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eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI Greenhouse on Porter | Welcome Home Beef | Primos Cheese Straws

VOLUME 9, NUMBER 4 eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI

Savor the End of Summer

AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2020 $

4.95

August/September 2020

Give summer a great send off with Mediterranean Catfish, Roasted Okra and Blueberry Peach Cobbler

www.eatdrinkmississippi.com DISPLAY UNTIL SEPTEMBER 30, 2020

eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 1


We appreciate your hard work and dedication to serving our community through these challenging and uncertain times

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Order take-out or purchase gift cards from your favorite restaurants. Purchasing a gift card now for future use can help them get through this challenging time, as we all work together to return to business as usual. eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 3


Take-out Restaurants to Help You Take-on This School Year BY PAIGE MCKAY

A

fter a long day at school or work, cooking dinner can be the last thing anyone wants to do. On top of homework, laundry, soccer practice and whatever else life may bring, dinner is at the bottom of the list. Thankfully,

Brent’s Drugs - 655 Duling Avenue Known for their diner fare, you can enjoy Brent’s in your own home with their easy online ordering option. Your food can be picked up within 20 minutes of ordering, or you can even schedule a time to pick it up later. All your favorite Brent’s entrees are available for online ordering including the Brent’s Burger and Patty Melt or the Junior Burger and Grilled cheese for the kids. And, of course, don’t forget an order of French fries or any of the other tasty sides to go with your meal. If you’re looking for a lighter option, choose from any of Brent’s salads. To place an order online for pickup, visit brentsdrugs.com and select “Order Online”.

Crazy Cat Eat Up 1491 Canton Mart Road, Suite 12 Located in Canton Mart Square, Crazy Cat is known for their Southern inspired dishes and fromscratch desserts that the whole family will love. Dinner is served Thursday through Saturday, so if you’re looking to let someone else do the cooking at the end of a long week, Crazy Cat offers curbside service to make your life a little easier. The dinner menu changes each week and can usually be found on their Facebook page. Expect dishes like Pimento Cheese Nabs or a Wedge Salad as an appetizer, and entrees like Sweet Tea Brined Pork Chops, Grilled Salmon, Blackened Catfish and Red Wine Braised Boneless Short Ribs. Check out facebook.com/crazycateatup for their menu offerings each week and call 601-957-1441 to place an order.

4 • August/September 2020

many local restaurants are still offering curbside service and to-go orders to make your life a little easier when it comes to dinnertime. Here are a few great options to get a delicious weeknight meal to-go.

Pig and Pint - 3139 North State Street If your family is craving BBQ, order online from Pig and Pint for the perfect BBQ dinner at home without all the work of preparing it. Like Brent’s, you can pick up your food as soon as you order, or you can schedule a time to pick it up later. On Pig and Pint’s menu, you will find all your usual favorites, as well as Family Packs that are perfect for an entire family or large group. The P&P 4 Pack serves four and includes your choice of pulled pork, smoked chicken or brisket and your choice of sides. For even bigger groups, opt for the P&P 6 pack, 12 pack. For more information on menu items and to place an order, visit pigandpint.com and click “Order Online”.

Aplos - 4500 I55 N., Suite 714 Highland Village Pictured right If you’re in the mood for Mediterranean food or pizza, Aplos in Highland Village is offering takeout via online ordering for a flavorful weeknight dinner. Start out with any of the Aplos appetizers for a tasty start, and choose from any of their salads, wraps, gyros, burgers and plate dinners for your main course. If pizza night sounds good to the family, choose from Margherita, Pepperoni, Aplos Supreme or several other delicious pizzas. You can even order a pizza kit that comes with raw dough and all the ingredients to make personal pizzas for the whole family. To place an order online, visit eataplos.com. You can also order via phone and add a frozen cocktail, beer, or bottle of wine with your order at 601-714-8989.


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MISSISSIPI VISITJACKSON.COM eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 5


CONTENTS August/September 2020 Volume 9 Number 4

22 50 in this issue 16 SAVOR THE SEASON Discover fresh, healthy and lively ways to make your favorite dishes

22 GET TO KNOW THE GREENHOUSE

30 in every issue 8 From the Editor 9

What’s Happening

12 Fabulous Foodie Finds 14 A Taste of Magnolia 52 Recipe/Ad Index 54 Till We Eat Again 6 • August/September 2020

PORTER: Learn about Ocean Springs’ café gem

27 DIVE INTO MEDITERRANEAN CUISINE: Two fresh salads to keep you cool and satiated

28 WELCOME HOME BEEF: Read about the Starkville family business of quality beef

32 WALMART FOUNDATION FUNDING FUELS NEW FOOD PRESCRIPTION PROGRAM

34 FRENCH HERMIT OYSTER COMPANY:

38 EMERALD COAST TRIP: FUN, SUN AND INTERESTING FOOD FINDS

42 FROM THE BOOKSHELF The Campfire Cookbook

44 RAISE YOUR GLASS Strawberry Summer Sunset

46 PERMANENTLY TRANSFORM YOUR WEIGHT AND HEALTH: Get yourself right while you ride out quarantine

47 STAYCATIONS AND RESTAURANTS TO CURE PANDEMIC BLUES

46 WHERE TO EAT: Fields Steak and Oyster Bar

46 SUMMER BAKING: When Summer Gives You Lemons...

Famous Mississippi farmed oysters

36 PRIMOS CARAMEL ICING AND CHEESE STRAWS: Sweet and savory meet at this Jackson favorite café ON THE COVER: mediterranean Catfish by Lisa LaFontaine Bynum, page 20.


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{ from the editor }

Say Goodbye to Summer and Wave “Hello” to Autumn BY REBECCA FENDING

A

s summer comes to a blazing end, we begin to prepare for the changes that accompany autumn. Whether it be teachers and students preparing for the start of a new school year, be it virtual or in person, or business professionals returning to a more regular schedule after the impact of the pandemic, life always seems to simultaneously hand us endings and beginnings. However, the end of summer also means the start to fall- a favorite season for a majority of people. To those of us that have a weakness for pumpkins and the rich smell and taste of cloves, September 1 means breaking out the cable-knit sweaters, flannel blankets and leafy décor while the oven warms for the season’s first batch of gingersnaps. You can never start the autumn season too early; just ask grocery stores that start stocking pumpkin, pumpkin spice and cinnamon flavored merchandise in mid-August. Also, just how many cinnamon spiced beverages per day is too many? Although the transition from one season to the next is typically unpredictable (how many times have you packed away your short sleeves only to be forced into wearing them again?), it is hard to suppress the excitement of rolling into the holiday-filled latter half of the year. As 2020 has been especially erratic and turbulent, the comfort we find in the familiarity of our ritualistic autumn traditions will hopefully help ease us into stability. Not to mention that there is no better way to steady yourself than with a warm mug and embraces from long-missed family. However, the warm, summery weather certainly has not disappeared. If you are looking to round out your season with a few more grilled treats, grilled peaches are the way to go. We tend to forget about the beauty and unique taste of fresh, seasonal fruit on the grill when thinking of how to use our favorite summer appliance. With peach season coming to a close, nothing compares to the last quality of the last few ripe peaches of the season. Paired with the melted goodness of cinnamon brown sugar butter, these peaches could not be a better summer send off. edm

GRILLED PEACHES 3 ripe peaches ½ stick butter (salted or unsalted) 1 teaspoon cinnamon 2 tablespoons brown sugar Pinch of salt (optional, depending on butter type) Oil of your choice (vegetable or canola is recommended) 1. In a medium bowl, combine butter, cinnamon, sugar and salt until homogenous. If using salted butter, omit the pinch of salt. 2. Heat grill to high, then halve and pit peaches. Brush oil onto the flesh and place them face down on the grill. Cook until desired brown/tenderness. Fill center with the cinnamon sugar butter. Eat with a fork and knife (or your bare hands, you won’t see any judgement from me) and enjoy! You can also use this recipe with pineapple in place of peaches! Simple grill pineapple rings in the same way you would the peaches and spread on the butter mixture while still hot.

EAT DRINK MISSISSIPPI (USPS 17200) is published bi-monthly by Connected Community Media Group, 10971 Four Seasons Pl. Ste. 211, Crown Point, IN 46307. Periodicals postage paid at Madison, MS, and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Please mail changes of address to P.O. Box 1663, Madison, MS 39130.

8 • August/September 2020


{ what’s happening }

Modified MadCAAP Operations

M

adCAAP (Madison Countians Allied Against Poverty) is currently closed to the public, but continues to box and distribute nearly 100 boxes of food every Monday for the local community through their Food Drive-Through. MadCAAP’s Food for Thought fundraiser is canceled for this year. As this event normally creates a large portion of their budgeting and funds from year to year, they ask that you donate

in other ways to help them overcome this loss. MadCAAP has partnered with Extra Table and created T-shirts available for purchase to help raise money for the Food Pantry. For $22 and free shipping, you can help support this organization. You can also make donations online by visiting their website madcaap.org edm

From the Mississippi Craft Center:

T

hese past few months have been a bit crazy. As everything slowly starts to re-open, it can be difficult to know what is open and available. The Craftsmen’s Guild of Mississippi, however, is happy to announce that we are open and ready for business! Not only are our galleries open, but we have various demonstrations on location here at the Bill Waller Mississippi Craft Center, in Ridgeland, led by our own skilled craftsmen. Open doors are not the only exciting news we have, however. Summer is here, and that means it’s time for Creative Craft Camp. Camp will be available for ages five to eight, and participants will get to try their hand at a new craft each day. Classes will be led by our own skilled Guild members. COVID-19 has changed a lot of things and camp is no exception. Camp will have limited space available, and strict adherence to CDC guidelines will be followed. We are excited to re-open our doors and offer programs for the community, and we can not wait to see you again! If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to call, visit our website, or visit us in person at the Bill Waller Mississippi Craft Center, in Ridgeland, or the Outlets of Mississippi, in Pearl. edm

eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 9


VENDORS WANTED We are currently seeking magazine vendors in all areas of the state.

