Delia Owens’ debut novel Where the Crawdads Sing rocketed to success last year after Reese Witherspoon chose it as a book club pick for Hello Sunshine. We loved the book so much that we knew we needed to host a book club for Where the Crawdads Sing in our IRL book club…months before Reese chose it for hers. See that mom, I’m a trendsetter ;).
Jackie and I have been pimping this book out hard to anyone that will listen. Recently, we decided to get together with a mutual friend who is not yet in the book club, to rehash what we loved about this novel and hear her perspective on the book.
We decided to theme up the gathering with a menu inspired by the book! When we threw it all together at the last minute, we realized how much depth the food added to the discussion, so we decided to share our menu and questions with you. We hope you find it helpful should you choose to host a book club for Where the Crawdads Sing.
*This post may contain affiliate links. We get a small commission if you purchase an item from an affiliate.*
I will admit when I saw the description of this book, I was not sold. A trusted individual, who has never steered me wrong in the past, gave me an advanced copy so, I took the leap. And wow, am I glad I did.
I read this book and then recommended it to everyone I knew. This book has that spark, that special something that makes it extra. It is no surprise that we chose this as our favorite of 2018.
This book is about Kya, The Marsh Girl who is left to fend for herself at a young age. With the help of two beloved friends, she is able to learn to care for herself but not without experiencing cruelty and violence. Then, she finds herself faced with murder charges. I will not give too much away but this is a must-read.
The Menu: Book Club for Where the Crawdads Sing
First, we set the mood for our mini-book club with food! Food is an essential part of the book club for Where the Crawdads Sing. The book takes place in the marshlands of North Carolina, so it’s only appropriate that our menu is inspired by Carolina cuisine!
All of the food items were super fast to make (or buy!) and could easily be divided up for a pot luck style book club evening. We can’t say the meal is the most nutritious, but it is WELL worth the calories!
The main food here is Fried Chicken. There are tons of online recipes for fried chicken, but I made it easy for myself and purchased it at our local Giant (our area’s main grocery store.) It was something like $6 for 8 pieces and it was worth every penny.
The skin was crunchy, the bird was moist, and I didn’t have to worry about burning anything during frying. If you don’t have a grocery store nearby that makes it, there is always KFC!
Jackie made the Mac and Cheese from an adaptation of The Chunky Chef’s recipe. She added some Worchester sauce and mustard powder. After initially asking if she could just get Stouffers, she ended up LOVING this recipe. It was the hit of the night for sure.
With all those carbs, we wanted to add in some greens. I did a simple brussels sprouts recipe that I use all the time. Simply halve a pound of brussels sprouts, toss them with olive oil, salt, and pepper and roast them for 30-40 minutes at 400 degrees. Crispy and delicious!
Biscuits are a must-serve with any Carolina cuisine, but once again we took a short cut and used Pillsbury!
Rounding off our main meal, we decided on baked sweet potatoes. There was a serious debate between Jackie and me on how to cook these bad boys. I prefer them to cook in the oven for an hour or so. Jackie swears by the potato setting on the microwave. Do you have a preference?
When dessert came around, we had a peach cobbler that knocked everyone’s socks off! We used Trisha Yearwood’s cobbler recipe, which can be made all year long because it uses canned peaches!
With a little vanilla ice cream, this warm dessert hit the spot. We ate ALL of it!
Discussion: Book Club for Where the Crawdads Sing
When it comes time to start the discussion for a book club for Where the Crawdads Sing, Putnam publishing actually makes it really easy with their book club kit.
It includes an interview with author Delia Owens and some additional Crawdads-inspired recipes. We had a lot to say about Kya’s mom. And the poetry twist — did any of you see that coming?