In an attempt to be 'fair and balanced'...

seitan…I thought I’d post this picture of the seitan I made and wrote about a couple of weeks ago.

I wanted to show that delicious, healthy food can look just as unappetizing as the artery-clogger I posted on Friday. This is my seitan, right before getting sliced and tossed into a yummy stir-fry. Sorta like skinless chicken breasts, which also look pretty nasty, especially to chickens.

If anyone is interested in the recipe, leave a comment or send me an email and I’ll write it out for you. I combined a bunch of recipes, added some ingredients, forgot to add some others, and it came out great.

I do have a couple of southern vegan/vegetarian cookbooks: Cookin’ Southern Vegetarian Style and a really neat split cookbook: Hot Damn and Hell Yeah/The Dirty South Cookbook. They are both filled with tasty recipes. Big Bubba Tofu in the Trailer Park Specials section is living proof that grease and salt are not just the provenance of the meat and potatoes set.

cookingsouthernBut Southern cooking is a lot more than barbequed rodents and chicken-fried tofu. If you drive along a country road in the south you’ll pass cotton fields, tobacco barns, then a Free Will Baptist church. More cotton fields, then the Pentecostal church. Tobacco and another Baptist. And so on.hotdamnhellyeah

Southern cooking is covered-dish lunches and suppers at these little country churches. (I know, it’s not just a Southern thang, but since we’re here….)

I got to experience real Southern cooking and hospitality during the middle of NaNoWriMo. It was a glorious clear, warm fall day and my little church choir drove a couple of hours to sing at a tiny Universalist Church that was celebrating its 125 years as “an oasis of liberalism in a desert of orthodoxy.”

What an understatement. In the church foyer, looking like the Smith Bros. cough drop box, hung two pictures of the founding ministers, side by bearded side. One had served in the Confederate Army during the Civil War, while the other had fought for the Union, indicating from the get-go “the congregation’s willingness to embrace diversity of opinion and outlook.”

After the service, we went out back where picnic tables were piled high with the most amazing assortment of dishes: fried chicken, chicken and dumplings, fried okra, fried tomatoes, succotash, Crowder peas, baked beans, mashed potatoes, hush puppies, fruit salad, collards, green beans, ham, cornbread, biscuits and gravy, all waiting to be washed down with big pitchers of sweet tea.

While we ate, the kids played hide and seek in the ancient church graveyard next to the picnic tables. Birds sang, the sun shone, leaves rustled in the breeze. Time was…timeless.

Then we moved on to the dessert table, and Lordy, Lordy!! Pecan pie, chocolate pecan pie, red devil cake, lemon squares, cherry pie, chocolate cream pie.

Yeah, I had two slices of the made-from-scratch 7-Up pound cake. It was awesome.

And that is Southern cooking. Enjoy, y’all.

10 comments to In an attempt to be ‘fair and balanced’…

  • “I wanted to show that delicious, healthy food can look just as unappetizing as the artery-clogger I posted on Friday.”

    LOL!

    I think I need to get me some of that 7-Up pound cake you mentioned.

  • I remember hearing about that feast! I love you, but I think I’ll skip the recipe. 🙂
    I promise to eat something else as non-artery, clogging if you promise not to be offended.

    I love this, “One had served in the Confederate Army during the Civil War, while the other had fought for the Union, indicating from the get-go “the congregation’s willingness to embrace diversity of opinion and outlook.””
    That is absolutely awesome!

  • You are right – This looks very unappealing to me — yuck!

    Of course, I could stand to lose some weight and if I had to eat THAT I would have a much easier time dieting. 😉

    I’m with Dayner. I promise to eat something a little less greasy, just don’t make me eat that!

    • Natasha

      Well, the lack of visual appeal is why I didn’t post it initially. I think food photography is one of those special skills/crafts (like writing) that requires some actual talent and technique.

      I’m glad all this southern food stuff came up and got me to pull out these cookbooks. I see a bunch of stuff I want to try.

  • Well, I’d like to know whats in those little suckers! I’m game to try them!

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