If you would like to sell this magazine at your business, call 601-427-5694 or email info@eatdrinkmississippi.com for more information.

eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI Debbie Hansen Publisher/Editor

Debbie.Hansen@eatdrinkmississippi.com

Rebecca Fending Editor

Rebecca.Fending@eatdrinkmississippi.com

Vanessa Case Account Executive

FOLLOW US!

vanessa@eatdrinkmississippi.com

Paige McKay Contributing Writer & Advertising Associate Paige.McKay@eatdrinkmississippi.com

www.facebook.com/eatdrinkmississippi www.pinterest.com/eatdrinkms www.twitter.com/eatdrinkms www.linkedin.com/company/eat-drinkmississippi

Julian Brunt Lisa LaFontaine Bynum Divian Conner Melissa Cookston Susan Marquez Jay Reed Contributors

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10 • August/September 2020

© eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI All rights reserved. No portion of this publication may be reproduced or reprinted without written consent from the Publisher. Advertising rates available upon request. Subscriptions are $24 for one year. Subscribe online or make checks payable to: eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI P.O. Box 1663 Madison, MS 39130


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eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 11


{ fabulous foodie finds }

Revamping Vintage One of the stylistic trends of 2020 is the rise of vintage. From classic music to seemingly outdated furniture and tools, everything that may have seemed tacky 10 to 20 years ago is

experiencing a resurgence in the American marketplace. Here are a few vintage kitchen materials and styles that you can work into your modern home kitchen.

Cookie Press Talk about dated, this handy baking gadget from the 1950s is making an appearance in kitchens today. This manually operated tool makes pumping out dozens of shortbreads at a time a breeze. Not to mention the cleanup: you only have to clean the press itself as opposed to several small cookie cutters.

Dry Good Canisters Your grandmother may have had tin cans that denoted its contents in swirling cursive, but bringing these canisters back means you can put your own flare into them. Whether you opt for glass jars or decide to keep it classic with a modern spin be using colored ceramic jars, housing your flour, sugars and even salt in these canisters is a great way to organize your kitchen in an elegant way.

12 • August/September 2020


Breadbox For everyone who found their bread-making calling during their quarantine period this past spring, this one’s for you. Although this is the epitome of “vintage” when people think about their grandmother’s kitchen, this is the year to breathe new life into old accessories. A great way to revamp the classically kitschy feeling that breadboxes carry, try using a modernized one made to fit into today’s kitchens. Although breadboxes are a thing of the past, their usefulness hasn’t changed.

Ice Cream Sandwich Maker With summer coming to an end, the Mississippi heat is still going strong. This 1970s Tupperware staple may have had the right idea when it came to homemade desserts. Not only can you customize your ice cream sandwiches to be more than just the chocolate cookie with vanilla ice cream, but you can indulge even if you’re trying to live healthier. Making your own “nice-cream” out of coconut milk and fresh berries sandwiched between your choice of cookie is a healthy alternative for this classic snack now made at home.

Food Mill This useful tool has made its comeback thanks to modern popular recipes calling for it to breakdown tomatoes for made-from-scratch pizza sauce or even to make your own baby food. No matter your use for a food mill, it works to separate the unwanted skin and seeds of various fruits and vegetables that would otherwise be ground up with the final product if you used a food processor. Food mills still have their place in your modern kitchen.

eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 13


Taste of Magnolia a

Classic Never Goes Out of Style BY DIVIAN CONNER

S DIVIAN CONNER is a Mississippi mama of four ‘not so little’ little ones. Coming up with recipes, trying new ones, and feeding her crew of tweens and teens is her passion. Southern recipes, easy recipes, sorta hard recipes, but always delicious recipes is what you will find on her food blog, www.divianlconner.com. Now venturing into outdoor cooking over an open fire, Divian is fascinated with camp cooking and entertaining.

August/September 14 • APRIL/MAY 2020 2020

Since the beginning of what I can remember, I picture pasta salad being a staple at almost every Southern function and gathering that I attended. Potlucks at work, at church, family reunions and banquets—someone always came with a pan full of pasta salad covered in foil or tightly secured in plastic wrap. Long tables covered with cakes, pies, chicken spaghetti, meatballs, chicken, veggie trays and a ton of fresh fruit and cheese. I remember the time in vivid color and smell. As a kid, I loved grabbing a toothpick with a cube of cheese paired with a folded slice of ham on the end and piling it on my plate alongside potato salad, ribs, deviled eggs, tuna sandwiches and cantaloupe. Summer and the beginning of school was always a time of last-minute gatherings and gettogethers that signified unity. In this time, we need that sense of fellowship, family and friendship more than ever. In a world where it is obvious that we have had to make adjustments, one thing remains constant: the familiar world of delivering normalcy through meal and family time. Food has always been like music, it has a way of uniting us in joy, happiness and fun times. We hear our favorite song and we break out in line dances, couple up or we laugh with joy while the little ones dance off beat as we watch. Food has the same effect. It can remind us of our childhood, something our mom, grandmama, uncle, aunt or the family friend would make at every gathering. They were known for a certain dish. Famous. There are just some dishes, like songs, that are timeless, classic and expected. Just like music can soothe our souls in troubling times, certain dishes can be relaxing and filling. Pasta salad has always played a role at every event my family has had. My mom makes it for every summer holiday and until Labor Day. It is always a light, yet refreshing dish that sits alongside its heavier counterparts such as baked beans, corn on the cob and grilled meats. The thing is, you cannot go wrong with pasta salad. There are no rules, only taste. This year as the summer gets hotter, school gets closer and the fall is yet unknown, I break out the dishes that are soothing, familiar and comforting. I rely on them. I create them to help bring about normalcy. While the recipe may vary, the emotion and tradition remain the same. edm


PARMESAN BACON TOMATO PASTA SALAD WITH CRACKED PEPPER GREEK YOGURT DRESSING Ingredients:

Ingredients:

4 cups cooked pasta of your choice 2 tbsp olive oil 1 cup chopped fresh parsley ½ cup fresh lemon juice 2 ½ cups grated parmesan 2 cups chopped, cooked bacon (or turkey bacon) Sliced cherry tomatoes

2 cups plain Greek yogurt ¼ cup milk 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar 1 tsp olive oil 2 tbsp chopped parsley ⅔ cups of grated parmesan ½ tsp salt 2 tsp cracked ground black pepper

Toss cooked pasta in olive oil and add in parsley, lemon juice. Toss to coat evenly. Place in a bowl, top with parmesan, bacon and tomatoes.

Mix all ingredients and chill. Pour over pasta salad and serve.

eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 15


Savor the Season 16 • August/September 2020


BY LISA LAFONTAINE BYNUM

T

hough the calendar may claim that summer is winding down, it’s still plenty how. That means there is still time to savor the sweet taste of summer with these late-season fruits, veggies and herbs. Discover a fresh way to prepare catfish, liven up your next peach cobbler and discover a health alternative to preparing okra that doesn’t involve a frying pan. edm

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Roasted Okra

18 • August/September 2020


Mediterranean Catfish

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ROASTED OKRA - SERVES 4 1 pound fresh okra 1 1/2 tablespoons paprika                                           1 tablespoon onion powder                                  1 tablespoon garlic powder                                  1 tablespoons dried oregano                                          1 teaspoon dried thyme 1 teaspoon dried basil 1 teaspoon salt 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper 1-2 tablespoons olive oil 1. Trim the stems and ends off the okra. Set aside. 2. In a small bowl, combine all the seasonings. 3. Place the okra in a medium mixing bowl or gallon-size plastic freezer bag. 4. Drizzle the olive oil over the top of the okra, followed by the seasoning mixture. Stir until the okra is evenly coated. 5. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. 6. Spread the okra in an even layer on a foil-lined, greased baking sheet. Roast for 10-15 minutes until okra is tender and starting to brown in some places. 7. To grill, threw two skewers parallel to each other through each end of the okra. Grill over medium-hot coals for about seven minutes on each side until the okra is tender and the skin begins to char.

MEDITERRANEAN CATFISH - SERVES 4 4-6 catfish fillets, patted dry 1-2 tablespoons olive oil Salt and pepper 2 teaspoons dried oregano 2 cloves minced garlic 1 Roma tomato, diced 4 ounces sliced black olives artichoke hearts, chopped 4 ounces feta cheese 2 tablespoons chopped parsley, optional 1. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. 2. Season catfish with salt, pepper and oregano. 3. Once the oil is hot, add the catfish fillets. Cook for two minutes, then carefully flip and cook for an additional two minutes. 4. In a small mixing bowl, combine the minced garlic, diced tomatoes, black olives and artichoke hearts. Season with additional salt and pepper 5. Spoon the mixture over the top of the fish. Cover the

20 • August/September 2020

skillet and continue to sauté for two minutes until the topping is heated through. 6. Remove the pan from the heat. Sprinkle with crumbled feta and chopped parsley. BLUEBERRY PEACH COBBLER - SERVES 6 ½ cup unsalted butter 2 cups sliced peaches 1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries 2 cups white granulated sugar ¾ cup all-purpose flour 2 teaspoons baking powder 1/8 teaspoon salt ¾ cup milk Whipped cream or ice cream, optional 1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 2. Place the butter in the oven in an 8 x 8 baking dish until it is melted. 3. In a medium mixing bowl, combine the peaches and blueberries with one cup of the sugar. Set aside. 4. In a separate mixing bowl, combine the remaining cup of sugar, flour, baking powder, salt and milk. 5. Remove the melted butter from the oven. Pour the batter over the top of the butter. Do not stir. 6. Pour the fruit over the top of the batter. Again, do not stir. 7. Bake for one hour until the crust has risen to the top and is golden brown.


Blueberry Peach Cobbler

eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 21


Left: Kait and Quin, Kait’s daughter Right: Jessie and Marigold, the house cat and biscuit queen. 22 • August/September 2020


Get to Know the Greenhouse on Porter BY JULIAN BRUNT

In 2015, I was driving on Porter Avenue in Ocean Springs and saw a sign on the side of the road. It said “Coffee, Biscuits, Beer and Friends.” The sign was just too Southern to ignore, so I pulled over, parked and went inside. I had a feeling that this was going to be my kind of place and never did I have a more providential thought in my life. The Greenhouse on Porter is a very special place indeed. Writing about restaurants and food culture in Mississippi and the Deep South keeps me busy and constantly on the lookout for interesting places. I thought that the Greenhouse

might make a good story, but it turned out to be a lot more than a story I would write about once and then just file away. This place was funky and sells homemade biscuits, but not like the ones Mom used to make. I found that they offered a biscuit special every day, one sweet and one savory. There was a sweet potato biscuit with homemade pimento and cheese, a lox biscuit with pickled onion, capers and a house made spread called “fluff” and a handful of other biscuit variations. But there was more to this place than just biscuits.

