Boston Uncommon Named New England Regional Winner in the 18th Annual Tabasco Community Cookbook Award. (3/4/08)

Kris Ann Brady – Hunter Public Relations
4 March 2008


On March 4, 2008 the McIlhenny Company awarded the New England Regional Tabasco Community Cookbook Award to the Junior League of Boston for their cookbook, Boston uncommon. SEE FULL PRESS RELEASE BELOW. The Tabasco award was established in 1989 to recognize a uniquely American book form – the community cookbook – and the dedicated volunteers who use it so effectively to benefit charitable causes. Cookbooks published in 2006 and 2007 for fund-raising purposes by non-profit organizations were eligible to enter the competition.


The McIlhenny Company received applications from organizations around the country. Entries were judged on layout and design, title, theme, storyline, incorporation of regional culinary traditions, recipe content, and the organization’s fund-raising efforts. Boston uncommon celebrates the food and traditions that are uniquely Boston while taking a culinary journey through the city’s historic neighborhoods. The proceeds of the sale of the cookbook support the mission of the Junior League of Boston.


As a regional winner, the Junior League of Boston received a $500 cash award, and was presented with a plaque and award stickers to be displayed on the cookbook’s cover. The League is honored to receive this award and to be recognized along with the other winning organizations.





Digital images of winning cookbooks available upon request.



Kris Ann Brady –

Mike Surabian –

(212) 679 – 6600



National Winners, Additional Regional Winners and Hall of Fame Also Announced

2008 Entry Period Now Open Through September 26th

AVERY ISLAND, La., March 4, 2008 – The Bells Are Ringing: A Call To Table, a cookbook published by the Mission San Juan Capistrano Women’s Guild in San Juan Capistrano, California, is the national first place winner of the 18th annual Tabasco Community Cookbook Awards, announced Paul McIlhenny, president and CEO of McIlhenny Company. This unique book invites readers to take a journey with the Mission through vignettes of its history and one-of-a-kind recipes that are truly reminiscent of California culinary trends. One can feast on the vivid stories of the past while preparing meals and being transported to a time when the pace was slower, food was savored and meals were part of tradition. An array of regional dishes is represented, from Artichoke Chicken Capistrano and Fruit Kuchen to Jalapeño and Pineapple Coleslaw and Alsatian Cheese Tarts. The many wonderful recipes are intermingled with beautiful illustrations and vivid photographs as well as a special section devoted to entertaining. Sales of The Bells Are Ringing: A Call To Table benefit historic Mission San Juan Capistrano to aid in their preservation of their Historic Museum.

The second place winner, Mardi Gras to Mistletoe, comes from the Junior League of Shreveport-Bossier in Louisiana. This cookbook of festive favorites has a strong sense of community and pays tribute to the traditions and festivals celebrated by the people of Northwest Louisiana. Each chapter is dedicated to a month in the year and begins with a brief narrative detailing the history, traditions and festivals celebrated in this region and nationwide. Cajun Strata and Mardi Gras King Cake for February or Mustard-Roasted Salmon with Cranberry Sauce and Cornbread Casserole for December highlight local culinary traditions. Photographs throughout the book capture not only the dishes, but shots of scenic Shreveport-Bossier and celebrated homes as well. Mardi Gras to Mistletoe invites readers to experience the deep roots of Northwest Louisiana – a journey that all are sure to find captivating.  Proceeds from the sale of this book go directly to the Junior League of Shreveport-Bossier, Inc. to support various community projects and non-profit organizations in the area.

Plantations Tours & Tastes by the Church Women of Prince George Winyah Parish in South Carolina is the third place national winner. This book celebrates the 60th anniversary of plantation tours by offering cooking tips and recipes with regional flair­ – highlighting Georgetown history and Low country cooking at its best. The book’s strong sense of regional pride is shared through the beautiful illustrations and descriptions of landmarks, alongside traditional regional recipes; and readers will be able to imagine that they are in South Carolina. The Parish’s strong sense of spirituality accents the book, proceeds from which go towards the upkeep and restoration of the historic Prince George Winyah Church that has been in existence since 1721.

“McIlhenny Company is honored to play a role in celebrating the hard work of these organizations, each of which help capture culinary traditions and make significant contributions to local charitable causes,” said McIlhenny. “The true meaning of community is defined within each of these unique cookbooks.”


Regional, Hall of Fame, and Special Merit Winners

This year, regional winners include a variety of books that exemplify the diversity of culinary history throughout the United States. The Mid-Atlantic regional winner, Taste: A Collection of Contemporary and Traditional Kosher Recipes, is produced by Yeshiva of Flatbush in Brooklyn, New York. A Signature Collection is the regional winner from the Midwest, created by New Albany Cooking with Friends in New Albany, Ohio. The New England regional winner is Boston Uncommon, composed by the Junior League of Boston in Massachusetts. Marshes To Mansions: Treasured Recipes of South Louisiana by Junior League of Lake Charles from Lake Charles, Louisiana represented the best in the South. The winner of the Southwest region is Tastes & Treasures: A Storytelling Cookbook of Historic Arizona by the Historical League, Inc. in Tempe, Arizona. The Boys & Girls Clubs of the North Valley in Chico, California produced the West winner, Paradise Chocolate Fest Cookbook. Additionally, Starfish: Café: Changing Lives One Recipe at a Time from the United Missions, Inc. in Savannah, Georgia receives a Special Merit Award.

The Ladies Philoptochos Society in Charleston, South Carolina earned their place in the Walter S. McIlhenny Hall of Fame by selling over 100,000 copies of their cookbook, Popular Greek Recipes.

Members of the judging panel were: Cathy Barber, food editor for the Dallas Morning News; Dale Curry, food editor for New Orleans Magazine; Meryle Evans, culinary historian; Ann Harvey, freelance food editor; Jan Turner Hazard, freelance food writer; Jan Longone, curator of American Culinary History; William Rice, freelance food writer; and Tommy Simmons, food editor for The Advocate in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.



2008 Entry Period Now Open Through September 26th


Cookbooks published for fund-raising purposes by non-profit organizations in 2007 and 2008 are eligible to enter the 19th annual Tabasco Community Cookbook Awards. Friday, September 26, 2008 is the deadline for submissions.

Winners will receive contributions to their charities in the following amounts: first place, $2,500; second place, $1,000; and third place, $750. Six regional awards may also be awarded and will each receive $500. All winners will also be presented with distinctive dinner plate plaques, personalized for their organizations, as well as awards stickers for their books.

Cookbooks that have sold more than 100,000 copies, regardless of when they were first published, are eligible for induction into the Walter S. McIlhenny Hall of Fame, which honors books considered classics in the field. To date, 62 books have been awarded this distinction. Hall of Fame honorees will also receive commemorative plate plaques and awards stickers.

Each organization entering a book should submit five copies along with a completed entry form and documentation of how the proceeds will benefit worthwhile community projects. Entries are judged on layout and design, title, theme, storyline, incorporation of regional culinary traditions, recipe content, and the organization’s fund-raising efforts. Official entry forms and awards rules are available at, or by sending a self-addressed stamped envelope to: Tabasco Community Cookbook Awards, c/o Hunter Public Relations, 41 Madison Avenue, 5th Floor, New York, N.Y. 10010.

McIlhenny Company established the Tabasco Community Cookbook Awards eighteen years ago to recognize the role these books play in chronicling and preserving local culinary traditions, which may have been around for generations.

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