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5 stars for Goes Well With Grits #travel #travelwriting #food #bookreview

Title: Goes Well With Grits: The Southern B&B Breakfast Experience

Author: Ellen Maxwell Cowan

Genre: B&B Travel Reference, Food Writing, Food and Drink

Book Blurb:

When a traveler books a room at a bed & breakfast, half the experience is lodging, and the other half is breakfast. In these pages, a seasoned innkeeper takes a philosophical and lighthearted look at the fine art of breakfast at a cozy Georgia B&B. Readers can share a virtual B&B breakfast experience and ponder the following interesting topics.

· Debate whether or not permaculture bacon (and sausage) really is better.

· Learn the shocking reason why Dr. John Kellogg invented corn flakes.

· Discover the human emotional attachment to chickens and their eggs.

· Contemplate the subject of pancakes versus waffles: the controversies, the contests, and why you shouldn’t throw them out or at somebody else.

· Consider alternative ways to make toast interestingly (as opposed to boringly).

· Get schooled in the only right way to cook grits—Georgia’s official prepared food.

· Find out how to make the best brandied figs courtesy of the crazy cat lady who lives across the tracks.

These subjects and many more are interwoven with stories about nature, the animals, the chickens, and the people who share their home with the world at The Firefly. You’re welcome to join them for breakfast.

Click our website at This book as well as others are a compilation based on blog posts over the last couple of years.

There is a transformation story here as well.

Our place is the temporary home of a wide assortment of characters, including action heroes, attendees at a hypnosis seminar, and several other walks of life.

My Review:

Lighthearted and informative, this book simply draws the reader into yearning to visit this B&B. An easy read that comes across as a travelogue and a regional culinary history. Some of the stories are enlightening and surprising. The recipes are fun and innovative. There is a simple coziness from reading this book. This style of writing conveys the warmth that comes from that little Georgian B&B.

Can't say I would recommend this book to hotel executives. I do recommend this book to anyone thinking of taking a trip to the Atlanta area specifically and Georgia generally.

The only caveat is that people do need to take extreme care with keto-based dietary choices. The health consequences of engaging in such a diet can be very dangerous.

The self-deprecating nature of the dialogue just makes the reader smile. Warm and inviting, this book is the ideal companion for this B&B. Each chapter is well laid out and readable. I personally loved the chapter on waffles. A great read for people who can't travel but wish to journey in their minds.

My Rating: 5 stars

Buy it Now:

Author Biography:

Ellen Maxwell Cowan is part of a team of busy innkeepers who manage a bed and breakfast located an hour away from Atlanta, Georgia. As the resident scribe for The Firefly at Madison, she chronicles its day-to-day activities. The property, guests, staff, animals, and food are all woven into her ongoing story of the bed and breakfast experience. Aside from writing, she teaches art classes and is a portrait painter in the Madison area.

After getting her bachelor’s degree in literature from Wheaton College, she found a sturdy backpack, bought a one-way plane ticket, and spent four years wandering through Europe and Africa. While there, she developed a first-hand appreciation for the link between food and culture.

She is a fan of sustainable agriculture, natural medicine, buying and eating local food, and human-scale living. All of these preferences suit her small-town lifestyle. She loves chickens and animals but loves to travel most of all, especially to sunny, sandy destinations. Her motto is, “Live every day of your life.” With the help of online sources, she is currently researching her immigrant ancestors for a possible historical novel. Other writing projects currently in the works include a southern music road trip journal, a field guide to little southern towns, and a manual for prospective B&B owners about the bed and breakfast life.

Social Media Links:

Instagram @fireflyatmadison @thefireflymadison

Reviewed by: Mr. N

1 Comment

Barbara Bettis
Oct 29, 2021

This sounds like a delightful idea and book. I'd love to check out some Southern B&B's.

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