Every week for the next year, I’m going to choose a Junior League cookbook, write about its history, and prepare a meal that’s representative of the culinary heritage of the region.  I’m starting with the oldest Junior League cookbook still in print, Charleston Receipts, and ending with my beloved Los Angeles.

Each week, I’ll do about three posts.  The first will introduce the cookbook’s distinctive points and regional flavors, the second will provide readers with a few extra recipes, and the third will chronicle my cooking adventures, triumphs, and disasters with said book.

Here’s to a year of gumbos, spoonbreads, tortes, and tamales, roasts, fresh produce, chowders, and sauerbraten.  If I don’t gain at least 10 pounds in the process, I will consider the project an abject failure.