On July 14 at 6:30 p.m., Chef Jeremy Ashby of Azur Restaurant and Patio will host Willis for a celebration of her latest work, showcasing the healthy and wholesome side of Southern fare. This memorable evening will feature five courses of dishes from Lighten Up Y’all, prepared by Willis and Ashby. Tickets are $55 per person; call (859) 296-1007 to book a reservation.   As a prelude to the Azur dinner, Virginia will be at Morris Book Shop (882 East High Street) for a book signing and wine reception on Monday, July 13 from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. For reservations, call (859) 276-0494.   According to Southern Living, “If you think Southern classics such as pimiento cheese and smothered chicken don’t fit into a sensible diet, Virginia Willis’ lightened-up versions will show you how they can. With Lighten Up, Y’all, Willis reminds us why she’s one of the most creative cooks in the South.”   Willis is a French-trained chef with Georgia roots. When doctors told her she needed to lighten up her diet, she wanted to do it without sacrificing any of the flavor that makes Southern food so appealing.   The result is Lighten Up, Y’all, a collection of easy-to-make recipes for all the Southern favorites.   Dishes like Bourbon Grilled Pork Chops with Peach Barbecue Sauce, Buttermilk Potato Gratin, and Big Rich Texas Sheet Cake prove that Southern food can be both delicious and healthy, while family favorites like Oven Fried Chicken on a Stick and Cream Cheese Brownies will keep everyone happy.   Willis is the author of the acclaimed cookbooks Bon Appétit, Y’all; Basic to Brilliant, Y’all; Grits; and Okra. Willis is a columnist for and was named one of “Seven Food Writers You Need to Know” by the Chicago Tribune. She lives in Atlanta, Georgia. 

Courtesy of KyForward

Posted on 2015-06-24 by