Posted in Food Joy

Sunday Night Broth

If you’ve read much of my little blog, you may remember that it doesn’t take much to make me giddily happy.

Think Red Hots.

When I am in the depths of despair, if you hand me a box of Red Hots, all of a sudden, I am a 10 on the Happiness Scale. Like a toddler.

So tonight as I was preparing a Thanksgiving Post-Gluttonous Salad for HR and me, I saw all the beginning-to-wilt produce from our holiday meals. And felt sad. (I obviously needed Red Hots.)

So I decided to make broth!!!

I make homemade broth regularly with leftover vegetable scraps. Don’t you? And use it for soups, stews, smoothies, or just a healthy sip.

Tonight I plopped in scraps from green onions, bok choy, celery, spinach and yellow onions.

In a few minutes, I will smell the incredible aroma and then pour the life-enhancing elixir into these …

Peaceful Sunday Night Slumber to You.

The finished product …

Posted in Delicious Joy

My Saturday Evening Post: 11/19/22 “I Miss Tomatoes”

About this time of year, every year, I fall into the “depths of despair,” borrowing a phrase from my very good friend, Anne of Green Gables.

Why so low, you ask? Simple.

THERE ARE NO LOCAL, SUMMERY, VINE- RIPENED TOMATOES!!!

The tomatoes you find at the grocery store this time of year are, to use part of Donald Trump’s newsy allegation, “fake” tomatoes!

They taste like … well, fake tomatoes.

Side Note: Please do not tell anyone that I agreed, even if just half agreed, with anything Donald Trump has ever said.

So what I like to do in mid-November is remember, somehow both sadly and joyfully, July tomatoes.

Here are a few memories of the Real Deals.

The vine-ripened beauties my parents always had on the table (along with “fried corn” snd candied yams) when I went home for a summer visit.

My Tomato Pies!

Tomato beauty.

I miss you, July Tomatoes.

Posted in Food Joy

Collarding Up

I love fall food.

One of my VERY favorites is, well, ANYTHING in the Leafy Greens Family.

Collards, Turnips, Mustard, even Poke Salad. (You have to be careful with Poke Salad—it can be poisonous. But it was my Granny’s favorite, and she taught me how to find it. In the wild.)

Well, yesterday, I found a beautiful bunch of local Savannah collards at our favorite little grocer near us in Habersham Village.

If you have read a bit on my blog, you know that HR (Husband Robert) is the fancy pants chef, and I’m the I-cook-what-Mama-taught-me fellow. Usually in cast iron.

So last night I pulled out our cast iron (heavy!) Dutch oven. (Okay, technically Robert pulled it out.)

And I went to work.

First, you gotta wash the greens, if you buy them fresh. And why wouldn’t you? A time-consuming task.

My Washed-Collards Bouquet.

I cut the thickest stems away from the leaves.

But don’t throw them away! I make homemade vegetable broth with them.

After cooking the ham hocks in water to provide the base for the “pot liquor,” I sauté onions and garlic in a bit of olive oil in the Dutch oven, pour the liquid from the ham hocks in, layer the ham hocks on top, and cover until the greens wilt.

Two hours of slow simmering later …

HR loves my pickled jalapeños, so he had to put some of that “sauce” and pickles on his greens.

The beautifully delicious “pot liquor” …

See it?
HR got every last drop.

Oh, and what to do with the leftovers? Well, give some to ex-wife Donna, of course.

With a side of “healthy corn.”

And freeze the rest.

Fall Collard Joy

Posted in My Saturday Evening Post

My Saturday Evening Post: 8/13/22 “Pie Evolution”

Yesterday, I fashioned my only-once-a-season summer tradition …

Neal’s Savannah Summer Tomato Pie.

Both labor and time-intensive, it is nevertheless a delight to the eyes, nose and tastebuds.

First the ingredients. Home grown tomatoes, if possible, and if not, locally grown ones at a produce stand or farmers market. HR and I get ours at Davis Produce a few miles away from us near Tybee Island.

Fresh basil and chives.

Diced bacon and shallots.

Wait, here’s a riveting video!

Layering cheese, bacon, herbs and shallot mixture with the tomatoes.

Into the oven.

An hour later.

Tomato Joy!