Texan Lisa Fain moved to the Big Apple before a person could find sweet tea and fried chicken at a hundred different Brooklyn hole-in-the-walls, and soon she found herself hungry for a taste of her home state. She began to document her efforts to recreate Lone Star favorites on a blog, The Homesick Texan, that has drawn fans not only in exile up north but also in Austin, Dallas, and Houston. This month, she released her second cookbook, The Homesick Texan’s Family Table. The recipes inside aren’t all Texas standards, but there’s no question that dishes such as ancho chile applesauce, coffee-chipotle pork chops, and tortilla-crusted tilapia draw heavily on the Lone Star canon.
As Fain knows well, holidays can be particularly tough for homesick Southerners. Her old-fashioned Divinities make a great addition to the Easter table, wherever you are. Meringue clouds studded with hunks of pecan, they’re bound to trigger a few sweet memories, especially among Southerners of a certain age. Feel free to personalize them with your own add-ins—she recommends peanuts, chocolate, or candied fruit.