EXCLUSIVE: Country Star Kix Brooks to Release His First Cookbook: ‘It’s Not a Foodie, Exotic Chef Book’

03/15/2016 at 10:00 AM ET

Kix
Micah Kandros

Much of Kix Brooks‘ life has revolved around food.

“I’m not a chef but I do come from a world where half of the conversation of the day is either, ‘Do you know if the fish are biting at so and so?’ or ‘The oysters are in season, let’s go and get some fresh ones,'” the country singer tells PEOPLE. “It just sort of comes from the Louisiana culture and lifestyle.”

So it seems natural that Brooks, 60, would channel his passion into his debut cookbook Cookin’ It With Kix: The Art of Celebrating and The Fun of Outdoor Cooking, out Aug. 30.

RELATED: Rachael Ray, Mario Batali & More Star Chefs Make Dinner Using Only 5 Ingredients

“This book isn’t about boiling water, it is more in depth than that but it’s also not about something that’s the size of a pencil eraser and has 18 exotic flavors in it,” he says. “It’s not a foodie, exotic chef book by any means. It’s about tailgate, backyard, in your kitchen things you can do and you can do better and make a little more flavorful than maybe you were doing before.”

The Brooks & Dunn star called upon many people he’s met throughout his career to share over 100 recipes and tricks for the book. One of his favorites—a grilled salmon recipe shared exclusively with PEOPLE—comes from the “fishing guys” he spends every summer with in Alaska.

Kix

After catching fish along the river, Brooks says the men build a fire and make a “gorgeous, delicious lunch right there on the ground.” (But don’t worry, you can also whip this up on your backyard grill or in the oven.)

RELATED: Celebrity Wine Club: See Which Bottles the Stars Are Sipping and Sharing

“It just makes you smile to realize you can cook great food anywhere with a few key ingredients and a little methodology,” he says.

In the book, Brooks—who owns Tennessee’s Arrington Vineyards—also gets into pairing different wines with different foods. “I think that intimidates a lot of people and it shouldn’t be intimidating,” he says. “Having the right wines with your dinner certainly makes things a lot better and it’s just a fun thing to know how to do and is really not that complicated.”

So what would compliment his salmon recipe below? “A Sauvignon Blanc would be a nice, fresh acidic pairing there.”

Kix
Tambi Lane Photography

Kix Brooks’ Salmon-in-the-Fire 

Fresh salmon filets
Salt
Pepper
2 tsp. butter for each filet
1 tbsp. brown sugar for each filet

1. Build your fire! A campfire will do or a hot grill on the patio or you can also cook your fish in the oven.  If you’re cooking in the oven, set your temp at 425-450°.

2. Lay each filet skin side down on a big square of foil. Lightly salt and pepper each piece of fish. Pinch butter into pieces and lay it on top of the fish. Sprinkle plenty of brown sugar over each filet; basically cover the entire fish in a layer of sugar.  Wrap the foil loosely around each filet, forming a little foil packet, pinch foil together to tightly seal.  If you’re cooking outside with a real fire, double wrap in foil.  Place packets directly onto hot coals, but not directly in the flames.

3. Cook until fish is cooked. How long you say? Well, it depends, but it could take 15-20 minutes or if your fire is smokin’ hot, it might only take 8-10 minutes. If cooking in the oven, plan on it taking about 16-20 minutes.  Just check it along the way and when it’s firm and browned and smells good, it’s ready! Oh yeah! This is some good eatin’! Best ever campfire cuisine!

KIX TIP:  If you wanted to get fancy, you could add garlic, lemon, onions, Dijon mustard, mayonnaise, dill or whatever you have on hand to the packet or spread on the fish. But if all you have is sugar and butter, you will not be disappointed.

—Ana Calderone, @anacalderone

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The Latest Craze in Disco Styles Is See-Through Jeans—but Beware of Foggy Bottoms

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The Latest Craze in Disco Styles Is See-Through Jeans—but Beware of Foggy Bottoms

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On a clear day, you can see forever—or at least that’s the wicked thought behind L.A. designer Agi Berliner’s transparent idea: see-through jeans. Exhibitionists notwithstanding, most folks wear them over bathing suits or as attention-getting evening wear with halters, garter belts and body stockings. Created for the disco crowd, the $34 jeans are selling like, well, hot pants. In just six weeks, 25,000 pairs have already been sold in such major department store chains as Macy’s, Bonwit’s and Saks.

“What’s limiting American designers is that we’re afraid to do something different,” says Berliner, 32, a Hungarian émigré who fled with her family to the U.S. in 1956. Agi thought up the gimmick in London while marveling at the way plastics were being employed by designers of punk fashion. In her L.A. office, where she designs for La Parisienne junior sportswear, Agi spent five days on the phone and six weeks testing to come up with the right plastic.

Agi herself tried out the French-cut jeans with the zipper in front, and quickly found several problems: Some plastics tore away from stitching, others wouldn’t bend and all fogged with perspiration. The ideal material proved to be a vinyl supplied by a bookbinder. The steam was eliminated with a series of vents behind the knees and in the crotch. “They’re no hotter than polyester pants,” claims Agi, “and if you wear them with tights, they won’t stick to your legs.”

Whatever the discomfort and despite the problem of Saturday night feverishness, discomaniacs report one major advantage of the plastic pants: no laundry bills. To keep Berliner’s see-through jeans clear, all the wearer needs is a little Windex.

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