I was born on Capitol Hill in Washington DC. My mom, Izetta, was born in Tennessee and raised in Waterford, Virginia. My dad, Charles Irving, was born in a small town outside of Leesburg, Virginia. Most of my aunts and uncles remained in Virginia. We would drive to the country every Sunday and had wonderful Sunday dinners with relatives. My mom would help cook in their big country kitchens. Nothing says comfort like southern food and. . .good ole' hospitality is truly a southern tradition.
The best scallops I have ever had, are from Digby, Nova Scotia, Canada. The scallops in this recipe are East Coast Sea Scallops and are also very sweet. Scallops should not have a strong odor but should smell like the ocean. You may have extra grits left over, but you can refrigerate and reheat in the microwave for breakfast the next morning.
2 cups water
2 cups whole
1 t sea salt
1 cup stone
ground white or yellow grits (not instant)
1 cup grated sharp
2 T unsalted
2 t extra-light
olive oil or grape seed oil
½ red bell pepper, diced
8 sea scallops
Salt and freshly ground
1 clove garlic, minced
2 chorizo sausages, removed
from casings and crumbled
½ cup chicken
1 T lemon juice
2 scallions, thinly sliced
Hot sauce, for serving
Lemon wedges, for serving
In a medium saucepan, bring water, milk, and salt to a boil.
Gradually whisk in grits, reduce heat to the lowest setting, cover and simmer, about 15 to 18 minutes, stirring frequently.
Remove from heat, stir in cheddar cheese and butter.
Cover and keep warm until ready to serve.
While grits are cooking,
heat oil in a skillet and sauté the red bell pepper for 2 to 3
Spoon into a small bowl
and set aside.
Pat scallops dry, on both
sides, with a paper towel, and season with salt and pepper.
In the same skillet, raise heat to medium-high. Cook
the scallops until a golden brown, about 2 minutes on each side. Do not
Transfer to a baking sheet
and keep warm in a 225 degree F oven.
In the same skillet, brown chorizo for about 7 to 8 minutes, while stirring.
Add garlic and cook
Add chicken stock and
Simmer another minute.
Spoon grits into 2 warm
bowls and spoon on the chorizo and sauce.
Add 4 scallops per bowl
and top with the bell peppers and sliced scallions.
This is the type of salad you would get when you went to a steakhouse years ago. I remember having a salad similar to this in a steakhouse in Oak Park, Illinois. My family always loved this salad. It's not fancy but very delicious. If you add a couple more eggs, it would be a complete meal.
4 slices bacon, diced 3 hard boiled eggs
1 small head iceberg lettuce, core removed and chopped
½ red onion, cut in half and thinly sliced
½ cup chopped green olives
16 cherry tomatoes, cut in half or 2 medium tomatoes, diced
4 scallions, chopped
½ cup mayonnaise
2 T apple cider vinegar
1 clove garlic, minced
2 t granulated sugar
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Fry bacon until crisp and set aside. Chop eggs, and set aside.
Chop lettuce and place in a salad bowl.
Add red onion, olives, tomatoes, and scallions to
In a small bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise,
vinegar, garlic, and sugar.
Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Pour over salad and toss.
Add the bacon and chopped eggs and gently toss again.
This is easy to put together as long as you make the Salsa Fresca first and set aside. You can also buy already prepared salsa to make it even easier on yourself. Chop or shred the cheese, have the beans heated, cook the potatoes and chorizo, if you want to include them in your meal. Chop up the cilantro and slice the avocado after you scramble your eggs.
Salsa Fresca 2 cups finely chopped tomatoes 2 T finely chopped red onion 1 T finely chopped jalapeño pepper ¼ cup chopped cilantro leaves 1 scallion, chopped ½ t red wine vinegar Zest and juice of ½ lime 1 T extra-virgin olive oil Sea salt, to taste 2 flour tortillas 1 can enchilada red sauce Monterey Jack cheese, shredded or finely chopped 1 can black beans, heated 4 eggs, scrambled 1 avocado, sliced Cilantro leaves Chorizo sausage, optional Country fried potatoes, optional
In a large cast-iron skillet over medium heat, toast one side of the tortilla. Spread on a ladle of the enchilada sauce. Sprinkle on half of the cheese.
On half of the tortilla, add some beans and then top with half of the scrambled eggs. Fold the tortilla over and using a large spatula, place on a baking sheet and keep warm in a 225 degree F oven while preparing the other tortilla.
Place each tortilla on warm plates. Tuck in some salsa, avocado slices, and cilantro. Place a scoop of sour cream on the side and serve with Chorizo and potatoes, if desired. Serves 2
My mom would make this stew with leftover turkey
after Thanksgiving, but my favorite was when she made it with chicken.
1 whole chicken, cut up or 8 bone-in
chicken pieces, skin removed
1 qt chicken broth
2 cups water
1 t chicken bouillon
2 bay leaves
2 sprigs fresh thyme or 1 t dried thyme
6 T unsalted butter
⅓ cup all-purpose flour
3 stalks celery, diced
4 medium carrots, peeled & sliced
1 large onion, diced
2 T minced fresh parsley
Salt and freshly ground black plepper
¼ cup milk ¾ cup frozen peas
12 Southern Buttermilk Biscuits
Place chicken in a large pot or Dutch
oven with chicken broth, water, bouillon, bay leaves, and thyme.
Bring to a boil, lower heat, partially
cover and simmer for 1 hour.
Using tongs, remove chicken from broth and set aside on a platter to cool. When cool enough to
handle, pull meat from bones and shred or cut into large bite size pieces, discarding
bones and set aside.
Strain the broth through a colander into
a large heat resistant glass pitcher. In a 12-inch cast iron skillet, melt
butter, then add the flour, whisking constantly.
Cook and whisk the roux until a light
golden color; this takes about 10 minutes.
Add the chicken broth, celery, carrots, and onion, and simmer for 20 minutes. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Add parsley, salt,
pepper, half & half or milk, and peas, and simmer another minute.
Add the chicken to the skillet and
gently mix in. Place biscuits on top of stew, place in oven, and bake 20 to 25 minutes, or until biscuits are golden brown and stew is bubbling hot.
Serves 4-6 * If you use store bought biscuits, you may want to pre-bake them on a baking sheet for about 10 minutes (to ensure biscuit bottoms are not gooey) and then place on top of stew and bake another 15 minutes, or until golden brown and stew is bubbling hot.