Lox biscuit eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 23


I started coming on a regular basis, meeting new friends and attending events like trivia, bingo, poetry night and weekend music concerts. The Greenhouse slowly became my home away from home; a place to visit but also a place to bring the laptop and get some work done. It just seemed to get better and better. It is an old greenhouse, and when owners first found it, it was weed-filled, run down and in need of a lot of love. Jessie Zenor and Kait Sukiennik were not even looking for a business venture, but once they walked in the door the wheels began to turn. Kait had always wanted to learn how to make biscuits and Jessie was a coffee barista waiting to happen. You would have to see Kait and Jessie brainstorm to truly understand how these two connect. When they stand toe to toe and start throwing ideas at each other, magic happens, and that is the only way I know to describe the Greenhouse: pure magic. Jessie and Kait got the old greenhouse cleaned up, tables and chairs were bought, benches made. The counter in front of the kitchen came together, as did the menu, but most importantly was the concept. This was a place for the community to enjoy and everyone was going to be welcomed here. In fact, they had bumper stickers printed that said simply, “Everyone,” and they meant it. To this day, you will find not only people from around the country, but people from around the world and from every community as well. Success did not come quickly, but as the community began to realize what a jewel the Greenhouse was, business picked up. I can say in all honesty that I have met more interesting people at the Greenhouse than I have met any place in the world that I have visited. Perhaps the first interesting person I met there was a British doctor that had shipped an old BMW motorcycle to Venezuela and rode it to Alaska, stopping in Ocean Springs along the way. How about Cyan? A lovely young lady with a degree in genetics, who is also one of the most interesting and accomplished writers I have ever met. She has been published in magazines like the Harvard Review and calls herself a “freelance science communication specialist”. Zaba is a geologist who was working for the Gulf Coast Research Lab when she first walked in the door of the Greenhouse. I meet a Turkish couple there that was touring the USA on bicycles- not the touring kind, the Wal-Mart kind. Then I met the young lady who was studying Irish dance and I will never forget the time she gave an impromptu demonstration in the middle of the Greenhouse. What a delight! I would be remiss if I did not mention Captain Jack, a retired captain of ocean-going vessels that was once captured on the Niger River in Africa by terrorist and held captive. I could go on and on, but let me just say this: if you go to the Greenhouse, when the door opens and someone walks in, you better look up. There is no telling just who it might be. Let me give you an idea on what other people think about this profoundly special place. Corey Christy is the outreach coordinator at Maritime and Seafood Industry Museum in Biloxi. He is a regular at the Greenhouse as a patron and as a musician. Corey has been friends with Jessie and Kait since before the Greenhouse opened and has watched the dream materialize. He says, “It really does feel like a family. Every time you go you are going to meet someone you have 24 • August/September 2020

Symon French performing at the Greenhouse! never met before and the people you do meet are willing to share ideas and stories. The Greenhouse just feels like Ocean Springs, and no other place has the vibe or the diversity that this place does.” Mick Hartsfield, a U.S. Army veteran, Vietnam combat helicopter pilot, graphic artist and casino administrator said many of the same things about the Greenhouse as Corey. “The Greenhouse provides a sense of community, a diverse crowd that joins together that can be magic. There was a time when Symon French (a jazz singer from Mobile) played inside because of rain and it was as intimate a moment as I have had anywhere in the world, with a crowd that was as different as could be. The Greenhouse is the local coffee shop you have dreamed of and the hotspot nightclub where you want to be Friday night.” Scotty Leatherman is a world traveling tennis professional, historian of some note and a daily regular at the Greenhouse. He says, “From the beginning, Kait and Jessie were more interested in creating a community than just a coffee shop. They wanted a place where they could blend art and music and people in a way that could only be done in Ocean Springs.” Symone French, the afore mentioned jazz singer who performs often at the Greenhouse says, “There are so many things that makes the Greenhouse special, but the number one reason is simple: the people. From Jessie and Kait to the


patrons... the GH wouldn’t shine quite as bright without the wonderful people involved.” There is now also a Greenhouse location in Biloxi. There are a lot of ways I could end this story, but I can’t think of a better one than sharing with you the Greenhouse recipe for biscuits. edm

Greenhouse on Porter 404 Porter Ave, Ocean Springs (228) 238-5680

GREENHOUSE ON PORTER BISCUITS 2 cups all-purpose flour 1 tablespoon baking powder ¾ teaspoon salt ½ teaspoon black pepper ½ cup cold butter 1 cup full fat buttermilk 1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. In a large bowl, add and mix together all-purpose flour, baking powder, salt and black pepper.

2. Chop butter into half inch cubes. Using your fingers, squish the butter into the flour mixture until the largest pieces are about the size of peas. Stir in buttermilk, mixing only until the dough comes together. Be careful not to over work the biscuit dough. 3. Dump dough onto a floured surface and roughly shape into a square about an inch thick. Cut into nine pieces. 4. Place on a parchment lined pan and bake until golden, about 10 minutes. Serve with any topping you dream up.

Sweet potato biscuit and homemade strawberry jam eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 25


MISTLETOE MARKETPLACE ·

NOVEMBER 4-7, 2020

PRESENTED BY THE JUNIOR LEAGUE OF JACKSON MISSISSIPPI TRADE MART | JACKSON, MS WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 4 FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 6

ENCHANTED WINTER WONDERLAND MASQUERADE BALL PREVIEW GALA | 7:00 - 11:00 p.m. Presented by The Junior League of Jackson Musical Entertainment by the Party Jammers

7:00 p.m. | Legacy of Wonder Cheers to 40 years of Mistletoe Marketplace

7:00 - 9:00 p.m. | Walk the Red Carpet Presented by C Spire

MIMOSAS & MISTLETEAUX MARKETPLACE JAZZ BRUNCH | 8:00 - 11:00 a.m. Presented by Regions Musical Entertainment by David Keary

LET IT SNOW, LET IT GLOW, LET IT SNOW TWEEN FASHION SHOW | 4:30 - 6:00 p.m. Presented by University of Mississippi Medical Center

7:00 - 11:00 p.m. | Shopping Hours 7:00 - 10:00 p.m. | Silent & Premier Auctions 9:00 p.m. | Live Auction 7:00 - 10:00 p.m. | Unwrap the Wonder

FEELIN’ FROSTY FRIDAY NIGHT EVENT | 8:00 - 11:00 p.m.

Mistletoe Marketplace 2020 Present Pick with gifts from Lee Michaels Fine Jewelry

SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 7

THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 5

YULETIDE TRADITIONS MISTLETOE MORNING | 8:00 - 11:00 a.m.

Presented by Southern Beverage Co., Inc. Musical Entertainment by Bag of Donuts

SNOW MUCH FUN! CHILDREN’S EVENT | 9:30 - 11:00 a.m. Presented by Ergon

Presented by Trustmark Musical Entertainment by Kerry Thomas & the Raphael Semmes Trio

SNOW FLURRIES & SMILES SANTA SNAPS 11:30 a.m. - 5:30 p.m.

BELIEVE IN THE WONDER BAPTIST LUNCHEON & STYLE SHOW 11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.

SPIRITS OF THE SEASONS

Featuring Tim Tebow Presented by Mississippi Baptist Medical Center Fashions by Renaissance at Colony Park

FLUTES & FLURRIES GIRLS’ NIGHT OUT | 6:30 - 8:30 p.m. Presented by Visit Mississippi Tickets on sale September 1, 2020. For more information on our special event offerings, virtual offerings, shopping hours, COVID-19 protocols, or to order tickets, please visit mistletoemarketplace.com or call 1.888.324.0027.

MISTLETOE SPIRITS BAR Thursday, November 5 | 11:00 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. Friday, November 6 | 11:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m. Saturday, November 7 | 11:00 a.m. - 5:30 p.m.

GENERAL SHOPPING HOURS THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 5 | 11:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m. 3:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m. | 6:30 p.m. - 9:30 p.m. FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 6 | 11:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m. 3:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m. | 6:30 p.m. - 9:30 p.m. SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 7 | 8:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. 11:30 p.m. - 2:30 p.m. | 3:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.

in-person or virtual option

26 • August/September 2020


Dive into Mediterranean Cuisine BY LOREN DURAN

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hakshuka is a traditional Mediterranean dish made of eggs poached in a sauce of tomatoes, olive oil, peppers, onion and garlic, and commonly spiced with cumin, paprika, cayenne pepper and nutmeg. Turkish Airlines’ award winning Flying Chefs have put together a step by step video on how to make the delicacy in under 30 minutes. True to its heritage as an 19th Century Sultan’s residence, TUGRA MASH CUCUMBER SALAD

Ciragan Palace Kempinski is a leader in reviving historic Ottoman fare for modern taste buds. Two of the hotel’s famous salad recipes – Tugra Mash Cucumber Salad and Avocado Salad – are easy to prepare at home. With a refreshing taste of Istanbul’s summer flavors and traditional ingredients, these light and healthy dishes will make you dream of palace gardens and sunlit strolls along the Bosporus. edm AVOCADO SALAD

500 g. (17.6 Oz.) young cucumbers 1 pt. (2 cups) plain clotted yogurt 200 g. (7.1 Oz.) fresh pomegranate seeds 5 cl. (1.7 fl. Oz.) sour pomegranate juice 50 g. (1.8 Oz.) whole pistachios, shelled 50 ml. (1.7 fl. Oz.) extra virgin olive oil 10 fresh mint leaves 1 clove garlic, mashed (optional) Salt and pepper to taste

For salad: 200 g. (7.1 Oz.) peeled avocado 3 cherry tomatoes 75 g. (2.6 Oz.) canned tuna 10 g. (0.4 Oz.) bean sprouts 5 g. (0.2 Oz.) fresh coriander 5 g. (0.2 Oz.) pitted kalamata olives 10 g. (0.4 Oz.) baby cucumber 15 g. (0.5 Oz.) Antalya mixed greens

1. Mix the clotted yogurt, salt and black pepper in a bowl. 2. Slice and mash the young cucumbers until there are no shreds remaining. 3. Mix the mashed cucumber and the yogurt. 4. Scoop the mixture onto a serving plate. Sprinkle pomegranate seeds, pistachios and mint leaves. 5. Gently drizzle with olive oil and pomegranate juice to taste. Serve salad chilled.

