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FL Heat

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Everything posted by FL Heat

  1. I think they tend to be thought of as a "rural" food. The first time I had them was on my Papaw's farm, with green tomatoes from their kitchen garden. My friends (I grew up in the Dallas area) were a little snooty about foods like fried green tomatoes, collard greens, and fried chicken. Those were considered "country food". It's completely possible to grow up someplace like Dallas, Houston, Memphis, Atlanta, or other good-sized cities and never encounter the rural South's culture and foods. As for just being popular further south, on a recent trip to rural Illinois, the family we visited looooved fried green tomatoes. Those are just my experiences Diana
  2. FL Heat

    Dinner! 2004

    Cold tabouli, cucumber, red onion, feta, & chickpea salad. With a cherry smoothie. Because it's been raining all day (while still being unseemingly warm) and is incredibly humid. Turning on the oven or stove is just. . .ugh. Diana
  3. Basilgirl, Slyaspie, Phaelon. . . THANK YOU! I found Halloumi at the import market today (while looking for a different cheese) and snapped it up, read the directions, and fried the stuff up. Wow. I will no longer settle for the cheese dripping over the edge of the pizza. And to stay on topic, I like it fried probably a little too long (past that pretty golden-brown phase) and I like it better without all the acoutrements Diana
  4. FL Heat

    Dinner! 2004

    Had a bachelor friend over for dinner (it seems we feed a lot of my boyfriend's single friends), so we had a cucumber/tomato/feta salad, tomatoes stuffed with goat cheese & capers, and a pork roast that sat in a white wine/lemon juice/fennel/oregano/garlic marinade. And Fudgesicles for dessert. Diana
  5. Seriously? Yummmmm. I'd eat that for breakfast. And second breakfast. My school district's chicken fried steak was something I adored. It wasn't that good, but the crust was always crunchy, the gravy was always poured on super thick, it was a little too salty. . .I'm sure it was mass-produced beef patties, already breaded, but something about them just makes my mouth water, even years later. I always bought lunch on CFS days, in junior high & high school. Diana
  6. I should have breakfast before I post so that I can complete a thought coherently. But that's another thread. The conversation usually goes something like this: Me, when faced with something odd: "I haven't had anything like this before, what's it called? Her, proudly smiling: "Goop D'Awful! Isn't it great?" Me: "You're always so original with your dishes, did this come from a recipe?" Her: "Yes! From '31 Terrible Dishes Your Friends Will Hate'!" Me: "Do you think I could get the recipe from you? I'd like to try this at home. And you always seem to find new things to make, that's what is so great about coming over here to eat." So I try not to say it's awful, but I do what I can to encourage her to make new stuff. When she does make something that's tolerable, I gush over it. So she does make asparagus every time we go over, it seems like, but her asparagus is pretty good. D
  7. We have a friend who loooooves to entertain, but she's an awful, awful cook. When something she's made is really bad, I'll often ask for the recipe (partly because I want to see what went so wrong, partly because I feel bad for the food and want to fix it). She's flattered and I don't have to eat a whole lot of it. Diana
  8. Burned cheese. Like the part that drips over the edge of the pizza and gets brown & crunchy? I love that. Diana
  9. My Papaw had a farm, and when we grandchildren visited, Mamaw always woke us at 5 (!) to eat breakfast with him (cookin' twice in the summer? Not when there's work to do!). We ALWAYS got up obligingly, though, because it was fresh biscuits, gravy, fresh tomatoes from the garden, bacon, scrambled eggs, and garlic & cheese grits (her specialty). Man o man. The bacon & eggs came from one of their neighbors, and the cheese was made by a widower down the way a bit. It's got me drooling now, thinking about how good all that was. And to this day, when I visit Mamaw, she'll cook very nearly that same breakfast on the day I have to leave. Rest Papaw's soul, though, she doesn't wake me at 5 for it anymore, thankfully. I've gotten her grits recipe and tried and tried, but they just don't taste as good. . .and when I tell her that, she admonishes me for trying too hard Diana
  10. A reason to finagle a night off from cooking and a trip to Roy's :) (I've been trying for a couple of weeks now) Thanks, and we'll look for your wines! The Food & Wine Festival is just before our season passes run out, so we might go as spectators, but wouldn't know until much closer to the event time. Thank you for the heads-up, though, it sounds interesting (I love the flower & garden event they have every year). Diana (St Pete, FL)
  11. FL Heat

