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Sunday, September 18, 2011

Brunswick Stew

This is one of Papaw's recipes that I grew up eating. I had to improvise a bit from Papaw's version, and believe me, you will too. The "wild meat" it calls for was definitely wild when he cooked it. Maybe rabbit, squirrel, whatever one could probably made its way into this stew. Because this dish makes enough for a crowd, Papaw would cook it outside in a wash pot. And you'll never believe what he used to stir the pot: a drill with a coat hanger whisp! This is a lot of work, but it is the definition of comfort food to me, so worth the time and effort. I halved the recipe below, and it still made a ton!

1 fat hen
1 fryer
4 lbs. hamburger & wild meat (i used half beef and half pork)
2 lbs. chopped potatoes
2 cans tomato paste
1 qt. butterbeans (i used frozen baby lima beans)
1 can white shoepeg corn
1 lb. chopped onions
1 bottle Lea & Perrins worcestershire
salt, black and red pepper to taste

Papaw's instructions: Pressure cook hen in 3 cups water. Boil fryer until tender. Strain all stock and pour into large cooker. Add beef, wild meat and onions to stock. Cook potatoes separately. Add Lea & Perrins and tomato paste to meat. Shred the chicken and add to the pot. Blend up meat when all is added by using a drill with coat hanger whisp. Add beans and potatoes. Cook on low heat about 4 hours. Add shoe peg corn last.

Sally is scared to death of pressure cookers (one blew up on her once, and she'll never forget it - scaredy pants!); if you are too, here are her instructions:
Cook hen until tender. Boil fryer until tender. Strain all stock. Add ground ground beef, wild meat and onions to stock. Cook potatoes separately. Add worcestershire, tomato paste. Shred chicken and add to the pot. Blend up meat when all is added. Cook on low heat about 4 hours. Add beans, potatoes and corn last.

One side note: Don't use all of the stock leftover after the chicken is cooked. The point of this stew is to not have too much broth. It should be hearty.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Grits En Fuego

Ready for some fire in your mouth? Well, if you are out of 151, cook up these grits. I'll list the recipe I used below, but the fun in this dish is that you really don't have to follow a recipe. You can make it less spicy if you want, vegan if you prefer, or whatever your heart desires. I serve it with crumbled bacon and an egg over easy on top. The yolk makes this dish just heavenly!


1 T. olive oil (I used bacon grease cause I keep it real)

1 garlic clove, minced

1 onion, diced

1 3/4 cups vegetable broth (you can use chicken broth too)

1 cup quick-cooking grits

1 can hot Ro-tel tomatoes, not drained (if you can't handle heat, use mild)

1 cup shredded cheddar cheese (monterey jack would be fantastic too)

salt & pepper to taste

Heat olive oil over medium-high heat and saute garlic and oniion for about 1 minute. Reduce heat to medium. Add grits, broth and rotel, stirring frequently. As the mixture thickens, slowly add the cheese and cook for 10 minutes. If mixture gets too thick, add water or mlk.

Now here comes the fun: Top with whatever you like! Some ideas: corn, jalapeno pepper slices, bacon crumbles, or sour cream!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Betty's Breakfast Casserole

(i'm not gonna lie, this pic is yuck)

I spent Labor Day weekend celebrating my oldest and bestest friend in the whole wide world's upcoming wedding. A bachelorette party has many secrets, but one that I reveal is that on Sunday morning we were a lot of girls, we were hungry, and we were hungover. Volunteers were needed to cook a big breakfast, and I raised my hand. I knew Betty's casserole would be the perfect choice; plus, I could prepare it the night before when I was still halfway together. I doubled the recipe below to make 2 casseroles, and it wasn't even really necessary. 1 was plenty to fill a large crowd. Congrats to Mary Margaret and thank you to Betty!

6 slices white bread, crust removed
1 lb. ground pork sausage or ham (we used hot jimmy dean)
4 cups shredded cheddar cheese or monterey jack (i used less than this, and it was fine)
6 eggs
1 t. salt
1 t. dry mustard
2 cups half and half
1 4-0z can green chilies

Lightly butter each slice of bread. Place in a 9x13 casserole dish. Brown and drain sausage and sprinkle over bread. Add cheese. Beat eggs and add salt, mustard, and half and half. Beat eggs again and pour over mixture. Refrigerate at least overnight or freeze. Remove foil and bake 45 minutes at 350 or until bubbly and lightly browned.