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Sunday
Jul072013

USA Today: S.C. Shrimp & Grits Top Regional Food in U.S.

Born of necessity and convenience, shrimp and grits evolved from the simple breakfast fare favored by shrimpers along the South Carolina coast. This humble take on traditional shrimp and rice (rice was a cash crop in the South Carolina Lowcountry until after the Civil War) was altered in the late 1800s to substitute hominy, as ground-corn grits were called at the time, as the starch. In the 1990s, Chef Donald Barickman of Magnolia's restaurant in Charleston elevated the dish to the ranks of fine cuisine, and it quickly became synonymous with the city of Charleston.

This Lowcountry staple takes succulent white shrimp caught off the South Carolina coast and lays them atop creamy, often cheese-spiked, grits. There are as many iterations of shrimp and grits as there are chefs in the Carolinas; some are mild, while others raise the heat level with the likes of Creole-spiced tasso ham and jalapeño peppers.

Today, Charleston still reigns as the city for shrimp and grits. Hank's Seafood Restaurant on the corner of Hayne and Church streets, near the Old City Market, serves a wonderfully tasty and mild version made with smoked Andouille sausage, while James Beard Award-winner Chef Robert Stehling of Hominy Grill (outside the historic district on Rutledge Avenue) incorporates bacon, fresh mushrooms and hot sauce into his recipe.

At Slightly North of Broad on East Bay Street, acclaimed chef Frank Lee flavors his interpretation of shrimp and grits with tomatoes, shallots, garlic and basil, and -- dieters take note -- loads of butter and cream.

Are you a fan of shrimp and grits? Vote for it here, as your favorite iconic American food in the 10Best Readers' Choice Awards contest.

Monday
Jun242013

No-Churn Pomegranite Ice Cream

From Nigella Express

It's not hard to think of a pudding that can be made in advance. But mostly the advantage is simply that all the effort is upfront and early. The thing about this recipe is that you do it in advance - it's ice cream, so that stands to reason - but what you do in advance is negligible in terms of effort. You don't make a custard, and you don't have to keep whipping it out of the deep freeze to beat the crystals. No, you simply squeeze and stir.

On top of that cause for greater contentment, there is also the fact that this delicate pink ice cream tastes like fragrant, sherbety heaven.

 

Ingredients

  • 3   pomegranates
  • 1 lime
  • 1 ½ cups confectioners' sugar
  • 2 cups heavy cream
Sunday
Jun162013

Slow Roasted Lemon-Garlic Chicken

This is one of those recipes you just can't make once: that's to say, after the first time, you're hooked. It is gloriously easy: you just put everything in the roasting dish and leave it to cook in the oven, pervading the house, at any time of year, with the summer scent of lemon and thyme - and of course, mellow, almost honeyed garlic. I got the idea of it from those long-cooked French chicken casseroles with whole garlic cloves and just wanted to spritz it up with lemon for summer. The wonderful thing about it is that you turn the lemon from being a flavouring to being a major player; left in chunks to cook slowly in the oven they seem almost to caramelise and you can eat them, skin, pith and all, their sour bitterness sweetened in the heat.

 

Ingredients

  • 1  chicken (approx.4½lbs) cut into 10 pieces
  • 1 head of garlic (separated into unpeeled cloves)
  • 2 unwaxed lemons (cut into chunky eighths)
  • 1 handful fresh thyme
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • ⅔ cup white wine
  • black pepper

Recipe from Nigella Lawson's FOREVER SUMMER 

Friday
May312013

Chef's Best: Grandma's Pound Cake a Tasty Legacy

By Chef Jason Cobb

It’s kind of sad, really. 

It seems no one knows how to cook anymore. Those of us who are part of the Generation X, remember growing up in our parents and grandparents kitchens. We were either tuaght to cook directy by our family, watched and hoped to learn, or have orginal copies of recipes we hold dear. 

When my grandmother passed away several years in Westminster, I only asked for one thing from the estate - her hand-written recipes she had collected over a lifetime of cooking for her family. My grandmother was an incredible cook. I am sure she learned from her mother, who learned from her mother. I wish this kind of generational goodness was still being passed down!

If you remember the movie “The Sound of Music,” you should remember the song “My Favorite Things.” My favorite thing my grandmother cooked was her homemade pound cake. It was incredible, made with lots of butter, sugar and eggs - the ingredients which make it so good.Traditionally, the pound cake has included a pound of butter, a pound of sugar, a pound of flour and a pound of eggs. But it has evolved over the years to include flavorings, milk, baking soda or power and a number of other custom ingredients.

My grandmother used a number of different flavorings from Superior Flavorings, a company in Charlotte which was sold locally in the “Dixie Store.” Since the closing of Winn Dixie, these flavorings can be difficult to find.One source selling the Superior Flavorings on line can be found here. Any of these flavorings can be used in this pound cake or in any number of other recipes. But whatever you use, the following recipe will result in the best pound cake you have ever tasted.

Grandma’s Pound Cake

2.5 cups All Purpose Flour

.5 tsp Iodized Salt

1.5 tsp Baking Powder

1 pound Unsalted Butter

3 cups Granulated Sugar

6 eggs (room temperature)

1.5 tbs Flavoring (Vanilla or if you can find them one of the Superior varieties)

1, 12 oz can Evaporated Milk

 

Cooking the Cake

  1. Preheat oven to 325° F. Prepare either a large tube pan or two loaf pans by buttering, flouring and lining with parchment paper
  2. Sift together flour, salt and baking powder
  3. Cream butter, sugar together until light and fluffy
  4. Add eggs, one at a time, and beat for 30 seconds between each egg at medium high mixer speed
  5. Add extract and beat again until well incorporated
  6. Alternately add the flour mixture and the evaporated milk until just incorporated
  7. Pour into the prepared pan(s) and bake for 40 to 55 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean

The Glaze

Combine the juice of one lemon, one-half cup or sugar and one cup half&half in a quart saucepan. Bring mixture to a boil and cook for 30 seconds. Any flavoring, about 2 tsp, can be added at this point if you wish. Pour mixture over warm pound cake and allow to cool.

Anderson's own Chef Jason Cobb. Cobb is a graduate and Culinary Fellow of the prestigious Johnson & Wales University. Chef Cobb is also available for catering at 864.367.6047

Tuesday
May282013

An Easy, Cool, Summer Mousse

From Nigella Lawson

Serves: 4-6

When you haven't got time for overnight setting in the fridge or you don't want to use raw eggs, this mousse is perfect. In fact, at all times, constraints or not, it is chocaliciously gorgeous.

  • 1 ½ cups mini marshmallows
  • ½ stick soft butter
  • 9 oz good bittersweet chocolate (minimum 70% cocoa solids) chopped into small pieces
  • ¼ cup hot water (from a recently boiled kettle)
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Visit Nigella.com/recipes