For cranberry dressing: 20 g. (0.7 Oz.) pureed cranberry 1 lemon, juiced 15 g. (0.5 Oz.) olive oil 10 g. (0.4 Oz.) dried cranberries Salt and pepper to taste 1. Slice the avocado in half. Peel and remove seed. 2. Slice one half of the avocado into smaller cubes, roughly 1.8 Oz. each, and marinade with a little lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Place at bottom of serving plate. 3. Position the other half of the avocado on top of these marinated cubes. 4. Thinly slice or julienne the cucumbers. In a separate bowl, mix the sliced cucumber, mixed greens, cherry tomatoes, bean sprouts, olives and coriander leaves. Marinade with olive oil. 5. Place this mixed salad on top of the avocado in the serving plate. 6. Blend the pureed cranberry, lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper until lightly viscous. Sprinkle the dried cranberries onto the salad and finish by drizzling the cranberry dressing on top. Serve salad chilled.

Image from Spirited Table eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 27


{ fresh from the farm }

Welcome Home Beef BY JAY REED

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t was early February when Welcome Home Beef opened its doors in Starkville. Barely a month later, the country was in full-fledged pandemic mode. Restaurants were either closing or transitioning to curbside, and locals who might normally be eating out several times a week were barely leaving their homes. Thankfully, buying food was declared essential. And for food lovers who found themselves with lots of extra time while working (or not) from home, Starkville’s new “beef boutique” was there to help. That’s not their official marketing moniker, but it fits. A boutique is defined as a small specialized business, and for the Sanders family - siblings Scott, Leslie, Will and mom Linda that business is beef. One day, says Scott Sanders, they want to be a “meat boutique.” They’ve already added pork from the other end of University Drive at Mississippi State, and hope to expand their options even further in the coming months. But the beef is the star, with seventeen different cuts of steak, four kinds of roasts, ground beef, brisket, even tongue and cheek. The Sanders family has been in the cattle business for a long time. More than once, David Sanders (the patriarch of the family) had considered the idea of opening a retail store to sell beef. After he passed away in early 2019, his kids took over the cattle sales business. Leslie and Will handle much of the retail side, while Scott deals with the cows. Scott is also an educator.

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eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 29


He can get as deep in the details as you want when talking about cuts of beef, factors in raising cattle, even economics and those are key things to know for a niche business like this. He points out two primary components that are required to have good quality beef: marbling and some age. In the midst of all that knowledge, however, it’s really all about the taste. And that’s what it’s all about for return customers, too. One gentleman came back in the store raving about a roast, saying, “I haven’t had a roast like that since the 70s.” The Sanders will tell you their goal is not necessarily to make the beef taste “better,” but to make it taste like it did 30 years ago. How did that happen? It wasn’t a flux capacitor in a DeLorean; it was a trip to Nebraska. Scott was there looking for new places to feed cattle and happened upon a farmer whose cows seemed different. It was July and the cattle were playful, had clarity in their eyes and just looked natural. He asked what made them so unique, and the farmer told him they didn’t allow hormones in his 30 • August/September 2020

feed yard. In fact, most of the feed was grown within a mile of where they were fed. Scott said, “I bet your meat is just fantastic,” and the farmer said, “Let’s go to the house and get some.” And they did. Scott went back to his hotel with sirloins and burgers taken from the freezer and cooked them on a burner. Everything was delicious. He called home and said, “I found our new thing.” Back in Starkville, the family sat down and came up with a plan: buy the cattle here in the south, feed them in Nebraska, get them processed and sell the beef here. One option would have been to supply the common retail cuts of beef: rib eyes, filets, roasts and burgers. But that’s not what they wanted to be. The real goal was to be a vertically integrated source of beef and know everyone involved in the process; a longer process than the average steak aficionado might realize. Plus, there are so many other great cuts that don’t get the same press as, say, a filet mignon. Most eaters know about New York strips, rump roasts, briskets, maybe even


London broil. For many, however, the words picanha, shoulder clod, and teres major seem like a foreign language. When it comes to favorites, Scott likes the diversity of the hanger steak: “It’s delicious, it’s tender, it’s fun to cook. You can put it on a taco, you can throw it on the grill and eat it with a baked potato, you can make beef tips out of it - there’s a lot of different things.” Leslie admitted that she was very traditional. “It used to be a filet, but now it’s a ribeye - it really is. They just have a great taste.” Mark Coblentz, Starkville’s teen celebrity chef, has travelled from coast to coast and ranks the steaks from Welcome Home Beef up there with the best: “They have a beefy flavor that I like to highlight, not hide with a marinade.” Coblentz is also a fan of the ground beef, noting that the burgers taste like steak. That’s because they are. Scott explained that a higher than average percentage of the ground beef they sell is from those 17 cuts of steak from the whole cow, not just the usual lean trimmings. That also reduces shrinkage. “When you take our eight-ounce patties and throw them on that skillet, when they’re done, they’re still bigger than that bun you’re going to put them on.” Kinzie Brown and her family were new to Starkville, arriving shortly before things went viral, at about the same time as Welcome Home Beef ’s grand opening. Nice dinners at home were taking the place of meals out, and the grown-ups often enjoyed filet mignon. But the kids kept saying, “Can I have a bite?” The Sanders suggested the bistro filet for the kids: similar but less expensive. Little did they know that all the Browns would end up eating that cut. Kinzie said, “The bistro filets were just as tender, just as flavorful - buttery, and so good, we love it.” Welcome Home Beef has become their one stop meat shop. Chances are good that it will become the same for many. Contact Info: https://welcomehomebeef.commentsold. com/store 329 University Dr. Starkville, MS 37521 662-769-1412 Twitter: @beefhome Instagram/Facebook: @welcomehomebeef edm

eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 31


Walmart Foundation Funding Fuels New Food Prescription Program UM professors develop initiative to address food insecurity, food desert issues for Mississippians BY SHEA STEWART

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hree University of Mississippi professors are recipients of a nearly half-million-dollar grant from the Walmart Foundation that will create a food prescription program to improve access to fresh food for Mississippians. The $442,154 grant from the Walmart Foundation will fund a program that is expected to improve access to fresh fruits and vegetables and increase food security and food access for citizens of Charleston in Tallahatchie County. Titled “Hunger in Rural communities (HUNGeR): Integrating health and food systems for a sustainable food prescription approach,” the program is intended to improve the health outcomes of the entire household, as well as identify processes for spreading these kinds of programs to other communities and keeping them going once they are started. The three professors are Anne Cafer, Assistant Professor of Sociology, Meagen Rosenthal, Assistant Professor of Pharmacy Administration, both from the Oxford campus, and Seena Haines, Chair and Professor of Pharmacy Practice at the UM Medical Center.

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“By supporting research, learning and outreach on food insecurity, the Walmart Foundation’s generous grant aligns with the University of Mississippi’s dedication to fostering health and well-being in our region, nation and world,” Chancellor Glenn Boyce said. “We’re grateful to the Walmart Foundation for enabling the development of replicable, scalable interventions and programs. The program will take a holistic approach in providing households who lack regular access to healthy foods with fresh fruits and vegetables and nutrition counseling, as well as education on how to store, prepare and cook these items. “This program is the culmination of some incredibly innovative and interdisciplinary work taking place at the University of Mississippi,” Cafer said. “The faculty, staff and community partners involved have spent two years working across a number of disciplinary and institutional boundaries to pilot and ultimately build a fundable program to address health at the nexus of food access and nutrition.” The program is one of the first hosted by the Community First Research Center for Wellbeing and Creative Achievement, a new UM center with the mission of empowering Mississippi communities – from counties and cities to groups of citizens – to take charge of their community development, policy change and resilience building by using data and the arts. The program is partnering with the James C. Kennedy Wellness Center in Charleston. Part of the Tallahatchie General Hospital Organization, the center, which opened in 2016, empowers the local community to lead healthy and happy lives through health and wellness programs, indoor and outdoor exercise options, and nutrition and self-care services. “I am thrilled about the Food Rx Project and believe it will bring much-needed access to fresh produce and increased awareness of good nutrition practices to families in the Charleston area and, in turn, will improve health outcomes, food security and well-being,” said Catherine Moring, the center’s executive director. Food insecurity is the lack of reliable access to affordable, nutritious food. A high rate of food insecurity makes unhealthy choices easy, accessible and affordable. The food insecurity rate is 19.2 percent in Tallahatchie


County, with nearly 2,800 food-insecure people, according to Feeding America’s Map the Meal Gap project. In Mississippi, an estimated 573,600 people are food insecure, about one in five Mississippians. “I am excited that our program has worked with the community to build upon the solid foundation of work that is ongoing in Charleston and Tallahatchie County,” Rosenthal said. “I am also very hopeful that the evaluation of this program will provide insights into how it could be sustained over the long term. “The research tells us that food insecurity is a persistent problem that isn’t solved by single interventions, but one that requires a systematic solution. This program will be a step in that direction.” Portions of Tallahatchie County also are food deserts (areas where it is difficult to buy affordable or good-quality fresh food) where a significant number of residents are more than 1 mile (urban) or 10 miles (rural) from the nearest supermarket, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Economic Research Service. Through the program, enrolled patients will be eligible to pick up a box of fruits and vegetables every two weeks for up to 24 months. The boxes will include recipes. Enrollees also will receive medical nutrition therapy and, every six months, receive complimentary health risk assessments. The program will provide about 45,000 meals for 200 people for two years with the goals of improving objective health measures, restyling consumption patterns of fruits and vegetables, changing the knowledge of healthy food choices, and increasing the knowledge of families to prepare healthy food in a way that is appealing, easy and affordable. “This program will provide holistic care promoting the consumption of nutrient-dense foods by addressing barriers to food access, empowering patients to make healthier choices – and feeling confident about what these food choices are – and recommending medical nutrition therapy for those with health conditions directly related to food choices,” Haines said. The program also will address three critical research areas: addressing the patient referral system to a food prescription program, engaging the scarcity of long-term clinical outcomes data involving health metrics, and looking at the failure to develop mechanisms for sustaining these programs without a consistent infusion of grant funding. “Access to healthy food builds the foundation for good health in communities,” said Eileen Hyde, director of sustainable food systems and food access for Walmart.org. “Our goal is to improve people’s ability to more consistently consume nutritious food. “That involves connecting people to the food they need as well as building confidence in their choices. We’re excited to support and learn from the University of Mississippi’s innovative program that will help Mississippians improve their health.” The three professors are team leaders of the university’s Community Wellbeing Flagship Constellation. The Flagship Constellations initiative was unveiled in November 2017 as a collaborative effort among faculty, staff and students from the university’s Oxford and Medical Center campuses to explore and solve complex issues through the diversity of ideas. The initiative includes multidisciplinary teams working to find solutions to grand challenges in the areas of brain wellness, community well-being and disaster resilience. About Philanthropy at Walmart Walmart.org represents the philanthropic efforts of Walmart and the Walmart Foundation. By leaning in where the business has unique strengths, Walmart. org works to tackle key social issues and collaborate with others to spark longlasting systemic change. Walmart.org is helping people live better by supporting programs that work to accelerate upward job mobility for frontline workers, address hunger and make healthier, more sustainably-grown food a reality, and build strong communities where Walmart operates. To learn more, visit walmart. org or find us on Twitter @walmartorg. edm

Seena Haines

Anne Cafer

Meagan Rosenthal eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 33


French Hermit Oyster Co. BY SUSAN MARQUEZ

Mike and Tommy.

