Kitty Morse

Cookbook Author, Food and Travel Writer

Kitty Morse

Cookbook Author, Food and Travel Writer

Bitter Sweet Updates



First, an email scam warning

Please note if you “follow” me on Facebook (I very rarely post on Facebook.) My “messenger” account on Facebook (which I avoid), has been hacked. Before replying or clicking on REPLY to a message that comes from “KittyMorse”, check out the sender by clicking on the small arrow to the right of my name. If recipients click on the “http:” link, the sender will be able to hack into their computer. Check the sender’s address and DO NOT click on it if it doesn’t come from Kitty directly). I much prefer getting emails than messages.


A Gourmand World Cookbook Award for Bitter Sweet,c_limit,f_auto,q_auto:good,fl_progressive:steep/

Orange County Register review and audio version

Kitty is headed to San Francisco in February



I am giving a presentation at the Vista (CA) public library on Saturday, January 27th from 1 to 3PM.

At first, a librarian explained to me that the library no longer booked speakers because their attendance is too low… I would like to prove them wrong, that there is an audience in Vista and surrounding areas. Will you help me? Please let your circle of friends know, and maybe we can surprise the Vista librarians. 

Dear readers, you know by now that I trying to adapt to my new life after the death of my husband. Last year feels like a blur, but I did manage to accomplish important goals: Publish and market Bitter Sweet (may I repeat that it got an award in food history at the Gourmand World Cookbook fair in 2023 which validates our 3 years of work on the book, visit Alsace Lorraine, the land of my Alsatian ancestors, most of whom died in the Holocaust; meet new friends in Châlons-en-Champagne and Rosières-aux-Salines, two French towns my ancestors used to live in; give of presentations on zoom and in person, and most especially stay connected to friends.

It has been wonderful to reconnect with many readers in person. I love speaking to intimate groups, university classes, library events, and book clubs in and around Southern CA.

I thank those of you who have suggested book stores I can contact in your area. Please keep names coming, that is the best way for me to spread the word about Bitter Sweet.

Need an entertaining and informative speaker to give a presentation to your group? I am YOUR WOMAN! CALL or e-mail me! I am booking now for the summer and Fall.

Chers amis francophiles et francophones, merci de me lire. Et bonne année à tous.

Je serai ravie de répondre à vos questions sur mon dernier livre. Reproduit en version française par Le Petit Catalaunien illustré. Vente et Info: [email protected]

Bitter Sweet in the media:



Recipes: Make these dishes from Occupied France in World War II

Tuesday, January 16th 2024

Orange County Register

: Make these dishes from Occupied France in World War II – Orange County Register

Kitty Morse wrote ‘Bitter Sweet: A Wartime Journal and Heirloom Recipes from Occupied France’ based on the writings of her great-grandparents.


includes an audio version


Best in World  (2023) Gourmand World Cookbook Awards

page 234: Food History, 3rd place


Kitty in the media: Châlons-en-Champagne in the footsteps of my ancestors.

p. 124 Châlons


I love this bean soup from my first cookbook published in the US. I mentioned previously, that as soon as a few drops of rain fall around here (which is rare!) I turn into Pavlov’s dog and head to the kitchen to make soup.

In doing research for The California Farm Cookbook (Pelican 1994), I visited the Basque community of Bakersfield(CA) and obtained this recipe. This is one of my favorites to make in my crock pot (slow cooker).

Vegetarian Basque Lima Bean Soup

Yield:  8 to 10 servings

reproduced from The California Farm Cookbook by Kitty Morse (Pelican Publishing 1994)

            “A little over a century ago, Robert McAllister carried home to the coastal valley south of Santa Barbara a few beans he had acquired while visiting a Peruvian ship anchored offshore.  Little did he realize that his historic encounter would give birth to an entire industry, centered exclusively in California.  The origins of the large Lima bean, as the name implies, traces its origins to Lima, Peru.  The cultivation of the tasty Lima bean took off like a brush fire along the coastal valleys of Ventura County, and today, accounts for seventeen percent of the state’s dry bean crop. In California, Lima beans have long been part of the daily fare of Basque sheepherders, who savor this heartwarming soup while tending to their flocks during their seasonal migration to the High Sierras.  This full-flavored, meatless dish freezes well, but be sure to freeze beans and cooking liquid in separate containers.  To reheat, recombine the liquid and the beans.  For a quick version, substitute two large cans of Lima beans for the dried variety. ” 

1 lb. dry, large Lima beans

1/4 cup vegetable oil or margarine

1 cup diced  onion

1  1/2 cups diced celery

1/4 cup flour

Salt and pepper to taste

3 cups whole or low fat milk

One 15oz. can stewed tomatoes

One 15oz. can whole kernel corn, undrained

1 cup grated Monterey Jack cheese

A dash of Tabasco sauce (optional)

Chopped parsley,  for garnish

            Pre-cook beans according to quick soak method (see below.)  Do not drain, and set aside to cool. 

In large soup pot, heat oil or margarine, and cook the onions and celery, stirring occasionally.  Blend in flour, and salt and pepper to taste.  Add milk in steady stream, and stir.  Add beans in their cooking liquid, and bring to a simmer.  Add tomatoes and corn.  Cover, and let soup simmer for 45 to 50 minutes.  Just before serving, stir in Monterey Jack cheese, and adjust the seasonings.  Add hot sauce if desired, or serve it on the side.  Sprinkle with parsley, and serve. 

Note:  The California Dry Bean Advisory Board; recommends the following methods for soaking dry Lima beans, sometimes called butterbeans.

            Quick soak:  In a large saucepan, combine 8 cups hot water and 1 lb. California dry Limas.  Boil 2 minutes, remove from heat, cover, and set aside for one hour.  Do not drain if beans are for immediate use.Overnight soak:  In a large bowl, combine large Lima beans with 8 cups cold water.  Soak overnight, unrefrigerated.  The next day, drain beans and proceed with recipe using fresh water. When soaking dried beans, the beans.

Please visit other pages for more updates on Bitter Sweet including my next presentations in Feb 2024 and beyond.