Occasional cooks and seasoned chefs will find something to suit their palates in Deep In the Heart, a collection of recipes from the Dallas Junior Forum. In its ninth printing, the cookbook is well organized, with easy-to-follow recipes. Chapters correspond with courses of a meal: appetizers and beverages, soups, salads and dressings, main dishes, vegetables, desserts, and hodgepodge. Individual dishes are then loosely grouped by genre or main ingredient. (For example, all the cheese balls appear together.)
The cookbook also offers helpful hints in the form of subheadings such as “Kids Love It!” or “Wonderful and Healthy.” Pay attention to the small hearts dispersed throughout, as well, with suggestions on everything from how long dishes keep and whether they can be frozen to how to liven up a salad with colored onion rings and the best way to slice bread.
Recipes range from quick favorites like Bourbon Wieners and Chicken Pot Pie and I Don’t Care to more sophisticated offerings such as Hot Crabmeat Cheese Puffs and Caviar Pie. There is an extensive chapter on vegetables, but the most compelling section is on desserts: Praline Cheesecake, Pina Colada Cake, Pineapple Macadamia Pie, Milky Way Cake, and Southern Chocolate Pecan Pie.
Colorful illustrations, poems, and witty rhymes add whimsy; but the back of the book provides the basics, including sample menus, food equivalents, measurements, and substitutions.
Proceeds from the sale of Deep In the Heart benefit the Ronald McDonald House, Juliette Fowler Home, schools through “Kids On the Block” puppets, the Dallas Children’s Advocacy Center, the Neighborhood Service Council, Family Gateway, and Wipe Out Kids’ Cancer.