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he most memorable products are those with a great backstory. A fascinating story is the inspiration for the name of French Hermit Oyster Company in Biloxi. During the 1920s, a Frenchman named Jean Guilhot settled on Deer Island, about four and a half miles off Biloxi’s coast in the Gulf of Mexico. A barber by trade, he had traveled all around the United States before deciding Deer Island would be his stopping place. He became known as the “Hermit of Deer Island,” and he harvested oysters which he sold to residents of Biloxi. Tourist boats that came to the island brought groceries and the newspaper for Guilhot, who would row out to serenade tourists with French folk songs. Anita Arguellas co-owns French Hermit Oyster Company with her husband, Mike. “When we were trying to come up with a name for the company Mike remembered the legend of the hermit of Deer Island,” says Anita. “We loved the name and the story behind it.” According to Anita, Mike is an “oyster evangelist.” The couple met in 1991 when she was living in Memphis. “He would come up to Memphis from the Coast with a sack of oysters, which is about 300 wild oysters,” Anita explains. “He’d open up the tailgate of his truck and share oysters with anybody who wanted them. He said oysters were a friendmaking tool, and he would engage people with information about oysters, their history, along with science and stories.” Some of it was true, but some was made up for entertainment purposes. Either way, Mike introduced a lot of people to raw oysters from the Mississippi Gulf. Mike harvested his oysters by ponging, which is scraping the bottom of the Gulf with an oyster rake to dislodge them. “That’s a hard way to do it,” Anita says. “It involves a lot of chest work.” The couple eventually moved from Memphis to the Coast. “Mike is originally from Biloxi, and he wanted to be back near the water. He had an opportunity to build piers

34 • August/September 2020

Floating cages on Deer Island. and boathouses for the Department of Marine Resources (DMR), a division of the Mississippi Development Authority.” The DMR asked Mike about building the infrastructure for an oyster farm off the Coast. They were giving classes about aquaculture, and Mike said he’d like to take the class, but only if it wouldn’t preclude someone else from taking it. “He came home and told me about it and I said I’d like to take the class, too!” So, Anita and Mike both took a class to learn about off-bottom oyster aquaculture. There were 25 individuals and couples who took the training. “We made all kinds of new friends who have a common love of the water and harvesting oysters,” Anita says. “It’s a real community.” The proposed site for the oyster farm on the Gulf coast was Henderson Point, between Bay St. Louis and Pass Christian. “The residents there didn’t want it,” recalls Anita. “They didn’t want to look out into the Gulf and see floating oyster cages, so they lawyered up. Luckily, there was ten years’ worth of data about the area just south of Deer Island.” While it’s a fourand-a-half-mile boat ride for the Arguellas, and they can’t see their cages without physically going into the Gulf, they are making it work. “We can’t go onto Deer Island at all because it is protected,” says Anita. “We have to do all the work from the water.” Realizing power in numbers, Mike and Anita approached other oyster farmers about forming a coop of sorts. “We invited the farmers to sell their oysters under the French Hermit brand. That way, if there’s a problem with someone’s boat, the oysters will still be available from another farmer. That keeps a steady supply of oysters going to our customers.” One of those customers is Hunter Evans, chef at Elvie’s Restaurant in Jackson. “We took Hunter and his business partner, Cody McCain, out on the boat to see the oyster farm,” Anita says. Hunter has created some very innovative dishes with the French Hermit oysters. Chef Austin Sumerall


at White Pillars in Biloxi was also an early adopter. “He helped me to create a flavor profile for the oysters, and he likes the concept of aquaculture in order to maintain consistency.” The endeavor hasn’t been without its challenges. “The first year, which was last year, I traveled to Jackson and Oxford to meet with chefs about the oysters. I was taking orders and all was going well, and right before our first harvest, the Corps of Engineers opened the Bonne Carrie Spillway to prevent flooding in New Orleans. That released massive amounts of fresh water into the Gulf, which killed the oysters. “We were able to pull some of the oysters and put them in cages in Bayou la Batre,” Anita says. It takes nine to ten months, from “seed to sale,” the time needed to grow an edible oyster in the waters off the Mississippi Gulf coast. In other parts of the country, it takes longer. In the northeast, it takes two to three years and in Nova Scotia it takes three years. Just as production at French Hermit was ramping up again, along with sales, restaurants closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. “We are starting to see more sales again, so we’re not giving up hope,” she says. The oyster farming life is a good one for the Arguellas. “Most of the people who do this have other jobs as well.” Anita works at the University of Mississippi’s Gulf Coast Research

Laboratory Marine Education Center. “Oyster farming is something we do in the afternoons and on weekends.” The Arguellas feel that what they are doing is important. “We love off-bottom aquaculture and being out on the water. We are still relatively young, and being around all the younger oyster Anita with an oyster. farmers helps keep us young. We enjoy it so much. And what we are doing is important – we are preserving the oyster culture on the Gulf coast.” edm

Left- Chef Austin Sumrall of White Pillars, Biloxi/Center - Cody of Elvies/Right - Chef Hunter Evans of Elvies, Jackson eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 35


36 • August/September 2020


Primos Caramel Icing and Cheese Straws BY SUSAN MARQUEZ

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hat does caramel icing and furniture shopping have in common? Everything, when it comes to the deep caramel color of Primos’ caramel icing. A woman once took a tub of the icing into a local furniture store, wanting a leather recliner for her husband in that same rich color. Primos Café has long been an institution in the Jackson area. Originally opened by Angelo “Pop” Primos, a Greek immigrant baker, in the 1920s. Today, Pop’s grandson, Don Primos, owns the restaurants, now located in Madison, Ridgeland and Flowood, maintaining the standard of excellence created his grandfather. One of the favorites at Primos Café throughout the years has been their delicious caramel cake. “My mother, Mary Ann, would visit her college roommate’s family, the Gammons, in Como, Mississippi,” says Don. “Mrs. Gammon always served her fabulous caramel cake. My mother mastered the art of Mrs. Gammon’s cake and made it for us often. My father wanted to start serving slices of layered cakes at Primos Northgate in Jackson. Around 1983, my mother and my wife, Virginia, would make six or seven different layer cakes at home, one at a time, and bring them to Northgate to sell.” Eventually, the restaurant hired another baker at Northgate and “the girls” were off the hook. “The caramel cake has always been a favorite,” says Don. “The baker, Joann Grayson, started making one cake at a time, then three at a time and eventually began producing the distinctive caramel icing in bulk. Our recipe now is the result of much tweaking. It is the perfect ‘brownness,’ a deep caramel color that’s just before being overcooked. It’s always creamy and never too sugary or grainy. Our icing is made in-house, with pure butter, cream and love – no substitutes!” Primos began selling the icing online though the Primos’ online Bake Shop in November 2016. “People use it to ice cupcakes, for caramel apples, as a fruit dip, with ice cream or even as a snack on its own.” Another popular product Primos sells online is cheese straws. “We even have cheese bursts, which are equally delicious and beautiful on cheese platters,” says Don. The cheese straws became popular in 1970, when Don’s father, Kenneth Primos, was looking for a cheese straw he could use for parties and receptions held at Northgate’s banquet facilities. “He researched and developed our recipe,” says Don. “Customers began asking

for them, so he began selling them in the Primos Deli.” The cheese straws were originally made using Wearever aluminum cookie guns. “We used those for years, and every time one broke, my dad would fix it, creating parts when needed,” says Don. “He did that until he could no longer fix the cookie guns, and he was unable to replace them.” When Primos opened the Flowood location on Lakeland Drive, the demand for cheese straws grew and Don sourced an extruder to create the cheese straws using the same recipe. The popular starburst-shaped cheese bursts were added at that time, providing a perfect bite-sized version of the spicy original cheese straws. A perfect addition to any party table, the cheese straws look pretty while providing a satisfying crunch and touch of spice. Primos recommends heating them in a 350 degree oven for five to ten minutes before serving for maximum enjoyment. Don says approximately 1,800 pounds of the cheese straws and cheese bursts are sold each December. “They have become a staple at holiday parties and they have become a very welcomed gift.” The caramel icing as well as the cheese straws and cheese bursts are made by Primos employees at the restaurant’s central bakery, located behind the Primos Café on Lakeland Drive. The products are shipped nationwide through primosbakeshop. com. edm eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 37


