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.