Sunday, May 30, 2010


Saturday evening's dinner was at The Q Shack on University Drive in Durham.  The un-ex suggested it and he did not have to ask twice.  It had been quite a while since I was there.  North Carolina is well-known for its 'que.  I like the slaw right on my sandwich, not on the side. The cabbage in the slaw was nice and crunchy and the dressing was just right, not too sweet or mayonnaise-y.  I chose creamed spinach for my side.  It is one of my favorites... and I continue to search for the perfect recipe to make at home, but without success yet.  I think I am the only one in my house who likes it, but that doesn't stop me from trying new recipes periodically.  The Q Shack's was delicious, with little bits of onions peeking through the spinach.  And who could eat BBQ without hot hushpuppies?  Pas moi.  I admit to dipping them in the spinach, too.
The un-ex had a sandwich, too, but he chose macaroni and cheese for his side dish.
We all love mac and cheese around here.  I make it a couple of times a month for the eaters.
We sat outside at one of the big picnic tables.  There are rolls of paper towels on the tables (eating BBQ can be messy business) and the condiments are kept in beer six-pack cartons.  Our beverage of choice was iced tea.  It's pretty sweet, just the way my guys like it.  I mix it half and half with the unsweetened stuff.
People-watching tends to be one of our favorite activities.  The un-ex spotted some folks arriving with their own loaf of white bread.  I didn't see it.  They sat down inside with their BBQ and made their own sandwiches.  I should've gone back inside to spy... you know, pretending to get more tea or to go to the bathroom.  I could have at least found out what kind of bread they preferred!  A missed opportunity.  Dang.
While on sabbatical in France, Chef Dorette and I made a Southern dinner for our French friends.  They were very skeptical about American food.  Our hushpuppies were the hit of the night, though, at least for Didier.  I can't remember what we used in place of cornmeal-- good luck finding that in France!  Rice flour maybe? There was usually a variety of flours in the bin in that kitchen.  Chef Érick requested egg nog (in the middle of August!) and it, too, was quite popular.  Jack Daniels is available down at the Monoprix in Place Lamartine, in case you need some the next time you are in Arles.

Hushpuppies with Country Ham and Remoulade Sauce
(from the Culinary Institute of New Orleans by way of C'est si Bon! and Dorette Snover)

1 c. cornmeal
1 c. all-purpose flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. sugar
1 tsp. salt
1 egg
3/4 c. milk
Dash of red pepper
Handful of fried lardons (bacon will do)
Handful of fried okra, if you wish
1/2 c. green onions (tops, chopped)

Mix cornmeal, flour, baking powder, sugar and salt together well.  Combine egg, milk, pepper, onion tops and onion.  Add to flour mixture and stir well.  Heat oil to 375F.  Drop batter by spoonfuls into deep-fryer and cook until golden brown.  Drain on paper towels.

Remoulade Sauce

1/2 c. each mayonnaise and creole mustard (Zatarain's or whole-grain country-style Dijon)
1/4 c. green pepper, diced finely
1/2 lemon, squeezed
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 Tbsp. paprika

Blend ingredients and set aside until ready to serve, if less than an hour.  If longer, refrigerate.

Bon appétit, my Arles gang!  Come to NC and try some BBQ!

1 comment:

dorette said...

how could it be 2 years since? forever will it live on in memory!