Destin Harbor

Emerald Coast 38 • August/September 2020


Emerald Coast Trip: Fun, Sun and Interesting Food Finds BY KARA KIMBROUGH

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he Mississippi Gulf Coast is one of my favorite travel destinations. But, every now and then I venture further east to enjoy other Gulf of Mexico beaches. A few days with friends at the Hilton Sandestin at Miramar Beach near Destin, FL, an area of northwest Florida famed for its sugarwhite sands and emerald-hued waters, was the perfect summer starter. Unbelievably fresh, creative and delicious food finds took the trip to a new hemisphere. Reality was left behind as we explored the Emerald Coast, named for its light green water color interspersed with stripes of brilliant blue. Intermingled with fun were fresh seafood meals and sandwiches, innovative appetizers and creative desserts. Visiting a place called “Stinky’s” in such a beautiful place almost seemed sacrilegious. However, it came highly recommended by a Hattiesburg friend so we decided to give it a try. Located in Santa Rosa Beach on Florida’s famous Highway 30A, Stinky’s is a lively casual-style restaurant. The response to Stinky’s wedge salad topped with crispy bacon, sliced tomatoes, onions and the restaurant’s delicious Green Goddess dressing, followed by fried shrimp, catfish and other seafood accompaniments confirmed we made the right dining decision. Further exploration of 30A brought glimpses of Florida’s beaches, rare dune lakes, plenty of shopping and opportunities for water view dining. Intrigued after learning Seaside’s “Bud & Alley’s” was named for a dog and a cat, we selected it from among a group of area restaurants and food trucks. Seated at a wooden table overlooking brilliant water, I sampled one of the best shrimp po’boys of my life. Lightly seasoned and breaded shrimp were nestled on a bed of the tastiest coleslaw I’d ever tasted. The chef kindly shared his secret of adding sugar and onion and garlic powder to what I’m assuming is a homemade mayo base with perhaps a dash of Greek yogurt. It’s definitely a recipe I’ll attempt to recreate. Other food highlights were gelato at roadside stands, lobster rolls at Seaside’s Shrimp Shack and chicken and waffles at Pickles, also in the Seaside area. Our culinary highlight was a visit to The Vue on 30A along Santa Rosa Beach. I wasn’t surprised to learn the picturesque restaurant was named “Best Waterfront Dining” by “Travel and Leisure Magazine”. Postcard-worthy views of the water and if you dine in the evening, amazing sunsets, from either its glassfronted dining areas or beachfront patios, are mesmerizing. However, arrival of our dinner almost made me forget the views. Chef Isley Whyte has added sophisticated Southern twists with a Jamaican flair to regular seafood and other dishes. Accustomed to the normal cream cheese-centric appetizer, we didn’t expect a light, tasty version of spinach and artichoke dish. Unbelievably, the vegetable flavor was actually present. I’d previously sampled lobster tails, but Chef Whyte’s crab-stuffed version was amazingly different. Two Maine lobster tails are topped with crab meat, smoked Gouda cheese, cream and panko breadcrumbs. It was an unforgettable meal topped off with a peach and mango cobbler with a crust so light and delicate it literally melted with each bite. The Vue has a seafood-centric menu, but there’s no scarcity of steaks. Others in our group enjoyed filet mignon topped with a red wine chorizo demi glaze and rosemary fingerling potatoes. On the final morning of our trip, we braved 80-degree heat to wait in line outside at Destin’s famous The Donut Hole. Pancakes, waffles, omelets and biscuits are just a few of the breakfast offerings at this old-school diner and bake shop. But it’s the 30-plus flavors of homemade doughnuts that have residents and tourists lining up all day. And yes, a box of 12 different flavors accompanied me home to Mississippi. edm

eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 39


Mississippi & Beyond Feature: Chef Alex Eaton BY SUSAN MARQUEZ

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or many, it’s necessary to leave home in order to truly appreciate it. That’s true for Alex Eaton, chef and coowner of The Manship Wood Fired Kitchen in Jackson. Alex grew up in Jackson, and when it was time to go to college, all his friends were heading to Ole Miss. “I wanted to do something different,” he says, “so I went to Mississippi State where I majored in construction management.” After his junior year, he went to Boulder, Colorado, to try to figure out what he wanted to do with his life. That began a several-year journey that eventually led him back to Jackson. “I was young and didn’t have any real obligations,” recalls Alex. “I spent my weekends going to concerts, but during the week, I helped a guy open a pizzeria in Boulder. I did everything, including cleaning ovens, to help get the place going.” It was during that time that Alex decided he’d like to someday open his own small business. When he returned to college, he changed his major to marketing. After graduation, he decided to attend culinary

40 • August/September 2020

school at Johnson and Wales University in North Carolina. “There are other campuses I could have chosen, from Miami to Rhode Island to Denver. I ruled out Miami and Denver, but decided I wanted to stay in the south, so I chose the Charlotte campus.” After getting settled in at the school, Alex and his dad went to eat at a fine dining restaurant in Charlotte called Rooster’s Wood Fired Kitchen. “My dad ordered the duck confit and between bites he told me I really needed to learn how to make that dish.” Alex ended up working at the restaurant. “I went to culinary school from 5 am to 2 pm, and worked at Rooster’s from 3 pm to 11 pm. It was grueling, but I learned so much during that time.” Alex recalls a professor at school who told him that if someone has a good attitude, he could teach them to cook. And Alex had a good attitude. “I am fortunate that I had a good upbringing with parents who were always encouraging me.” Alex worked with local farmers and learned to cook the right


way. “I learned to serve food at its seasonal peak. Tomatoes are ripe in the summer, so that’s when you serve them in a variety of dishes.” With the 2008 financial collapse, Alex witnessed the successful restaurant begin to suffer and dry up. “They had to tighten the reigns to make it through.” Little did he know that experience would play out for him again in his future. Alex and his wife, who is from the Mississippi Gulf Coast, decided it was time to move closer to home. He knew there was a huge culinary scene in New Orleans, so he did some research on some of the most popular chefs. “I looked at John Besh and Donald Link, and decided to try out for Domenica Restaurant, owned by Besh and Israeli-born chef Alon Shia. Shia is the one who offered me the job,” says Alex. “I was a kid who flew in from North Carolina, so he knew I was serious. I have to admit, I was star-struck around John Besh. In hindsight, I believe I sold myself short, because I imagined at the time that everyone there had to be better than me. The truth is, I was already very skilled in the kitchen.” At Dominica, Alex learned to make pizzas. “It was a tough job. That, combined with kids from all over the country who were trying to build a resume made it very competitive. Shia struggled with labor and food costs, which was also a lesson for Alex, who began to look around to see what other opportunities may be available in New Orleans. “I got in with the Brennan group and worked at Mr. B’s Bistro, which was my first taste of New Orleans life. It was there that I figured out how to keep employees.” When Jackson restauranteur Bill Latham was opening Table 100 in Flowood, he talked with Alex about coming to work. Amerigo’s, another of Bill Latham’s restaurants, was one of Alex’s favorites while growing up in Jackson. At Table 100, Alex attended every manager’s meeting and took notes. “There was a German chef there, Chef Mike, who was awesome at catering. He knew how to cut costs and make money. He ran his kitchen like a business. Bill was also great to train with.” Alex negotiated a good salary as chef de cuisine. “By that time, I had learned not to sell myself short.” Alex’s next chapter began when he was introduced to

Steven O’Neal. “We had a lot of mutual friends. Steven wanted to open a restaurant, and he wanted me to join him in the venture. I gave Bill a six-month notice. I raised half the capital needed to open The Manship, and made many of the construction decisions. We started out of the gate strong. We were the new kid on the block in Jackson’s restaurant scene and we had a lot to prove.” Christian Rodriguez, who had opened the P.F. Chang’s in Ridgeland, joined the team. “Christian got different kinds of workers. I really trusted him. He made a lot of changes, which made things more efficient in the kitchen and cooler. That’s when our catering began to pick up.” Alex’s work at The Manship drew much notice, and many awards followed, included being crowned King of American Seafood in 2016 and nominated for a James Beard award in 2019. He was getting calls from developers about putting in restaurants in the District in Jackson and the Township in Ridgeland. But when Highland Village called, Alex felt that was the right time to roll out his Mediterranean counter serve concept. “My mom is full-blooded Lebanese, which was my inspiration.” He got his business plan together and opened Aplos. In the spring, tragedy struck The Manship when a fire broke out in the kitchen. While the cleanup and restoration of the restaurant was in process, Aplos became the focus. “We were taking care of our employees and our business.” Then the COVID-19 pandemic hit, and Alex had to get creative. “We did a fun pop-up concept at Manship called Smoke Show that played off the fire we had. We did carryout and even set up in neighborhoods in the area for people to pick up food to eat at home.” Alex also did a series of cooking demonstrations on YouTube. Their Manship Provisions shop online began selling items from local vendors. “We have always made it a point to utilize fresh, locally produced ingredients, and now we are offering those same ingredients to our customers, which in turn helps the vendors. All of the offerings are available to order through our website. It’s a win-win.” What Alex has learned in his years in the restaurant business is that if you treat people well from the start, it will always pay off. “We have always lived within our means, so scaling back during the pandemic has not been that hard. My dad was an oil man, so we learned early on when oil prices were up, we ate a different cut of meat than we did when oil prices were down. But we never went hungry.” edm

eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 41


{ from the bookshelf }

The Campfire Cookbook By Viola Lex and Nico Stanitzok

BY REBECCA FENDING

E

arly fall is peak time for camping and enjoying outdoors. Whether you’re trying to squeeze in one last camping trip before the kids go back to school or you just simply want to enjoy the last of the summer warmth, camping is the best and easiest way to get away for a weekend. But what can you make for your meals if you’re tired of hot dogs and smores and ready for a gourmet outdoor dinner? Within “The Campfire Cookbook” by outdoor and camping enthusiast Viola Lex and Chef Nico Stanitzok, you can find 80 unique and imaginative meals for cooking outdoors. While the book contains campfire classics such as barbecued meats and kebabs, Viola and Chef Nico have also curated a collection of unique, borderline gourmet, meals you can make outdoors. This cookbook was designed for a wide range of campers—from those who brave the deep wilderness to those who prefer a “luxury” style of camping (known as “glamping”). No matter where you fall, you can find a tasty and specifically outdoor dinner for you and your company. The authors include a small section at the beginning of the cookbook detailing the best kitchen materials to have while camping. Resealable bags are a must, along with the anticipated aluminum foil; a godsend when it comes to trying to cook anything over an open fire. They also explain ideal spice combinations to keep onboard in order to avoid tasteless and under seasoned dishes while cooking outdoors. Whether you’re camping

42 • August/September 2020

or just looking to upgrade dinner in your home kitchen, Lex and Stanitzok provide recipes for homemade condiments. From a sweet and spicy barbecue sauce to banana ketchup (yes, banana-based condiment that works especially well with chicken dishes), handmade and homemade cannot be beat. Something about steaks and the outdoors just feels right. And what better way to prepare and serve a slab of meat than over a bed of fresh, seasonal veggies? Lex and Stanitzok include a recipe for Stuffed Steaks on a Ratatouille and Carrot Base, a satisfyingly fresh supper for the hardiest of campers. This recipe can, of course, be modified if you find yourself without prosciutto or any of the listed vegetables, making the most difficult part remembering to bring the steaks with you. So, whether you’re camping under pines or the dogwood in your backyard, making this recipe is sure to be just what you need for your adventure.


