Pops and I left Chicago very early this morning. We traveled down through Illinois and across Kentucky to make a pickup.
I love the food in the south. I couldn't decide on one recipe so I have included several.
Country Grits with Sausage and Cheese
2 pounds mild bulk pork sausage
4 cups water
1¼ cups uncooked quick-cooking grits
4 cups (16 ounces) shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
1 cup milk
½ teaspoon dried thyme
⅛ teaspoon garlic powder
4 eggs, lightly beaten
Cook sausage in a large skillet, stirring to crumble, until browned. Drain excess fat and set aside. Pour water into large saucepan and bring to a boil. Stir in grits, return to boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat. Add cheese, milk, thyme and garlic, stirring, until cheese is melted. Add sausage and eggs. Spread mixture in lightly-greased 13x9x2-inch baking dish. Sprinkle with paprika. Bake at 350° for 1 hour or until golden brown. Let sit 15 minutes before serving.
Country Fried Steak
½ cup flour
½ teaspoon salt
¾ teaspoon pepper
½ teaspoons paprika
½ pound boneless round steak, about ¾" thick, trimmed of excess fat
3 tablespoons bacon or ham fat
1½ cups milk
Salt and pepper
Mix flour, salt, pepper, and paprika in small bowl. Set aside 3 tablespoons of this mixture for gravy. Rub half the remaining seasoned flour into one side of steak. Place steak between two sheets of waxed paper and pound with flat side of meat mallet. Turn steak over, rub in the remaining half of the flour mixture, and repeat pounding process. Cut meat into serving pieces.
Heat fat over high heat in large heavy skillet. Brown meat about 2 minutes on each side over high heat. Lower heat, cover, and simmer meat for 45 minutes, until very tender, turning halfway through cooking time. Remove meat from skillet and cover with aluminum foil to keep warm.
Stir reserved flour mix into pan drippings. As soon as flour begins to brown, slowly add milk, stirring constantly. Cook over medium heat and stir until gravy is smooth and thickened. Add salt, pepper, and cayenne to taste. Pour over steaks and serve.
2 eggs, beaten
1 cup sugar
2 Tablespoons butter, softened
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 Tablespoons all purpose flour
1 cup buttermilk
dash of ground nutmeg
1 9 inch) pie shell, unbaked
Preheat oven to 400°. Beat eggs and sugar together. Add the butter, salt, vanilla, flour, and buttermilk and mix well. Pour into the pie shell and sprinkle with nutmeg. Bake for 10 minutes, then reduce the heat to 350° and bake for 30 more minutes or until firm.
Southern Sweet Potato Pie
4 tablespoons (½ stick) butter
½ teaspoon salt
¾ cup sugar
3 egg yolks
Juice of 1 lemon (about 3 tablespoons)
2 teaspoons grated lemon rind
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
¼ teaspoon ground allspice
2 cups mashed sweet potatoes
1 cup whole milk, scalded
3 egg whites, stiffly beaten
1 (9-inch) pie shell, unbaked
Heat the oven to 425°.
Blend butter, salt, and sugar. Add the egg yolks, lemon juice and rind, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, sweet potatoes, and hot milk. Fold in egg whites. Pour the mixture into the pie shell and bake for 10 minutes. Reduce heat to 350° and continue baking for 30 to 40 minutes until firm in the center. Cool whip is optional.
Coffee Pecan Glazed Ham
7 pound fully cooked smoked ham
½ cup light brown sugar, packed
¼ cup crushed pecans
¼ cup maple syrup
2 Tablespoons cider vinegar
1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 Tablespoon instant coffee granules
1 cup water
1 Tablespoon dry mustard
Preheat oven to 325°. Cut the rind off the ham to expose the fat and place on a rack in a shallow roasting pan. Cover loosely with foil and bake 1 hour and 15 minutes.
Mix the glaze until the coffee granules dissolve and brush the glaze onto the ham. Bake uncovered 40 to 50 minutes brushing every 15 minutes with the glaze mixture. The ham is done when meat thermometer reads 140° in the thickest part of the ham.
Let the ham rest 15 minutes before slicing.