Saturday, May 7, 2011

Weekend Cooking: Southern Plate - Classic comfort food that makes everyone feel like family

Southern cooking is the definition of comfort food...fried chicken, macaroni and cheese, grits...yum!  Nobody knows this like Christy Jordan, who lives in Alabama with her family, and is a ninth generation Southerner.  In this cookbook, she shares with us the recipes and stories that have been handed down through her family and serves to honor their memories.

She breaks her cookbook down into seasons...Summer Days and Family Reunions, The Cooler Days of Fall, Christmas, Spring, and Family Favorites.  Just turning the pages makes your mouth water, with big beautiful pictures to feast your eyes upon!  Homemade banana pudding.  Blackberry cobbler.  Cornbread.  BANANA PECAN FRENCH TOAST?????  I think I just gained five pounds.

Which brings me to the only downfall of this treasure.  It ain't for the dieting folks (including me).  To enjoy most of the recipes, you must turn your back on calorie worries.  Still, for a holiday or special occasion, these concerns can be briefly ignored, right?

I turned my daughter loose in the book, and she tabbed everything she was interested in making.  In the interest of the junk in the trunk, we made two dishes.  Sour Cream Hash Brown Casserole and Lucy's Chocolate Pie (which we made for Easter).  Both were sinful and wonderful.

Sour Cream Hash Brown Casserole

Two pound package of frozen hash browns

16 ounce carton sour cream
10.75 ounce can cream of celery soup
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/3 cup margarine, melted
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1/2 cup Ritz cracker crumbs

Combine all ingredients except cracker crumbs.  Spoon into greased 9 by 13 inch casserole dish.  Sprinkle cracker crumbs on top.  Bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes.


Lucy's Chocolate Pie

1 cup sugar

1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 cup self-rising flour
2 egg yolks
2 cups milk
2 teaspoons butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
1 baked pie shell

Meringue:

3 egg whites

1/4 cup sugar

In a medium saucepan, combine the sugar, cocoa powder, and flour.  Mix well.  Beat in the egg yolks and add the milk.  Place over medium heat and cook until thickened, stirring constantly to prevent scorching.  Stir in the butter, vanilla, and salt.  Pour into the baked pie shell and top with meringue.

To make the meringue, whip the egg whites until foamy with an electric mixer on high speed.  Add the sugar.  Continue beating on high speed until soft peaks form.  Pour on top of the pie and spread to the edges to seal well.  Bake at 325 degrees for 15 minutes, or until the top is golden.  Allow to cool completely and refrigerate before serving if you like.

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13 comments:

Susan said...

There's nothing like good Southern cooking to cure what ails ya! Both those recipes are classics and I may have to try that pie. I haven't had a good chocolate one in a long time.

Beth F said...

Sounds like the ultimate comfort indeed.

JoAnn said...

If you gained 5 pounds leafing through the cookbook, this post is good for at least a couple! Sounds yummy ;-)

Anita said...

I was wondering how you lost weight on Southern cooking too!!
I'm from TX, and my momma is a southern cook...one of the best!!
I make a recipe for potatoes almost like this one, and they are so yummy!!
Thanks for sharing.

C.B. James said...

Sour Cream Hash Brown Caserole!!!!

Seriously!!!! I did not dare read any further after I read that. Oh, no. I'm going to be thinking about that all day.

I thought you were my friend.

;-)

Zibilee said...

I just made the Chicken Planks from this book the other day for dinner, and I have to admit that they were to die for! I also made the dipping sauce fort them, and my husband loved it so much he just about drank it! This is a really wonderful book, and I am so glad that I have it. I know that I am going to be making more from it very soon, and that hashbrown casserole sounds wonderful! Thanks for sharing this with us!

caite said...

I'll take the fried chicken and macaroni and cheese...you can have the grits.

I make a very similar hash brown casserole.
I use less sour cream, about 1/2, and leave out the margarine.
but...I saute an onion and a diced pepper up and add that..and sometimes I add cut up, pre-cooked sausage, Italian or breakfast, to make a complete meal.
It is our Christmas morning tradition...You can have it all ready ahead and just stick it in the oven..it is so good...I LOVE IT!

heidenkind said...

I love mac & cheese. Lately I've been baking the leftovers in muffin tins and it makes a cute snack.

Willa said...

This one sounds wonderful, I am always interested in finding good cooking books :-)

TheBookGirl said...

I'm glad I'm not due to have my cholestorol checked for months, so I could actually make and eat something out of this cookbook :)

The chocolate pie sounds incredible...

rhapsodyinbooks said...

This cookbook sounds like it would be dangerous for me to have around the house!

Carol @ There's Always Thyme to Cook said...

Those two recipes look amazing, I can just imagine the rest of the book! YUM! I'd definitely have to try that French Toast!

Melissa said...

This cook book sounds really good, but I had to laugh about this review being posted right after the 29 Days to Perfect Weight review.... :)