Plenty of Southerners turn to food for comfort in trying times. A new cookbook adds another ingredient to the mix—music. All the Thyme in the World: A Collection of Recipes from the Grounded Music Industry gathers recipes from such country luminaries as Emmylou Harris (who shares her tried-and-true gingerbread), Dolly Parton (who passes on her mother-in-law’s chili and spaghetti), and Rosanne Cash (who makes her potato salad with celery, red onion, and minced fresh dill).
“When you get a cookbook passed down, it’s grease splattered, dog-eared, with notes in the margins,” says Maria Ivey, the Nashville music publicist who organized the project after she witnessed friends and colleagues lose gigs to COVID-19 and struggle to rebuild homes after this spring’s devastating tornadoes. Singer-songwriter Michaela Anne sent a beef stew, and Marshall Chapman contributed a pork noodle soup. Industry folks shared casseroles, cakes, and cocktails, and many explained their twists to long-standing traditions.
“I make what I’d call hillbilly fusion food,” says the singer-songwriter Elizabeth Cook, who gave a recipe for salmon with grits and kale. “I make meals that are related to my roots but expanded by things I’ve picked up on from traveling with my music.” In true Junior League cookbook fashion, all proceeds go to a cause: the Music Health Alliance’s COVID-19 and Nashville Tornado Relief Fund. “No one knows what the music business is going to look like on the other side of this,” Cook says. “This support may very well allow someone to keep moving forward in their beloved, hard-won calling.”