Stuffed Steaks on a Ratatouille and Carrot Base Serves 4 people with a preparation time of 40 minutes. Ingredients for the steaks: 4 steaks (5 ½ oz. each) of any meat (beef, pork, turkey, veal & etc.) 4 teaspoons of spicy mustard 4 slices prosciutto or pancetta 2 sprigs of sage leaves Salt and pepper to taste Ingredients for the vegetable base: 3 tablespoons olive oil 2 carrots, peeled, quartered and sliced diagonally 4 potatoes, prepared in same fashion as carrots 1 small eggplant, chopped into small cubes (¾ inch) 1 zucchini, chopped into small cubes (¾ inch) 1 red pepper, seeded and chopping into small cubes (¾ inch) 2 tomatoes, chopped into small cubes (¾ inch) 7 oz. can chopped tomatoes 1 tablespoon sugar 1 tablespoon herbes de Provence

Preparation: 1. Use a knife to cut a pocket into each steak and smear the inside of each with one teaspoon of mustard. Spread out proscuitto (or pancetta) and lay sage leaves evenly on top, roll slices up. Stuff one roll into the pocket of each steak. 2. For the vegetables, put a pan (no plastic handles) on the grill. Heat the oil in the pan and sauté the vegetables over medium heat for five minutes. Stir in canned tomatoes, sugar and herbs. Cover and simmer for 12 minutes, stir occasionally. 3. Season the steaks with salt and pepper, grill them on the barbecue (or fry) on high heat for about four minutes on each side. Season vegetables to taste and divide between four plates. Lay steak over vegetable bed and serve. edm

eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 43


{ raise your glass }

Strawberry Summer Sunset BY REBECCA FENDING

A

s summer winds down, the steamy days seem to last forever. We almost always manage to catch the sunset view before heading to bed as the deep, warm colors melt together and spread over head. What better way to end a long day in the Mississippi sun than with a cool beverage that makes use of fresh, seasonal berries? This drink not only tastes like how summer should, but it also mimics those glorious sunsets from inside your glass. STRAWBERRY SUMMER SUNSET 1 ½ oz. Stoli ® Crushed Strawberry Vodka Juice from ½ lemon 3 oz. Lemon-lime soda 2 oz. Club soda Fresh sliced strawberries, lemon wedges Granulated or sanding sugar for sugared rim Take your glass of choice and drag a lemon wedge around the rim. Once wet, dip rim into a plate that contains a layer of sugar. Stand glass upright and place your desired amount of ice in the bottom. Insert your strawberry slices between the ice and glass. Next, measure your Stoli ® Crushed Strawberry Vodka, lemon juice, lemonlime soda and club soda into the glass. If you prefer to mix your drink, do so with a bar spoon, regular spoon or reusable straw. Otherwise, leave it as is for a beautiful red gradient. Finish with a lemon wedge garnish on the rim. Sip, sigh and enjoy!

44 • August/September 2020


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Temporary Isolation Can Be the Opportunity to Permanently Transform Your Weight and Health BY CANDANCE ROSEN Not sure how to eat and stay healthy this quarantine season without resorting to your familiar diet of spaghetti, bread, pizza, and sugar? Candice Rosen, R.N., MSW, and author of the upcoming book “Forget Dieting: It’s All About Data-Driven Fueling!” encourages “trophology,” or “food combining,” which is one of the foundations of Rosen’s DataDriven Fueling Plan. As you combine foods, Rosen adds that “monitoring blood glucose is the key to weight gain vs. weight loss; good health vs. poor health.”

1. MAKE WEDNESDAYS AND FRIDAYS VEGAN DAYS. According to Rosen, avoid dairy! Try vegan yogurts, cheeses, and milks. Dairy is inflammatory and will deplete your bones of calcium (it’s true!). There are unsweetened milks of almond, hemp, cashew, etc., and all are available in grocery stores. A low blood glucose breakfast idea would be a sprouted grain English muffin, spread with a tofu or nut-based cream cheese, some sliced tomatoes and topped off with sea salt or Trader Joe’s “Everything but the Bagel Sesame Seasoning Blend”.

2. EAT FRUITS THAT ARE HIGH IN FIBER. Apples, bananas, oranges, berries - the list goes on! You will still want to avoid sugary fruit juices, as well as very sweet fruits like pineapples and mangos while trying to lose weight. Fruit is always eaten alone with two exceptions: they can be added to a vegan smoothie and they can be eaten with a nut or seed butter. These healthy fats reduce the chance of a blood glucose spike.

3. NOTHING WHITE. To lower blood glucose, do not eat or combine animal proteins with any white potatoes, bread, rice, or pasta… EVER. Sorry!

4. EAT MORE SWEET POTATOES. Think wholesome, nutritious, responsibly grown, pancreaticfriendly foods (food that doesn’t raise your blood glucose) like sweet potatoes and yams, which are an incredibly nutritious 46 • August/September 2020

carbohydrate that are low in sugar levels and provide fiber. They’re best consumed baked or steamed, but can also be cooked in a variety of other ways. A great inexpensive lunch or dinner option is a baked sweet potato, split down the middle with a large spoonful of black beans, a tablespoon of tomatillo salsa and a side salad. To lower blood sugar, eat them with veggies and plant-based protein together, not meat.

5. TRY FISH. Give your body a break from animal protein. Red meats increase inflammation and provide poor sources of fat. However, if you crave protein, try fish! For those who aren’t allergic, fish is a fantastic source of protein that contains high amounts of omega-3 fatty acids, one of the few consumable healthy fats. If consuming fish raw, remember only sashimistyle – no white rice. To lower blood sugar, combine fish with veggies instead of starches or fruit. About the author: Candice P. Rosen, RN, MSW, CHC, is a registered nurse based in Los Angeles, CA. As the founding member of Gilda’s Club Chicago and its first executive director and program director, she created and coordinated a diverse array of wellness-related programs. She was appointed by Mayor Richard Daley to serve as Chair of Healthcare Initiatives for Chicago’s Sister Cities International Program (CSCIP). CSCIP provided an opportunity to advocate for preventive medicine, improve maternal and infant healthcare, stress disability access, promote nourishing diets and bring awareness to the obesity and diabetes epidemics that now affect populations on a global level. She is married and the mother of four adult children and grandmother to a precious granddaughter. For more information on Candice, please visit candicerosenrn.com.


Staycations and Restaurants to Cure Pandemic Blues BY KARA KIMBROUGH a variety of specials ($11) that include fried or grilled fish, fried or grilled shrimp, shrimp and grits, hamburger steak with gravy, beef tips with peppers and onions, skillet alfredo chicken or shrimp and gumbo. Each lunch entrée comes with a side, trip to the salad bar and beverage. Appetizers are the $6-$8 range and include fried green tomatoes, loaded potato bites, crab cake, cheese sticks and fried pickles. Looking for a sandwich or po’boy? Stacy’s has a full line-up, ranging from Philly cheese steak ($12), pulled pork sandwich ($8) and shrimp, fish, oyster and roast Grilled shrimp and skillet potatoes are a popular combination at Stacy’s Skillet. beef po’boys ($8-$12). Stacy’s is known for its steaks Staycations” have become a popular buzzword during the and most likely, you’ll find your favorite cut on the menu. pandemic, as elaborate vacations to other states were put From sirloin ($15) to filet mignon ($25) to the house ribeye on hold. Luckily, there’s plenty to see and do in Mississippi, ($23) and everything in between, including hamburger steak including exploring some of the interesting cities and towns ($13), beef tips ($14) and surf and turf ($36), you definitely from the Coast to the Tennessee line. One of my favorite small won’t leave hungry.  cities is Columbia. It’s a charming slice of Americana filled with If a seafood meal is more to your liking, you’ve come to historic buildings and homes, a Rockwellian downtown fronted the right place. Selections like fried fish ($13), shrimp ($13), by gift shops, a 100-year-old hardware store and more than a oysters ($18) and redfish ($17) are served up fresh, perfectly few above-average family-owned restaurants. fried or grilled and accompanied by favorite sides, hushpuppies One of my favorite places to dine when I’m in the area is and a salad. Stacy’s Skillet, a family-style restaurant owned by locals Stacy Pasta is often my selection of choice when I visit most and Eddie Morgan. Before you sit down in the large dining restaurants and Stacy’s is no exception. One of my favorite room at Stacy’s just off U.S. Hwy. 98, however, you’ll need to dishes is crab cake pasta ($14). Two crab cakes are situated on spend a little time exploring this special city. top of a bed of fettuccini adorned with crawfish cream sauce. First, there’s the 115-year-old county courthouse standing Other selections are equally good, including chicken or shrimp guard at the end of downtown. Shaded by majestic oaks, the etouffee ($12-$14), skillet Alfredo ($12-$14) and Stacy’s courthouse actually served as the state’s capitol for one year gumbo ($3-$8), to name a few. before it was moved to Jackson.   Just like the charming city of Columbia, it’s hard to Other can’t-miss sights are the nearby City Park inhabited encapsulate Stacy’s in a few paragraphs. You just have to by rare white squirrels placed there by former Gov. Hugh visit and, to borrow a slogan from the chamber, “Experience White and across the street, Columbia High School, an Columbia” (and Stacy’s Skillet) for yourself. edm impressive Art Deco style building dating back to the 1930’s. In nearby Foxworth, there’s Red Bluffs, called “The Little Grand If you go: Canyon of Mississippi.” There you’ll find breathtaking views Where: 12 E. Lakeview Dr., Columbia courtesy of red clay hills and scenic valleys perfect for hiking When: 11 a.m. – 2 p.m., 4-8 p.m., Monday through Friday and photographing.  and until 9 p.m. on Friday; 4 – 9 p.m. on Saturday and closed But enough about the scenery. When it’s time to eat, give on Sunday. Stacy’s a try. If you drop by at lunchtime, the restaurant offers Contact: (601) 736-0602 or check out their Facebook page.

eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 47


{ where to eat }

Unique Dishes and Experiences at Fields Steak and Oyster Bar Fields Steak and Oyster Bar | 111 Main Street, Bay Saint Louis | (228) 231-1972

BY JULIAN BRUNT

B

ay St Louis is popping at the seams. The weekend streets are crowded, it is not always easy to find a parking place and shops, bars and restaurants are working overtime. There is so much to see and do in this little seaside town of about thirteen thousand, but for me, there is only one choice when I am dining in The Bay, and that is Field’s Steak and Oyster Bar. The restaurant is pleasant, with high ceilings, lots of wood and the bar is obviously a local hangout, but the reason I always stop here is Chef de cuisine, Lauren Joffrion. This up and coming young she is absolutely on fire. Every dish that comes through her pass is beautifully plated, imaginative and delicious.

