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The Ranch Table Cookbook

By Elizabeth Poett

Recipes from a year of harvests, celebrations, and family dinners on a historic California ranch.

Elizabeth Poett was raised on Rancho San Julian, a 14,000-acre ranch on Santa Barbara’s Central Coast that her family has been working since 1837. Her years are structured around the land’s natural rhythms and annual events: celebrations big and small, harvests, and work days that bring her family and community together—and always end with large meals for everyone to share. Elizabeth feeds her friends and family with seasonal ingredients—including vegetables and meat grown and raised on the ranch and fish from California’s Central Coast—barbecuing tri-tips, turning local cod into tacos, and using heirloom tomatoes and summery eggplant into delicious, family friendly pastas.


Much like Elizabeth’s life,The Ranch Table is also organized around the work and celebrations that take place on the San Julian throughout the year, giving readers and cooks a chance to dive into the ranch’s most important workdays, family traditions big and small, and annual celebrations. Each chapter begins with a description of an event or a special day—the work of a branding, the joys of the annual family reunion, the fun of a fall cider press, the quiet beauty of a winter evening spent at the kitchen table—and invites you to join in on the day with both beautiful photos of the ranch today and archival images of its past. In each chapter, Elizabeth also shares the recipes for the dishes she makes for these occasions, including:

Spring, Branding Day

Pistachio Breakfast Bread

Onion-Braised Brisket Sliders

Fudgy Caramel Brownies 

Summer, Family Reunion

Great-Grandmother’s Beef Empanadas 

Blackberry Margaritas   

Fall, Cider Press Potluck

Turkey Barley Soup 

Spiced Honey Apple Pie with Ginger Crust  

Winter, New Year’s Eve Party and Bonfire

Chanterelles with Toast

Standing Rib Roast

Green Salad with Winter Fruit and Citrus Dressing with Candied Pecans


“The Ranch Table transports you to the Central Coast of California, where Elizabeth Poett is known for embracing the rhythm of the seasons with fresh, simple meals on her family’s historic ranch. Her stories and recipes are grounded in the generations that came before her, and you feel a sense of this rich heritage on every page. Elizabeth’s warm hospitality and down-to-earth approach to cooking are welcome reminders of what truly matters when we invite people around our table.” —Joanna Gaines

“Exquisite, inviting…The Ranch Table offers delicious home cooking wrapped up in a romantic view of one family's way of life.” —Shelf Awareness