..that soup!

Natashya KitchenPuppies said...

Mmm - just look at that chicken! You are lucky I wasn't in the kitchen with you... or you would have had to take a picture of a chicken with a big bit out of it! ;-)
The book looks very interesting indeed.

TKW said...

What a great cause! I'm definitely going to look into this!

♥peachkins♥ said...

Oh my,this is the perfect dinner. I love how you took the photos of the soup.

Noelle said...

the dinner looks divine...and your photography skills are top-notch. what a great thing you're doing!

Lisa said...

A chicken roasting in the oven is a beautiful thing. It makes the whole house smell so warm and wonderful!

Katherine Aucoin said...

what an honorable cause. Your chicken looks perfect!

Jhonny walker said...

Like the cause..will look into this one...but if for nothing...for those recipes...great...lovely...flavorful..and so so healthy too :)

good going!

Young Wife said...

Stopping by from SITS. The chicken looks divine, and I think it's so great that this is for a good cause.

teresa said...

excellent cause! i love roasted chicken, i think i even like it more then roasted turkey, so good!

Mimi said...

The pic of the chicken and potatoes made me want to lick the screen!

giz said...

Great job with both the review and the gorgeous dinner. I'm so wanting to try southern flavours now and think I just might have to pick up a copy of this book.

Chiara "Kika" Assi said...

What a great project, thanks for sharing the info with us! And that chicken is mouthwatering. Wish I were home eating it!

Pam said...

Wow that chicken looks amazing!

WhisperingWriter said...

Mmm, my mouth is watering..

Cinnamon-Girl Reeni♥ said...

There's nothing better than a roasted chicken! What a gorgeous sight! And the soup is a definite favorite!

Katy ~ said...

Kim, many blessings on your loving and giving heart.

These meals are just sensational. Excellent choice. I'm going to have to look for the book. Oh darn, grins.

Faith said...

Your chicken came out perfect and that soup looks to die for! Bogger Aid sounds like a great cause to support...I'm off now to check it out!

Fresh Local and Best said...

This is such an impressive and creative way to fight fight hunger. Bravo!

girlichef said...

This looks like a delicious book...delicious choice of recipes :D

Juliana said...

Wow, what a nice meal, love them both, the chicken looks fabulous and the soup so creamy and tasty. Great pictures!

Anonymous said...

Both the soup and the chicken look outstanding! Sounds like a great cookbook!

Sweet and Savory said...

You probably know but for everyone else, Blogger Aid cookbook is out.

Thanks for the great review. I love that Squash soup.

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