Sunday, January 01, 2006

i have a confession...

i put sugar in my cornbread today.

i know it doesn't sound like a big deal - but down here - in the deep south, that's grounds for expulsion. only yankees put sugar in their cornbread. i used half and half too - instead of buttermilk. i am so gone...

but OMG was it good.
this girl right here can cook some soul food - make no mistake.

so it's January 1. gotta have the black-eyed peas, cabbage and cornbread. not sure if this is a purely southern tradition or not. i know everyone here does it. you can't walk through a produce section the last week of December at any grocery store in these parts without tripping over a head of cabbage or a bag of black eyed peas ...

something about good luck, money and or health. since i need them all - and can't remember which is for what, we covered all the bases.

this morning before church, i throw some of the peas, chopped up ham, hickory smoke salt and a few green onions in the crock pot. set to High

wash and chop cabbage. put in steamer - dribble with bacon grease and hickory smoke salt ( a little redundant - but worth it). It's ready to turn on the minute we get home.

and when we got home, it smelt so good when we opened the doors... Mmmmm, Mmmmm...

so I pulled out my favorite cookbook Deep South Staples: How to Survive in a Southern Kitchen without a can of Cream of Mushroom Soup- by my favorite southern chef and writer,
Robert St. John. Lo and behold, there's a recipe for Yankee Cornbread. and it calls for sugar. I have always like my cornbread on the sweet side so I took a walk on the wild side and whipped out a beautiful pone of Yankee Cornbread. Should have taken a picture for Pixie.

so we ate and are now sitting back and waiting on the money, luck and good health...

and while I am on the subject of Robert S. John, my mom sent me his new book, My South. A People, A Place, A world of Its Own for Christmas. It's actually a compilation of southern poems and verse. i have read it twice, parts of it out loud just so i can hear the words spoken with a southern drawl - as they were meant to be...

i can't read this to you, but let me share one of my favorite pieces...

I'm talkin' about a southern girl - greatest natural wonder of the world.
She's the reason the seasons change.
Her twang, soft as spring rain, is used to sooth pain.
Her silky drawl gives her the ability to touch you even when she says "y'all"
She can be as fierce as a summer storm,
yet on a cold night, her apple-butter eyes can make you feel warm.
Because God had a handle on her life, her soul lights its own candle.
Full of sass, created her own class.
Her champagne smile can calm the wildest beast.
Her smooth caress can bring about the sweetest peace.
As she steps into a room with effortless grace,
her very presence radiates any place.
Men have fought to keep such an appealing treasure--
diamonds, pearls, gold, nothin' can match or measure.

-Collette Dean

and this southern girl just put Sugar in her cornbread...


Big Pissy said...

Oh, I love this post!!!! I could smell and taste the yummy southern foods you had today....ummmmm.

As for the poetry... I've never heard of this author, but I will most certainly check him out. Loved it!

I think the poetry reading canceled out the fact that you put sugar in the cornbread :)

t_cole said...

oh pissy, and it was so stink'n good. i amaze myself sometimes.
if you ever make it over to Hattiesburg, this chef/author has a restaurant/bar on Hardy Street - just west of USM's main campus. its worth the stop. And he's usually around and is so hospitable - i have gotten several signed copies of his books to give as gifts.

happy eat'n.

Bstermyster said...

So, I am from CA and New Years day didn't get a special meal, we would just eat sandwiches.

Today, I had Taco Bell. That is really sad. I would much rather have eaten what you had goin' on.

My mom, she uses sugar in hers and that is some FABULOUS stuff.

E said...

Mmmmmm... cornbread with BUTTER.
I still don't get the whole black-eyed peas thing though. Will I go into debt, have high blood pressure and break a mirror now?!

I had salmon, greenbeans and whole wheat buttermilk biscuits (no sugar but heavy on the buttermilk). What does that mean?!?

t_cole said...

hey E, prolly means that you will live longer than us nuts down here that put half and half and bacon grease in our food...

WILLIAM said...

I was scrolling through and saw some of your pictures. You should check out
They do a Stuff Portrait friday (eache week people take pictures of different things) and there are many cool links over there to other blogs. One is Mama Duck which I think she does Way Back Wednesdays which a re again pictures of, well, Way back.