My friend Amy just moved to Florida a few weeks ago, and before my visit she spent hours combing the web for the best local seafood joint. Amy stumbled upon the Garden & Gun Magazine Website. I had never heard of this magazine before, but I'm now thinking of subscribing. I'm not sure about the magazine's title, though I imagine that the publishers were just looking for something catchy to capture the imagination about the "old south". The beautiful photographs and well-written, entertaining articles make it easy to lose a few hours exploring. Of course, this also makes me want to jump in my car and drive down Mississippi's Highway 51 or seek out the 100 best southern restaurants.
One of the many reasons I love the Southeastern U.S. is the food. Why did I include this in the Garden & Gun post? Because I really wanted to post that fried chicken picture that you'll see as you scroll down. Here is a list of some of my favorite traditional southern food indulgences. Warning: Vegetarians look away! Honestly, I don't eat these foods regularly as they are not-so-healthy, and I don't usually eat very much meat. Some of these of these foods are only worth eating when prepared by someone who knows how to cook them, i.e. My Boy's family or in a good restaurant. My landlocked location also limits my access to good fresh seafood. That just makes these dishes even more of a treat when I do eat them! Yum:
Boiled Crawfish ("Pinch the tail, eat the head!")
Oyster or Shrimp Po-Boy
Low Country Boil (a medley of shrimp, sausage, corn on the cob, and red potatoes)
Smoked Mullet Dip (and you thought a mullet was just a bad haircut - it's also a fish!)
Fried or Blackened Catfish
The Hot-Brown Sandwich
Pulled Pork Barbecue with Memphis or Carolina sauce
Deviled Eggs (we serve these at every holiday meal)
Fried Green Tomatoes
Pinto Beans & Cornbread
Shrimp and Grits
Sweet Potato Casserole
Buttermilk Biscuits & Gravy
Slow-simmered Green Beans
Tomatoes (fresh from the vine)
Fresh Fried Pies
Old-Fashioned Chocolate Pie
Ok, now I'm hungry. Something tell me that oatmeal just isn't going to satisfy me this morning. What are your favorite foods of the region in which you live?
All images from Garden & Gun.