The Providence and Rhode Island Cookbook: Big Recipes from the Smallest State

The Providence and Rhode Island Cookbook: Big Recipes from the Smallest State

by Linda Beaulieu

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Rhode Islanders have an ongoing fascination with food. Some attribute this to the state's ethnic mix: a large Italian population that has an inherent love of food, wine, and the good life; people of French and Portuguese descent, whose ancestral recipes are now a part of Rhode Island cuisine; and the Native Americans who were the first to use the bounty of the sea and land to prepare their meals. Whatever the reasons, Rhode Island's food traditions are steeped in history and today are part of a vibrant food subculture. In The Providence and Rhode Island Cookbook, author Linda Beaulieu explores the food of the Ocean State, especially in and around Providence, and reveals how such a small state can have so many big flavors.
With more than 200 recipes and engaging sidebars about food, local lore, and state history, this book celebrates the dishes and culinary terms that are unique to Rhode Island. Home cooks will learn how to make their own Wimpy Skippys (spinach pies) or Zeppoles, and visitors will discover what a quahog is, how a cabinet can fit neatly in their hand, and why an Awful, Awful isn't awful at all.

Celebrate the State's Biggest Flavors with Recipes Such As:

South County Chicken Potpie
Buddy Cianci's Marinara Sauce
Lobster and Asparagus Agnolotti
Stuffed Quahogs
Lobster and Corn Fritters
Fried Doughboys with Honey Butter
Glocester Cranberry Apple Pie
Portuguese Sweet Bread
Rhode Island Indian Meal Cornbread
Zucchini Ribbons with Tomatoes and Black Olives
Narragansett Strudel
Little Compton Corn Chowder
Block Island Monkfish Wrapped in Bacon

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780762751822
Publisher: Globe Pequot Press
Publication date: 11/01/2005
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
File size: 8 MB

About the Author

Linda Beaulieu is an award-winning food and travel writer. She is the author of Divine Providence: An Insider's Guide to the City's Best Restaurants and The Grapevine Guide to Rhode Island's Best Restaurants. She received the prestigious James Beard Award for magazine writing for an article on Native American food, which appeared in the National Culinary Review.

Read an Excerpt

Rhode Island food is quirky and its desserts are no less unusual. The Avondale Swan glides onto our tables in a pool of chocolate syrup; we bite into cloudlike doughboys even though they are still too hot to eat simply because we can't wait; and what other state can lay claim to a dessert called the Tipsy Parson, a sherry-soaked sponge cake layered with custard. The state's ethnic heritage shows up in desserts our grandparents taught us how to make, and some of our most delicious sweet endings can be traced all the way back to the Native Americans who first lived in Rhode Island.


One can only imagine how this triflelike dessert got its name. Early British settlers in Rhode Island are among those credited with bringing the recipe to America. Under the innocent guise of having dessert, people could imbibe and perhaps even become a bit drunk.

1 (8-inch) sponge cake, about 1 and 1/2 inches thick
2/3 cup sweet sherry
3 eggs, plus 2 additional yolks
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 cups light cream
2 teaspoons vanilla extract butter, as needed
1/2 cup slivered almonds, toasted
1/4 cup slivered almonds, toasted and crushed

On a sheet pan, split the sponge cake into two layers. Sprinkle each layer generously with the sherry. Place in the refrigerator.

To make the custard:
In the top part of a double boiler, combine the eggs, egg yolks, sugar, and salt. Cook over, but not touching, simmering water.

In a saucepan, heat the cream just until it begins to steam. Add the cream gradually to the egg mixture, stirring constantly, and continue to cook until the mixtures coats a metal spoon. Remove the top part of the double boiler from the heat. Stir in the vanilla extract. Allow to cool to room temperature, then refrigerate.

Generously butter an 8-inch deep spring form pan. Place one layer of the sponge cake on the bottom of the pan. Sprinkle 1/2 cup of almonds over the cake, then spread a layer of the custard.

Cover with the second layer of sponge cake and the remaining custard. Sprinkle evenly with the 1/4 cup crushed almonds. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving. Unmold onto a chilled platter.

Makes 6 servings.

Table of Contents

(1) Introduction (2) Breakfast (3) Lunch (4) Dinner (5) Desserts and Beverages

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