The South is known for its delicious home cooking; you can find fried chicken or BBQ pork on menus all over the country. When I started dating my husband, who came to Liberty County from Oregon when he joined the Army, I realized a good bit of my favorite meals were a little bizarre to the outsider. Some of our most cooked and loved foods are also dishes the rest of the country think we’re crazy for eating!
Neck Bones and Rice This was definitely a “feel good” meal that we all looked forward to in my house. My Mammaw would make this for my family pretty regularly and just drop it off like a fairy godmother. She’d get a couple pounds of pork neck bones and throw them in a pot on the stove to sear. After a few minutes, add some water and turn the stove down to low. Let the neck bones simmer for a few hours and then bring them back to a boil. Throw in some white rice and let simmer for a half hour, and dinner is ready!
Chitterlings If you’re from the South, you probably have no clue what that word is because you would have spelled our next weird food “chit-lins.” Chitterlings are pork intestines usually boiled or fried and served with greens. Add a little hot sauce and a slice of cornbread and you’ve got a true southern delicacy!
Squirrel/Frog Legs/Gator Tail If you weren’t raised in the Bible Belt chances are you’ve never had any of the aforementioned delicacies. I imagine these were all popular meals because the meat was plentiful and easy to catch! All three can be cooked just like a chicken leg. Soak the cleaned meat overnight in buttermilk with your preferred seasonings, coat with flour and fry those babies up! Make sure to take the nerve out if you decide to try frog legs, or they’ll hop right out of the pan! Once you’ve cooked them, add a little hot sauce to top ‘em off!
Brunswick Stew Why anyone could possibly think this dish is weird just baffles me. Mary Prince, the Chamber & CVB’s First Impression Coordinator, made this for us last fall and it was to die for! She took a smoked pork butt and cut it up into bite size pieces. Then threw it in a large pot with some chopped onions, diced tomatoes, sweet corn and whole kernel corn. The pot simmered for a few hours, then she salted to taste. Last she added diced potatoes and peas and let simmer until potatoes are soft. My goodness, it was amazing!
Fried Green Tomatoes It’s no secret that anyone down here loves the delicious tomato. We bake it in pies, we make a sandwich with it, and in true Southern fashion we fry it! To make them, get a few unripe tomatoes, dip them in egg, then cornmeal and throw ‘em in the skillet. Fried green tomatoes are more than just a movie around here, they’re a staple on every southern menu.
Giblet Gravy This is a personal favorite of mine, and my Dad makes it every year for Thanksgiving. Before she passed away, my Granny Fanny would show up early for Thanksgiving dinner just to sit by the grill with a coffee mug full of giblet gravy. This gravy is pretty simple, just take some turkey drippings and add a little water and flour to make creamy. Throw in diced onion and celery and let simmer, salt and pepper to taste. Last you’ll add in a little turkey meat and some boiled egg. Let it cook until you can’t stand not to eat it anymore!
Be sure to check out our Southern Cooks video series with more recipes everyone will love! Our next episode is Friday March 3, at 2pm. We’ll be cooking breakfast tacos with produce from the Farmers Market with Judi Mills of Southern Sweets!
Erin Johnson- Creative & Content Coordinator for the Liberty County CVB
The Right Blend Blog is written by two different authors employed by the Liberty County Chamber/CVB. As we are able, we rotate weeks and each writes about our individual experiences, opinions and let our writing reflect our personalities and creativity. All content provided on The Right Blend blog is for informational purposes only. The owner of this blog makes no representations as to the accuracy or completeness of any information on this site or found by following any link on this site.