The Recipes

Would we even be Southern without our food traditions?

Chicken and Okra gumbo cooking in the pot

A Tale of Two Gumbos

A gumbo with no roux — that’s crazy talk, right? Who ever heard of such a thing? A gumbo with no roux… I’m pretty set … Continue reading A Tale of Two Gumbos

carton of chicken livers


Chicken livers. Tragedy* loves chicken livers. Specifically fried chicken livers.  Being the good wife that I am, I decided that if he wanted them, he … Continue reading Lilylivered

Divinity is the Devil

Karo Syrup. Go on. Say it with me. Kaaaaay-rooooow suuuuur-up. Drag it out. It sounds better that way. Why are we talking about Karo Syrup? … Continue reading Divinity is the Devil

The Best Thing About the Holidays

Late afternoon cocktails. That’s one of the best things about the holidays. Well, aside from the birth of Jesus, watching the children’s eyes light up … Continue reading The Best Thing About the Holidays

This is a very good pie.

Your Christmas may smell like pine boughs, or cinnamon, or chocolate, but mine smells like coconut. And liquor. But that was another post. Let’s stick … Continue reading This is a very good pie.

Sister Audnitha’s Filé Gumbo

(Just a quick note before we get into today’s post: We’ve come to the end of the See Jane Write #bloglikecrazy challenge. Thirty recipes, in … Continue reading Sister Audnitha’s Filé Gumbo

Ambrosia: Food of the Gods

Ambrosia — food of the gods. And food of the Southerner, especially around Christmas. It’s so good you’ll think the deities bore it down straight … Continue reading Ambrosia: Food of the Gods

How to Put the Scald on a Bird

It was Christmas day in the early double aughts, and it was just Sonny, Brother, and me. We’d thought for a few weeks about all … Continue reading How to Put the Scald on a Bird


Picture in your mind a round disc of sugar and butter with pecans in it. Do you call it a PRAH-leen or a PRAY-leen? Only … Continue reading Pralines

How to Eat Crow

Crow is a tough bird. Crow can sometimes be hard to swallow and it can certainly be embarrassing to eat crow, but there are times … Continue reading How to Eat Crow

Lemon Jelly Cake

One of my favorite cakes is a Lemon Jelly Cake — yellow cake layers with lemon filling in between them and on top. No fussy, … Continue reading Lemon Jelly Cake

Cheesy Fiesta Noodles

Sometimes I play “eat the pantry.” Every so often I wind up with a pantry full of canned goods and dry goods because I love … Continue reading Cheesy Fiesta Noodles

Leftovers: The Best Part of Thanksgiving

You’ve planned and shopped for weeks to get ready for Thanksgiving. You’ve cooked for two days, maybe even three. You’ve polished Granny’s Grand Baroque silver, … Continue reading Leftovers: The Best Part of Thanksgiving

Pecan Pie

We are a house divided. And it doesn’t have anything to do with football. It does have everything to do with a nut. That’s right. … Continue reading Pecan Pie

Sweet Potato Pie

The influence of African-Americans on Southern food cannot be ignored. From greens to okra to ham hocks and more, many of my favorite dishes originated … Continue reading Sweet Potato Pie

Dressing vs. Stuffing

It’s time we had a little talk about the semantics of “dressing” versus “stuffing.” Where I come from, south Alabama, we are die-hard dressing people. … Continue reading Dressing vs. Stuffing

Ada’s Rice Dressing

In the mid 1890s, my great grandfather, Andrew Joseph Rowell, Jr., was a young man in need of gainful employ. He had heard that there … Continue reading Ada’s Rice Dressing

Talkin’ Turkey

I can take a hint. That’s why when Daddy mailed me the recipe for his foolproof Thanksgiving turkey, I figured the baton had been passed … Continue reading Talkin’ Turkey

Cacklefruit all the ways

If you can cook eggs, you’ll never starve. Cackle fruit is as versatile as the day is long, not to mention cheap and cheerful. Here … Continue reading Cacklefruit all the ways

Sweet and Spicy, it’s Pepper Jelly

Sweet and spicy are two flavors that go hand-in-hand. And way before Sriracha, which lists sugar as it’s second ingredient, took over as the condiment … Continue reading Sweet and Spicy, it’s Pepper Jelly

Chicken and Dumplings

Granny died fifteen years ago this past March. She was just a few weeks shy of her 99th birthday. Brother and I thought that she’d … Continue reading Chicken and Dumplings

