There comes a time in every girl’s life when her parents move away from her childhood home. I just didn’t think mine would sell everything and move to McClellanville, S.C.
For as far back as I can remember, my family has always dreamed of owning a working farm. On long car drives (like the one time we drove from Florida to Canada), we’d make up names for the horses, goats, chickens, pigs, cows and alpacas we one day would have. Mental lists would be made of the vegetables we’d grow, the fruit we would pick and how far north or south we would have to be for growing conditions to be right. It was hard for me to choose between growing peaches and cherries; I think my answer changed depending on which fruit was in-season at the time.
“Animals and plants,” my mom would say, “Animals and plants.” They were the best companions.
While the new homestead has yet to completely replace the old, the fact that my parents have said, “We’re fixing up the property to sell,” let’s me know they’re serious.
“We’re looking at a few places up near McClellanville,” let’s me know that they’re crazy.
Funny how things really never change.
In other news, this past weekend I finally got my first real tastes of fall. Pumpkin doughnuts were made (and repurposed into bread pudding), college football was full of upsets (like my Gators beating LSU), I went on Boone Hall’s Fright Night Hay Ride, and found myself lulled into a nap by reading The Lee Bros. Southern Cookbook.
Couldn’t let the fabulousness stop, so I made this for dinner:
PUMPKIN DOUGHNUTS BREAD PUDDING
After making the pumpkin spice doughnuts this past weekend, I’ve decided that I’ll leave it to the professionals or when I have a lot of time. Frying doughnuts isn’t as easy as it looks. Besides, I’d rather not deal with the clean up! This recipe is a great way to get rid of any leftover bread, including day old doughnuts.
- 1 1/2 cups whole milk (Or 1 cup heavy cream plus 1/2 cup whole milk)
- 3/4 cup canned solid-pack pumpkin
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 2 large eggs plus 1 yolk
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
- Pinch of ground cloves
- 1 tbsp vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons bourbon (optional)
- 5 cups cubed (1-inch) day-old pumpkin doughnuts
- 3/4 stick unsalted butter
Preheat oven to 350°F with rack in middle.
While preheating oven to 350°F with rack in middle, melt butter in bottom of a 8-inch square baking dish. Once it is melted, take it out of the oven and toss bread cubes with butter, coating thoroughly. In a separate bowl, whisk together all the remaining ingredients. Pour them over buttered bread cubes in baking dish, stirring to make sure all pieces are evenly coated. Bake until custard is set, 25 to 30 minutes.
FRIED GREEN BLT SALAD
Better for you than a sandwich, but it doesn’t skimp on flavor!
Adapted from The Lee Bros. Southern Cookbook
- 3 tbsp cornmeal
- 1/2 cup flower
- generous pinch kosher salt
- freshly cracked black pepper
Salad and Tomatoes
- 3 slices of bacon
- romaine lettuce
- coconut oil
- 1 green tomato
- 3/4 cup buttermilk
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- fresh herbs (optional)
- 4-5 tbsp fresh lime juice
- 1 egg
- 1/4 cup milk
- In a cold pan, add the bacon slices. I like to chop mine up first. Turn pan to medium heat. Return to this pan frequently to turn bacon so it doesn’t burn.
- Prepare the dredge mix by combining all of the required ingredients.
- Prepare the egg wash by whisking the egg and milk together.
- Slice tomatoes.
- Heat coconut oil in a pan, enough to so that it raises 1/4″ on the sides of the pan, over medium-high heat.
- Prepare the tomatoes by dredging, shaking excess flour, dunking in the egg wash, dredging again and frying until golden brown.
- Once bacon is crisp, rest on paper towels to soak up grease. I save the remaining bacon grease for vinaigrettes.
- Chop romaine lettuce and place in a bowl. Add bacon.
- Mix buttermilk, olive oil, herbs, salt, and fresh lime juice. Add scallions, Mix until combined.
- Dress romaine. Top with fried green tomatoes!