August 31, 2017

Victuals Awarded James Beard Honors

In April of 2017, at the James Beard Foundation’s annual Books, Broadcast and Journalism Awards, Victuals was honored with awards in the American Cooking book category, and with the prestigious Cookbook Of The Year Award. 

At the ceremony, Ronni spoke of the honor and importance of sharing the stories of Appalachia in Victuals:

“I’m honored so deeply by this recognition from my colleagues, but the true honor belongs to the people of Appalachia, past, present, and future, whose lives, struggles, triumphs, and stories are the meat of ‘Victuals. Their generosity is boundless, their wisdom so deep, and that is the story I wanted to tell. To have it read, understood and celebrated, particularly at a point where the false and negative myths of the mountains are getting undeserved credit again, is a triumph of their indomitable spirit. I’m just proud I get to be a part of that story — and that’s the truth.”

You can read more about the James Beard Awards, and see a full list of winners at


March 9, 2017

Victuals Awarded IACP American Cookbook Honor!


This past Sunday evening, at the Palace Theater in Louisville, KY, The International Association of Culinary Professionals recognized Victuals with the 2017 award for best American Cookbook.

It was an absolute thrill even to be considered and we are honored by the recognition and deeply appreciative.  You can read more about the IACP’s awards, and see a full list of the 2017 winners, here.

September 1, 2016

A Recipe For Memory

Oxford American Magazine has published my essay “A Recipe For Memory” on their website,

“My mother was an instinctive cook. Words and directions did not hold much for her. She was a keen observer. She learned to cook from watching her aunts; her grandmother, Maw; her own mother. She loved recipes. Clipped them from the newspaper, kept them crammed in cookbooks and stuffed in bowls around the kitchen. She read them like fiction, intrigued by the possibilities they suggested, but hardly foolish enough to take them as literal instructions for real life.”

You can read the entire thing at

July 29, 2016

Victuals in Garden & Gun

A gathering on a porch in Kentucky.

Garden & Gun Magazine has an excerpt from Victuals in their August/September Issue, on newsstands now.

Rich Valley Road, the asphalt two-lane into Saltville, Virginia, runs through a wide valley along the base of Clinch Mountain. I slow down as much to savor the glide as for safety, and in slowing, I note what is happening roadside. The closer I get to town, the closer it seems that the small frame and brick houses sit to the road, their porches facing it.

I come from porch-sitting people, so it pleases me to see most of these are occupied. Wearing clothes that still speak of work—jeans and overalls, apron and housedress—the older folk on them have earned the right to sit idle at noonday. Even in the yard of a single-wide—flower bordered, well kept, yet porchless—three iron-haired men have arranged their lawn chairs out front in proper porch order: not clumped conversationally to face one another, but turned in a single line to the road, the better to see who is passing by. Raised in the vernacular, I don’t wave but lift two fingers from the eleven o’clock position on the steering wheel and give a short nod as I pass, receiving same in return.

Read the whole excerpt and get Ronni’s recipes for Chili Buns & Slaw Dogs and Rösti at