Seven-minute Frosting

I recently wrote about my Great Aunt Lois and how, along with making a mean hush puppy, she was a master at Seven-minute Frosting. For … Continue reading Seven-minute Frosting

Homemade Butter Mints

Butter mints are a staple at Southern showers, teas, and receptions. Sweetly pastel, they sit proudly between the mixed nuts and petit fours on our … Continue reading Homemade Butter Mints

Crabmeat Casserole

Crabmeat. It’s my absolute favorite seafood. More than oysters, more than shrimp, I love me some crabmeat. Not crab legs, mind you. Blue crab. I’d … Continue reading Crabmeat Casserole

Aspic, Southern Style

Aspic. What in the cat hair is it? The dictionary defines it as “a savoury jelly based on meat or fish stock, used as a … Continue reading Aspic, Southern Style

The Dookie Cake

Dump Cake. That’s the official, albeit unflattering, name of one of my favorite recipes. It’s not as bad, however, as what Brother calls it — … Continue reading The Dookie Cake

Watermelon Rind Pickles

Fannie Merritt Farmer (1857-1915) was a pioneer in food science, nutrition, and uniform measurement in cooking. She was principal of the Boston Cooking School and … Continue reading Watermelon Rind Pickles

Relish the Relish Tray

No holiday meal on Granny’s table was complete without a relish tray. Picture a divided crystal dish full of bite-sized, savory treats that compliment the … Continue reading Relish the Relish Tray

Skillet Cornbread – or – How Not to Get Your Southerner Card Revoked

“The North thinks it knows how to make cornbread, but this is a gross superstition. Perhaps no bread in the world is quite as good … Continue reading Skillet Cornbread – or – How Not to Get Your Southerner Card Revoked

Squash Relish — The Pinto Bean’s Spicy Mate

Everyone knows that opposites attract. That’s why Squash Relish is the perfect complement to Pinto Beans. Serve it right along side the beans so you … Continue reading Squash Relish — The Pinto Bean’s Spicy Mate

Pinto Beans Just Like Mama Used to Make

Being from South Alabama, I never realized that pinto beans were a thing, something to be sought out, a comfort food. We just never ate … Continue reading Pinto Beans Just Like Mama Used to Make

Red Beans and Rice — A Comfort to Your Soul

Beans beans, good for the heart! The more you eat, the more you … like ‘em! You know I just couldn’t resist! Seriously, red beans … Continue reading Red Beans and Rice — A Comfort to Your Soul

Mama’s Oyster Stew

I grew up near the Gulf Coast of Alabama, so naturally we ate a lot of fish and seafood. Shrimp, crab, and oysters were always … Continue reading Mama’s Oyster Stew

Aunt Lois’ Hushpuppies

After I graduated from college, I went back to Citronelle for a while and worked with my Great Aunt Lois on her farm. We did … Continue reading Aunt Lois’ Hushpuppies

Granny Mac’s Cold Oven Pound Cake

It’s November, and that means it’s time to blog like crazy — 30 posts in 30 days. This year, I’m going to write about something … Continue reading Granny Mac’s Cold Oven Pound Cake

Pam’s Apple Cake with Praline Glaze

There is a certain type of Southern cook who is the envy of us all. You know her. She is the queen of the covered … Continue reading Pam’s Apple Cake with Praline Glaze

Creamed things on toast

With Thanksgiving looming before us, it’s time we had a little cooking lesson. I am going to share with you the the first thing Mama … Continue reading Creamed things on toast

Sweet Potato Cobbler and a Lesson in Love

If it’s true that the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach, then my husband’s heart belongs to another woman. Since we’ve been … Continue reading Sweet Potato Cobbler and a Lesson in Love

It’s that time of year – the time for gingerbread

I’ve got gingerbread on the mind. It’s just that time of year. The time of year when fall’s chilly winds begin to blow and the … Continue reading It’s that time of year – the time for gingerbread

Pickled Figs

Pickles. Dill. Sweet. Bread and Butter. Refrigerator. Southerners love them all. From the fanciest market to the most humble filling station, you have to try … Continue reading Pickled Figs

Merry and Bright

Every year, as December approached, my grandmother and her friends would start sharing large jars of friendship cake starter amongst each other. After all, what … Continue reading Merry and Bright

Oh, fudge!

My Granny was not a good cook. There, I’ve said it. She just wasn’t. Granny had many talents, but they were all put into practice … Continue reading Oh, fudge!