Crab Cake

Chef Lauren at Work 48 • August/September 2020

The menu, which changes three times a year, does not get lost in a hodgepodge that tries to cover too many bases; it has focus, with heavy emphasis on local seafood and culinary traditions, but bold enough to be dedicant, in a refined way. When I visited for this story, I tried something from the du jour menu and am still reeling over it: an amazing (large) crab cake, topped with a perfectly fried soft-shell crab, on a bed of collards (oh, those collards!) and served with a homemade remoulade. I love the pairings, but what really struck me was the attention that was paid to each ingredient. The crab cake, which had only enough breading to hold it together, was perhaps the best I have ever had. That would have been good enough to make the dish remarkable. But the soft-shell crab was perfect, crunchy yet still moist, too. I think what really got my attention was the greens. I am a collard green snob, to be sure, and Chef Lauren could have taken a short cut or two and this would still have been a great meal, but no, those greens were seriously good! What about the remoulade, you ask? Man, just get out of the way and give me a spoon!


The Double Smash Burger

Steak Po Boy Chef Lauren says she is, “Trying to impress local palates with interesting dishes they have never tried before, serving food that can only be found at Fields.” I think that there is no question that she has been successful. But she is modest with the success she has found and gives a lot of credit to her sous chef, Wayne Berthelot, another chef with the potential to go to places. Best sellers at Field’s include the “Fork and Knife Burger”, with a flaming bordelaise sauce applied at the table, the “Double Smash Burger”, seafood nachos, and the gumbo, made with shrimp and crab, green onion sausage and a very dark roux. Other dishes that stood out were the steak po-boy, and the Chef ’s Hand Cuts, all 28-day aged, hand cut, cast iron seared beef topped with wagyu butter, smoked rosemary and pepper crusted. Wow! Fields Steak and Oyster Bar is worth a drive from anywhere in the state. Stay a day or two in this quaint little city, I think you will fall in love with it, and, of course, Fields.. edm

Melting Wagyu Butter eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 49


When Summer Gives You Lemons... BY KARA KIMBROUGH

S

ummer temperatures have arrived, despite the fact that it’s still technically spring. But we do live in Mississippi, so I guess it was too much to expect for cool weather to stick around for very long. When the weather turns warm, I lose all desire for my favorite heavy pasta sauces, soups and chili. Instead, I turn to dishes and beverages that are lighter in texture, flavor and even color. Nothing fits the bill better than a lemon. Lemons are often pushed aside in flavor of fancier fruits like the fragrant orange or the perennial Mississippi favorite, watermelon. But don’t be so quick to relegate it to slices to jazz up sweet tea. Combined with olive oil and a splash of vinegar, lemon juice makes the perfect light salad dressing or topping for baked chicken or fish.

50 • August/September 2020

One of my favorite ways to take advantage of lemons this time of year is a frosty jug of fresh-squeezed lemonade in my refrigerator from now until, if I’m honest, Thanksgiving. It’s one of the best ways to quench my thirst and get those 10 glasses of recommended daily water. Another is a light and tangy lemonade cake. This is an older recipe that’s been around for a while; however, it has aged well and is still the perfect spring or summer dessert or snack. So, as we brace for yet another scorching Mississippi summer, stock up on lemons and turn up the A/C. And at the risk of sounding trite, when Mississippi weather gives you lemons… make lemonade…and cake!edm


(I used this recipe in the food column I wrote years ago on homemade cakes. In the column, I mentioned that my aunt and uncle, Hilda and Sonny Polk, loved to drive across Jackson to enjoy a piece of Primos Café’s famous caramel cake. After the column ran, they heard from long-lost high school friends and relatives who read the column online.) LEMONADE CAKE 1 box Duncan Hines Lemon Supreme cake mix 1/2 12-ounce can frozen lemonade concentrate 1 can sweetened condensed milk 8-ounce container of Cool-Whip Garnish: one lemon, thinly sliced and rolled in sugar Prepare cake using ingredients according to package directions and bake in two 8-inch cake pans. Cool and cut each layer in half. For frosting, combine milk and Cool Whip; add lemonade (to taste) until the right consistency is achieved (some may be left over). Frost and stack each layer, then cover entire cake with remaining frosting. Garnish with sugared lemon slices. Refrigerate before serving.

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Recipe Index Grilled Peaches, 8

Tugra Mash Cucumber Salad, 27

Parmesan Bacon Tomato Pasta Salad with Cracked Pepper Greek Yogurt Dressing, 15

Avocado Salad, 27

Roasted Okra, 20

Stuffed Steaks on a Ratatouille and Carrot Base from the campfire cookbook, 43

Mediterranean Catfish, 20

Strawberry Summer Sunset, 44

Blueberry Peach Cobbler, 20

Lemonade cake, 51

Greenhouse On Porter Biscuits, 26

Favorite End-Of-Summer Lemonade, 51

Follow us on Instagram to see some of the tasty, local bites we’ve discovered!

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www.instagram.com/eatdrinkmississippi 52 • August/September 2020


Cabbage and Apple Slaw

Share your recipes!

Apples are in season September through October in Mississippi. Here’s an easy, fresh and inexpensive recipe idea to make great use of fresh, local fruit. Best of all, there aren’t any measurements—it’s totally up to you! Ingredients: Fresh, local apples Red cabbage (or coleslaw mix) Walnuts or pecans White cheddar Apple cider vinegar Olive oil Salt/pepper to taste

Do you have a family-favorite dinner recipe? Or a favorite dish that never lasts long at gettogethers? Eat Drink Mississippi wants to feature your recipes in future issues. Please send recipes to info@eatdrinkmississippi.com, or mail them to PO Box 1663, Madison, MS 39130.

Prep your ingredients however you choose: chopped or sliced. Combine everything in a large bowl and play around with the amounts until it’s to your liking. Pairs best as a side dish with chicken or pork.

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Till We Eat Again

BILL DABNEY PHOTOGRAPHY

Jay Reed, a graduate of Ole Miss, lives in Starkville where he is a pharmacist by day and a freelance food writer by day off. He is a member of the Southern Foodways Alliance and writes "Eats One Ate," a weekly column in the Starkville Daily News.

August/September 54 • APRIL/MAY 2020 2020

Times Are A’Changing BY JAY REED I’m about to reveal a big secret about writing for magazines. Are you ready? It could blow your mind. Brace yourself, here it is: I did not write this column yesterday. Whether you (like me) read magazines from back to front and are absorbing these words on the way back from the mailbox, or if you’ve picked this up a month later from your good (and well read) friend’s coffee table, it wasn’t written yesterday. Truth be told, it was written at least weeks, if not a month or two in advance. And these days, so very much could happen in that time. Times are changing. There is new information to process every day - not social media rants, but important information that actually affects our lives. In 2019 I might have been able to predict in mid-summer what readers would be hungry for in early fall - literarily and culinarily - but 2020 has put all the fortune tellers out of business. What to do? August and September in Mississippi are still hot with a side of humidity, but Halloween and Thanksgiving are already on our radar, and Christmas blows in a few days later. If you don’t believe me, you haven’t been to the dollar store. (And if you don’t have a dollar store within arm’s reach, do you really live in Mississippi?) The big meal of the fall is, of course, Thanksgiving, but it’s just one day. Then leftovers for a week. But still, it’s mostly one big meal followed by dwindling remnants, then the last hurrah of the smoked turkey: a crock pot full of bone broth. The true meal representative of the fall is actually a set of meals - it might be just one for some, but for diehards it is six or perhaps a dozen spread over several months. Though a lot of work goes into them (even if the work is done by a caterer), the common dishes are finger foods, aka heavy hors d’oeuvres, party snacks, etc., so on the surface it might not seem as big an undertaking as turkey and dressing. I’m sure you’ve figured out by now I’m talking about tailgating: the continual grazing that takes place before, during and after a football game - mostly college, but sometimes high school, or pro if you’re lucky enough to live near a city with a team. Usually it’s lunch or early dinner, but with all the 11 am games our local teams get stuck with, it has also evolved into an opportunity to eat breakfast or brunch in tents designed to declare our allegiances. But now the powers that be are trying to decide if they’re even having college football games, and if they do, will the fans be invited? We might get to tailgate, but will the grills have to be six feet apart and how many people will be able to hang out under one tent? So many questions, and the answers could change seven times between the day I send this to my editor and the day you were originally assigned to make pigs in a blanket for the Arkansas game. What to do, indeed. In the end, I think there will be some sort of football, translated: I desperately hope there will be some sort of live football to occupy my weekends, as opposed to “classic” games re-broadcast. Even if I have to watch from home, a live contest inspires me to put something on the grill or smoker - watching Curt Gowdy broadcast the 1973 Rose Bowl (Archie Griffin’s appearance as a starting freshman notwithstanding) inspires me to watch the Taco Chronicles on Netflix. (Which may inspire me to make tacos, but that’s something else entirely.) One option is to huddle (appropriately) with friends or family. For several years, our small group at church got together on an away-game Saturday for an indoor tailgate party. We gathered in a big space with a big screen, brought lots of food, let the kids play together, and by chance, the number of attendees was well under today’s pandemic-appropriate limits. We prepared for social distancing before it was cool. If things don’t go our way, and we end up at a taco party instead, that’s not a terrible thing. But if you were planning to bring a case of Corona… you may want to rethink that. edm


DID YOU KNOW? • Almost 1 in 4 Mississippians — about 690,000 people — don’t have enough to eat. • More than 1 in 4 children (28.7%) go to bed hungry most every night. Stomachs are growling all over the state. Hunger is a problem all across America, but in Mississippi, it’s practically an epidemic.

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56 • August/September 2020

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