For September’s Sunday Family Dinner, we decided to jump back to North America and head down South for our inspiration. Southern American Comfort Food to be exact.
You know….the type of food that kind of sticks to your ribs but is OH-SO-GOOD! Worth every calorie.
So we gathered the fam to my seester T’s house on a September Sunday—which just so happened to be one of the craziest, scorching last days of summer. (Which explains why our hair was done up like fräuleins to combat the heat!)
And how cute are my seesters‘ with their fams?
To combat the heat and toast our monthly Family Dinners, we started off with cold, refreshing cocktails—my version of a Sparkling Hard Lemonade. Freshly made lemonade, vodka, citrus soda, lemon slices, and fresh mint sprigs all in a mason jar….to keep with the Southern theme. 🙂
And what’s a Southern meal without collard greens?
Eldest seester, N, stewed down these green beauties with this lovely ham hock. Salty, porky, slightly bitter and just darn tummy -lovin’!
And since we were dabbling in the South, I had to channel Kathy Bates, Jessica Tandy, Mary Stuart Matherson, and Mary-Louise Parker. Yeah..you know what I’m talking about….
My version was quick, crispy, slightly tart and deep fried.
I also took the lead with our main dish…..Crispy Fried Chicken.
It was a no brainer that I opted for Chef Thomas Keller’s beloved Lemon-Brined Fried Chicken. It’s one of the most popular dishes from his restaurant Ad Hoc and after trying it, I don’t doubt it!
The recipe is not difficult but it does take time. The citrus and herbaceous brine makes the chicken so incredible juicy and aromatic. And the crust–when done well, it becomes surprisingly light and almost feathery!
We did have a little trouble with our chicken as we fried them in Dutch Ovens on the outside barbecue burners. But since the burners couldn’t hold a consistent level of heat, we kept on having to adjust the temperature and move the chicken around. Nothing too crazy but it did take a bit longer than expected.
Unfortunately these photos didn’t do it justice (I went from using my DSLR to my iPhone) but the rest of our dinner was just as scrumptious! Seester T made rich Mac & Cheese and down-home delish Cheddar Biscuits with Sausage Gravy. There was also some grilled corn but I just couldn’t fit it in my tummy!
Now I’m told that original Southern Comfort Food was rich and filling in order to give folks the sustenance and energy to do a full day of hard, physical work. We DEFINITLEY didn’t do any of that after inhaling this goodness but we DID take a 15 minute stroll around the block. 🙂 Better than nothing, right?
And then we came back from our walk to have some dessert….
Caramel Apple Pie a la Mode that was INSANELY good. So good that I actually didn’t feel bad about eating it after our gazillion calorie dinner.
As I said before….Worth Every Calorie.
And with that dear friends, we wrapped up another successful Sunday Family Dinner!
New England Fare! Lobstah’s and shellfish beware! 🙂
This Month’s Family Dinner Menu
Cocktails: Sparkling Hard Lemonade
Appetizers: Fried Green Tomatoes
Entrees: Crispy Fried Chicken, Cheddar Biscuits with Sausage Gravy, Mac & Cheese, Collard Greens
Dessert: Caramel Apple Pie a la Mode