The recipes from this cookbook remind me of my grandmother’s tattered recipe cards I often flip through nostalgically, as if a testament chronicling her social life. I wonder which ones she made for dinner parties. I guess which ones my father would have liked best, and I remember the ones that were my favorites as a kid. Similarly, the recipes in Flavors bring to mind living—stories about food and companionship.

First published in 1978 by the Junior League of San Antonio, Flavors features drawings of certain San Antonio monuments and testaments about them from travelers and explorers. And, of course, the recipes. Chapters are divided (for the most part) by course: appetizers, beverages, soups, salads, specialty dishes, fish and shellfish, meats, game, poultry, vegetables, potpourri, breads, desserts, and pilon (extras). Obviously, there are Mexican influences (think Acapulco Jicama). But many of the dishes call for canned or powdered soups as bases; in other words, they reflect the times—great tasting food that’s easy to make.

Here’s a sampling of what to expect:
Cold Spinach Soup
Paella Salad
Oysters Rockefeller Olé
Texas Doves
Spicy Okra Gumbo
Pumpkin Cake Roll
Vinegar Pie