    Dinner! 2004

    The friend who took the pictures hadn't photographed food before. . .and, well, she promised to do better next time. Couldn't hardly make out the plates on the table We had friends over, and we had a cheese tray to start: White Stilton w/ Apricots, Derby w/ Sage, Beemster w/ Mustard Seed, and Mozzarella w/ Prosciutto. There's a few non-adventurous souls, I try to keep things grounded and not too exotic for them. I put white nectarines and apricots with the cheese. Then a salad, mixed greens with walnuts, blue cheese, red onions, apples, and raspberries with a raspberry vinaigrette. Dinner was apple-walnut stuffed pork chops with an apple glaze and green beans with garlic & a hit of pear vinegar at the very end of cooking. And dessert was a raspberry mousse with whipped cream :) Nothing terribly exciting, but it's always fun to have people over and get them interested in new things and taste how good things CAN be when made from scratch and with love We're a young crowd, and some of our friends are just learning how to cook. Diana
  12. I'll echo the general sentiments. . .we've had lunch there several times, as it's a neat environment and visiting family members always think it's a cute novelty. I found it a bit overpriced, and the food was good, but. . .well, I've had better seafood, and not at places as nice as that. I'd certainly take other family there, for lunch or a snack, and I wouldn't tell anyone NOT to go there, but as others have mentioned, there's far better available in the WDW campus. Coral Reef has been jam-packed every time we try to get in (we have season passes, and like to hop over to Epcot for lunch & then walk around for a couple of hours), and we're usually only there in non-tourist season, so any place that's full of locals is probably pretty good. Have a great time, wherever you choose! Diana
  13. FL Heat

    Dinner! 2004

    In St Pete, Susan :) We get over to your side of the coast to visit the boyfriend's family in Melbourne sometimes. Tonight's dinner was ginger-glazed pork chops and snow peas with garlic. Had to be fast, someone wanted to ride his motorcycle Diana
  14. A little over a year ago, my boyfriend (now of 5 years) stopped to see my parents on a road trip with HIS father. They picked up my dad's smoker (mom & dad are now in an apartment building), cast iron & all, and loaded it into the back of his truck. Now, he'd never had brisket before and couldn't understand why I'd read about it, dream about it, and wistfully sigh when I tried it somewhere and it was awful. He came home with the New Braunfels smoker and called a friend to help unload it and set it on the deck next to his beloved grill. The NEXT DAY, I shunned all work and drove to the market to buy a brisket (and had to explain that no, I was not making corned beef and yes, I did indeed want the fat on it), lit a fire, and smoked the darn thing. (That meat market manager was so confounded, but I maintained my sweet demeanor and turned on the drawl, and he now says hi to us every time, asks how things are going and what we've put in the smoker recently.) I was in tears when I cut into it and it had a beautiful black crust, incredibly pink smoke ring, and juice just flowed out. I tasted it, then fed him a small piece and cried even harder as his eyes got wide and he shook his head in disbelief, making those (already previously noted) same noises he did in bed. "It's really, really good, honey. But do all Texans cry about meat, or is that a girl thing?" Second best moment would be when this same man stopped mid-meal at a restaurant a few months ago, looked at me, and said, "Your pizza is better than this." For someone aspiring to elevate her cooking skills, that moment was precious indeed. Diana
  15. FL Heat

    Dinner! 2004

    Have to start somewhere, right? Pecan-crusted chicken with a drizzle of honey, baked sweet potatoes topped with cinnamon & honey, and a salad of greens, couterier cheese, and pecans, with a honey-mustard vinagrette. And many thanks to everyone who's posted in this thread. As a long-time lurker, I got so many great ideas for menus & presentations. It's awfully satisfying to have friends say, "That's so pretty!" and then follow that with, "And SO good!" Diana
  16. I grew up in Texas, with relatives in Tennessee and Mississippi. . .Peach Nehi was my mom's favorite thing EVER, my dad was a HUGE RC Cola fan, and I would get rewarded with a Big Red when I was really good on car trips. Cokes weren't for everyday drinkin', that's what "warter", tea, and "maylk" were for. I still squeal with joy when I find Peach Nehi in gas station coolers on road trips. Papaw (in Tennessee) lived in a pretty rural area, and between him & his neighbors, there was always an ample supply of strawberry wine, blackberry wine, and moonshine in the cellar (next to the pickles and chowchow). I was too young to ever be able to taste it, but when people not from the South question the validity of "strawberry wine", I'm quick to defend it as a real beverage. And I distinctly remember Mamaw making egg nog every Christmas. . .with bourbon. I don't know if that's the "right" way, but the first time I was allowed to taste it. . .wowee. Blew the socks off a 13-year-old. Thank you all for the thread. . .recollections like the ones here are what led me to finally register and start posting Diana
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