Sunday, August 3, 2008

The Lady Wasn't There

In case you were wondering where I've been.... Yes, I've been on the annual family vacation in Hilton Head, South Carolina. With all of my in-laws. In one house. Yep. That's 11 children, and 10 adults. Before you break into a cold sweat. It's a very lovely, very BIG house. And the children are all great kids. It's a nice chance every year for the Brain to spend time with his brothers and sisters and their spouses and for everyone to take a little time out of otherwise very busy lives. But we're back now. And it was back to frying donuts this morning.

Besides being relaxing, there were some exciting points to the trip too. We got to stop in Columbia, South Carolina and spend some time with the Brain's aunt and uncle who are really great people. We stopped by on the way back because we had such a good time on the way down. We also got to meet two of the Brain's cousins and their families, that I've never met before. It really was a fun time. We also got to spend a week with my newest little nephew. He's such a cutie!
The other exciting thing the Brain and I did was to spend the day in Savannah. We took a "trolley" bus tour which was hugely informative and a lot of fun. We saw beautiful old houses and landmarks like the home of Juliet Gordon Lowe (founder of the Girl Scouts). And we went to see Savannah's great lady. You know who I'm talking about. I'm talking about Paula Deen. The woman who I watch and drool over. The woman who's cookbook I so desperately want to buy, but I don't because I would be hippo sized if I ate food like that. Her food is for naturally bone thin people who have a light speed metabolism, and my metabolism is more like molasses in January. I may never cook her food, but I figured just once I could go eat at her restaurant.

Oh Lordy it was good. It was SPECTACULAR. I had these lovely fried green tomatoes. Yes, the food of the South. It was an appetizer. The Brain had ordered the buffet and went to wait in line behind about 100 people and I really had to restrain myself when these deliciously tart tomatoes arrived. I had to sit on my hands after tasting the spicy red pepper sauce and Vidalia Onion relish. Otherwise, by the time the Brain finally returned from the buffet, there would be none left. I did manage to be fairly dainty and not lick the plate when I finished.

I also have to say Paula makes it glaringly obvious that I can't make a biscuit. Well, I make biscuits like a Yankee of German/Irish descent. Hard little white lumps. Paula's biscuits were crispy almost on the outside and yet so fluffy and steaming on the inside. Unbelievable. I wonder how many sticks of butter there were in there.

For lunch I indulged in the pulled pork sandwich. When I lived in Kansas, I would drive past a barbecue joint every single morning. You have no idea how enticing the smell of pork in the morning can be. When I moved to Kansas I had no real idea what barbecue even was. But after living in Kansas, I craved pulled pork. Just so you know there is no real pulled pork in Ann Arbor or Indianapolis. But there was in Savannah. Of course, I knew that South Carolina barbecue was different than Kansas City barbecue. Fortunately I discovered, thanks to Paula Deen, that I like them both. My pulled pork sandwich was so delicious that although I was way full, I ate it all. I licked my fingers. My pulled pork cravings have been satisfied for the next couple of months.

Paula and the boys weren't there, and I don't think I was the only person who was asking for her. After eating there, don't be surprised if I try to cook Southern food. But I'll probably try to do it without a stick of butter, some bread crumbs, and mayonnaise.


glamah16 said...

What a treat. Im like you. Give me a outing in the the restaurant, but dont get and cook from the books. She's dangerous.

Kitt said...

What fun!

Your nephew is indeed a cutie.

Sara said...

Awww! That really is an adorable kid!

Sometimes I wonder if Paula Deen has any clue how many calories are in butter... That lady's cookin for farm boys 'cause nobody else could eat like that on a regular basis. Super yummy once in a while, though.

Deborah said...

Yum! I'm so jealous! And yes - I'd love to buy one of her books too, but it would be quite dangerous. I usually even have to walk away when her show comes on tv!

Training Tim said...

It was great seeing you in Columbia.

BTW nothing in the world is as good as southern food. That's why the south is so fat!

Next time you come, I will create some of MY famous ribs, beer can chicken, or Alabam Style Chicken Sandwiches for you guys.

Aunt LoLo said...

Hi! You don't know me, but I got your addy from Daring Bakers. ANYWHOO...I just had to pipe in on the biscuits. We've got some family down south, and one of my Mom's aunties taught me how to make 'southern biscuits'.

Put a few cups of self-rising flour in a bowl (honestly, this is hard to find if you don't live in the South, but you can find recipes to make your own, online.) Work in a few spoonfuls of Crisco or other shortening, with your fingers. (You sort of pinch it through the dough until it looks like the dough is full of varying sizes of peas. You could also cut it in, if it makes you feel better.) Then, add enough buttermilk to make the whole thing into biscuit dough and bake until done. I'm sorry I can't be more specific, but it's really how she does it! The oven is probably "moderate" (or, about 350). Give it a shot!

Grace said...

mmm...fried green tomatoes and pulled pork are so dang good. good for paula, and good for you! making authentic southern food without the copious butter can definitely be done, and you should definitely do it! :)

The P & A Food Chronicles said...

so yeah... i hope to go there one day!!