Your Best Recipe Could Be in a New Amelia Cookbook

By Wilma Allen

Area cooking enthusiasts are invited to submit their favorite recipes for “The Amelia Island Table: Celebrating Community with Stories & Recipes.” This new cookbook will be published by Story & Song Bookstore Bistro in partnership with the not-for-profit Barnabas Center.

Since its opening in 2018, Story & Song has expanded far beyond its original book-selling, music, and bistro roots. In addition to books for all ages, gift items and delicious food, it offers a spacious gallery for local artists, a stage for performers, and a publishing arm for local authors. So far, Story & Song has published its own book on Amelia Island attractions and helped publish books on American Beach, sharks, baseball, Amelia Island dogs, and a glossy book of local photographs. “This cookbook represents a new level of engagement with the community and we’re very excited to have Barnabas as a partner,” says Donna Kaufman, Story & Song co-founder.

Barnabas is the only not-for-profit, comprehensive service center in Nassau County. It has been helping individuals and families with housing, medical and nutritional needs for almost 40 years. Last year, 644,140 pounds of healthy food was provided to 35,339 food-insecure people. More than 9,854 children were served, and the need keeps growing. A portion of the proceeds from sales of this book will support these vital community services.

Community needs, plus the success of Story & Song’s bistro, sparked the idea for a cookbook. The bistro serves imaginative and healthy meals and snacks daily until 2 p.m. The staff also caters meetings, special events, concerts, and parties in the art gallery upstairs and outside in the courtyard. With good food, ideas and fellowship all available in one place, people naturally come together. At Story & Song, patrons are as likely to be found lingering over lunch as browsing in the bookshelves.

“The Amelia Island Table” will include local foods and dishes that Nassau County cooks most enjoy at home and sharing with others, Kaufman says. Recipes should be original, proven, and use ingredients easily found locally. Whether it’s a family favorite passed down through generations, a creative twist on a classic, or your own creation that never fails to impress, your recipe will be considered along with the story behind it.

Chapters will focus on breakfast and brunch, breads and biscuits, fruits, salads, shrimp (local of course), main courses, desserts, and entertaining. Story & Song and Barnabas will provide some recipes and share tips on scaling up for crowds, and scaling down, perhaps for someone who needs TLC. The Fernandina Beach Photography Club will assist with photos.

Submitting a recipe is easy. Include a list of ingredients, preparation instructions, your story, and if desired, suggestions for variations, wine pairings, serving and storing. For an application and more information, visit this page on Story & Song’s website. The deadline is Friday, May 31, 2024.