southern

Southern Deviled Eggs

deviled-eggs

In the South deviled eggs are on the table at any holiday gathering. It has been awhile since I had some these little babies and just last week I thought about them and wanted to make some myself. I think these are the only Southern recipe that my husband actually likes. They are so simple to make and anyone can make them even if you do not think you can cook all that well. Just make sure you boil your eggs perfectly like in the previous post that I wrote. You have to have a perfect boiled egg if you want to make these.

6 hard boiled eggs
3 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 teaspoon white vinegar
1/2 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon mustard
salt and pepper to taste
garnish with ground paprika and freshly grated Parmesan cheese

1. With a sharp knife carefully cut the eggs in half. Place the yolks aside and on a clean plate place the egg white halves. If they do not sit up straight carefully cut a straight line on the bottom.

2. In a mixing bowl add egg yolks, mayonnaise, vinegar, sugar, mustard, salt and pepper. Mix well with a fork!

3. Place a plastic bag inside of a cup opening up and folding over the cup. Carefully spoon the mixture inside and cut a hole in the bottom. Pipe the mixture into the egg whites. Sprinkle with paprika and a bit of the Parmesan cheese. Cover and place in refrigerator until ready to serve.

Yields: 12 deviled eggs

Apple Butter

apple-butter

A few weeks ago I read a book about a family that lived on an apple farm and needless to say after I finished it all I could think about it was all kinds of apple treats. So this past weekend I went and bought an assortment of apples so that I could get started. I made an apple cake the other day, which was finished pretty fast, but really the only thing I have had on my mind is apple butter. Apple Butter is a pretty traditional Southern treat that dates back to colonial days. Ladies spend all Fall making and canning for the upcoming year. I would love waking up in the mornings growing up to a plate of fresh hot buttermilk biscuits and a jar of my mommas apple butter.

In the South we always just eat apple butter with biscuits, but we also use it as stuffing inside little hand held apple pies as well. If you have never had the pleasure or trying apple butter it is thick and concentrated kind of like apple sauce yet with a more butter consistency. Back in the day apple butter was prepared in large copper kettles outside. Large paddles were used to stir the apples, and family members would take turns stirring.

I am always really proud of myself when I make something just like my momma used to. Most of you probably think I grew up cooking Southern food with my family, but the truth is that I never even cooked before I got married. So I actually learned how to cook Arabic food way before my own. I am still learning and getting to know how to cook proper Southern food.

2 green apples, peeled and cored
2 red apples, peeled and cored
1 tablespoon orange juice
1/4 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
1-1/3 cup apple juice

1. In a saucepan on medium heat orange juice and slice apples into pan. Add vanilla, cinnamon and allspice, stir. Add sugar and apple juice. Cover, reduce heat to low and allow to simmer for 20 minutes.

2. With a hand held mixer, blend apples in the pan to get a thick consistency. Serve!

Yields: 1-1/2 cups

Rabbit and Dumplings

rabbit-and-dumplings

It’s funny how we take so many things for granted not ever noticing how special or nice they may be. For me it’s simple things like my mommas home cooking, having my brother or pappaw bring home fresh meat like deer, squirrel and rabbit or sitting around a table with my entire family laughing and enjoying good food. Here in Saudi for this dish I had to buy my rabbit from Carrefour and they sure are not cheap, but one good thing is they are huge compared to the ones we have back home.

If you have never tried rabbit you are really missing out. The meat is so clean and pure white with no fat what so ever. Rabbit is very normal in Southern cooking and countries like Egypt and Italy also use the meat quite often in recipes. It’s nothing different from any other animal a person may eat and all regions have things they enjoy that may be odd to some one else.

I am a big Duck Dynasty fan and Miss Kay certainly has had me craving my mommas dumplings so I had to make a batch. If you do not have rabbit you can use squirrel like Miss Kay does, but that is surely impossible to get here. Her recipe is pretty basic just having the meat cooked in water with salt and pepper and some dumplings added. I make mine with a lot more flavor and they sure are good. When it comes to the dumplings everyone does theirs different. My mom just adds the dough into the pot with a spoon, Miss Kay makes hers into squares and I made mine in rounds. They all taste great!

1 large rabbit (cleaned and cut in half)
1 tablespoon butter
salt and pepper
8 cups chicken broth (or 8 cups water and 2 chicken bullion cubes)
2 carrots, sliced
1 medium onion
1 garlic clove
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 (12oz) can evaporated milk

dumplings:
4 cups all purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
5 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups of buttermilk (I used laban)
3 tablespoons butter

1. In a stock pot on medium heat add 1 tablespoon butter, rabbit and salt and pepper. Allow each side to cook for a few minutes. In a food processor add onion and garlic and pulse. Add into soup with chicken broth and carrots. Reduce to simmer, cover and allow to cook for one hour.

2. In a large bowl add flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Add butter mixing until mixture is course. Add a little of buttermilk at a time until you get a smooth dough like you’re making biscuits. On a floured surface roll the dough out and cut dumplings(I used a glass).

3. Remove the rabbit from the soup, sit aside. Add cream of mushroom and evaporated milk. Bring soup to a full boil, add dumplings, reduce to low, cover and allow to cook for 15 minutes. Turn off heat.

4. You can add the rabbit back into the pot in the two pieces or remove the meat from the bone and add back into pan. Allow to sit covered for 15 minutes, add salt and pepper to taste and serve.