Epicurious Eats: Food for the Soul
As Black History Month is coming to a close, there are still a few things to help this yearly tribute and commemoration continue. This menu contains traditional southern style soul food, a type of cuisine common in African American culture, and ranges in classics from baked biscuits to fried chicken.
Breakfast- Homemade Buttermilk Biscuits
Nothing says good morning like hot biscuits with melted butter. Simple, yet mouth-watering, these biscuits are a southern food not to be missed.
Two cups all-purpose flour
Two teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup shortening
One cup buttermilk
Butter or jam of your preference
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees., then in a medium bowl, sift flour, baking powder, soda and salt together. Cut in shortening, add buttermilk and mix well. Then place on a floured surface, roll out and cut with cookie cutter or shape small rolls by hand. Bake until brown, approximately 20 minutes. This will make about 20 biscuits. Slather with butter or jams of your choosing.
Lunch- Bake Macaroni and Cheese
This dish is called comfort food for a reason. Warm, soft and cheesy, this macaroni and cheese recipe can lift anyone’s spirit.
One box elbow macaroni
One ½ pounds shredded cheddar cheese
One cup whole milk
One stick unsalted butter, softened
A pinch of salt
Pepper for taste
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Microwave the butter on low for about 60 seconds then boil your elbow macaroni according to package instructions. Place cooked and drained macaroni in your casserole dish. Add softened butter, milk, pinch of salt, pepper to taste, and one pound of shredded cheddar cheese. Gently mix to blend the ingredients. Layer the top of your macaroni with the remaining cheese, about 1/2 pound. Bake macaroni with cheese for about one hour. The top layer will turn golden brown when the macaroni is ready.
Dinner- Southern Fried Chicken and Cream Style Corn
Perhaps the most common recipe among soul foods, southern fried chicken, is definitely a must. With a side of cream style corn, nothing could describe southern soul food better than this dish.
Southern Fried Chicken
1/3 cup water
About one cup hot sauce
Two cups flour
One teaspoon pepper
One chicken, cut into pieces
Oil for frying
House seasoning (below)
House seasoning: Mix one cup salt, 1/4 cup black pepper and 1/4 cup garlic powder
In a medium size bowl, beat the eggs with the water. Add enough hot sauce so the egg mixture is bright orange. In another bowl, combine the flour and pepper. Season the chicken with the house seasoning. Dip the seasoned chicken in the egg, and then coat well in the flour mixture. Heat the oil in a deep pot. Do not fill the pot more than 1/2 full with oil. Fry the chicken in the oil until brown and crisp. It should take dark meat about 13 to 14 minutes, white meat around eight to 10 minutes.
Cream Style Corn
Six ears fresh corn
1/4 cup butter
Four tablespoons water, divided
1 teaspoon sugar
1 tablespoon flour
1/2 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup milk or half-and-half
Using a sharp knife, scrape corn kernels from the cob into a bowl and set aside. In a large skillet, melt butter then add corn mixture. Next add in three tablespoons water and sugar, stirring constantly. Continue to cook the corn until it’s tender. Once corn becomes tender, mix one tablespoon of water, with one tablespoon of flour, salt, and pepper, blending well. Finally, gradually add your milk. Cook and stir cream-style corn continuously for two to five minutes. Serve immediately.
Enjoy these dishes while keeping in mind their southern roots. These meals will warm your stomach and inflict reminiscent thoughts about those home-cooked meals you may miss. Happy eating!
By Emma Needham