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Palate to Palette | Gucci to Goats | The Great Mississippi River Balloon Race

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Pumpkin Palooza Old Biloxi French Gumbo Baked Ricotta Pasta Jambalaya



+ On a Roll Gourmet Egg Rolls + Dino’s Grocery + Saltine Restaurant + Commodore Bob’s Yacht Club + Charred DISPLAY UNTIL NOVEMBER 30, 2017

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Saturday Oct. 7 Mobile Street

Downtown Hattiesburg

Friday & Saturday Oct. 20-21 Walthall Park

Downtown Hattiesburg



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New menu with daily lunch specials starting at $5.99!

Daily food & drink specials at both locations

FLOWOOD: 111 Market St. Flowood, MS 39232 |  RIDGELAND: 140 Township Ave. Ridgeland, MS 39157 |


3720 Hardy Street, Suite 3 • Hattiesburg, MS

601-261-2224 •

Come celebrate with us! October 1-31 Great savings on premium cutlery, cookware, cooking tools and more – all month long! Come withclass us! October Don’t miss ourcelebrate live demos and cooking hosted by ZWILLING J.A. 1-31 Henckels on October 19th. See class calendar details. Great savingsfor on premium cutlery, cookware, cooking tools and more – all month long! Don’t miss our live demos and cooking class hosted by ZWILLING J.A. Henckels on October 19th. See class calendar for details.


CONTENTS October/November 2017 • Volume 6 Number 6


in this issue 13 WHAT’S HOT Potpie With a Twist


CHEF’S CORNER Q&A with Chef Leslie Roark Scott of Ubons BBQ of Yazoo

20 PAINT BY HUNGER Robert St. John, Wyatt Waters Collaborate on New TV Show and Fourth Cookbook

26 MISSISSIPPI MADE Glo Light Up Drink Cubes

30 COOKIE CONNOISSEUR Jayess Teen Turns Passion for Baking Into Thriving Business

34 COMMUNITY Empty Bowls Feed Hungry Souls

42 FRESH FROM THE FARM Meet the Pearl River County Couple Living in the Magical World of Shroomdom

46 IN THE BLOGLIGHT Gucci to Goats

19 eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 5

Missing an issue?

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

Back issues are available for order on our website! VOLUME 6, NUMBER 1


Yuletide Yummies page 22





December/January 2017

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November 4 and 5, 2017


+ GRIT + Crystal Grill + Moo’s Barn & Grill + Nightingale’s Pantry + Hook Gulf Coast Cuisine eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 1

Share the Love

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February/March 2017


+ Catfish Blues + Lillo's Family Restaurant + Taste Bistro & Desserts + Phillips Drive-In + Second Street Bean

eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 1 - The Debutante Farmer -


It’s Time for a

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fiesta VOLUME 6, NUMBER 4

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Walthall County



April/May 2017


+ McEwen’s + Ground Zero Blues Club + Betty’s Eat Shop + Phillip M’s TheMISSISSIPPI Wayward Kraken eat.+drink. •1


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BOUNTY Fresh-From-the-Garden Recipes

BEST BURGER in Mississippi

Mississippi Seafood Trail | Berry Picking | The Great Ruleville Roast


eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI Gourmet Ice Pop Shops

June/July 2017


+ Steak by Melissa + Bellazar’s + Drago’s + Bin 612 + Jack’s by the Tracks

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Feast Like The King in Tupelo

Elvis-Inspired Recipes

eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI August/September 2017

+ Forklift + Downtown Grille + 303 Jefferson + 1884 Cafe + Sully’s

Crunchy Grilled Snapper Burritos Classic Southern Tomato Pie Quickie Pie

eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 1


CONTENTS October/November 2017


51 48 FROM MISSISSIPPI TO BEYOND Jackson Native Elaine Trigiani Connects Travelers to Italian Food Producers and Wine Makers

52 FROM THE BOOKSHELF What Can I Bring? Elizabeth Heiskell

54 RAISE YOUR GLASS Warm & Comforting Milk Steamers

56 THE HILLS On a Roll Gourmet Egg Rolls Oxford

60 THE DELTA Dino’s Grocery - Rosedale

64 THE PINES ON THE COVER: Pumpkin Rice Stuffed Turkey Tenderloin, page 39. Recipe and photography by Lisa LaFontaine Bynum

Commodore Bob’s Yacht Club Starkville

68 CAPITAL/RIVER Saltine Restaurant - Jackson

72 COASTAL Charred - Ocean Springs


FEATURED EVENT The Great Mississippi River Balloon Race

in every issue 8 From the Publisher 10 From Our Readers 14 Fabulous Foodie Finds 18 A Taste of Magnolia 78 Events 80 Recipe/Ad Index 82 Till We Eat Again

eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 7

{ from the publisher }


ack-o-lanterns give pumpkin a bad rap. I believe many people don’t give pumpkin a fair chance simply because of their memories of the smell from carving a jack-o-lantern as a kid. Personally, I’ve found that pumpkin is a delicious ingredient to include in fall recipes.

Despite a seemingly widespread aversion to pumpkin, the world tends to go “pumpkin spice crazy” the minute September 1st arrives. The odd thing is there’s not a smidgen of pumpkin in its namesake spice. It’s actually a blend of ground cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cloves, and sometimes allspice – the perfect combination for flavoring pumpkin pie. The food industry has cashed in on this craze and is manufacturing everything imaginable in pumpkin spice flavor. The ubiquitous pumpkin spice latte has, without a doubt, been the catalyst for this movement. I must admit that this tasty drink helps to usher in the fall season and sets me to dreaming of the cool, crisp days of sweater weather. Although I’m amazed at the creative combinations that hit the market each year, I’m equally appalled at many of them. I’d be willing to try Ben & Jerry’s Pumpkin Cheesecake Ice Cream, Werther’s Harvest Caramels, and Pumpkin Spice Cheerios. I just don’t know about pumpkin spice-flavored popcorn, pasta sauce, potato chips, and gum – and certainly not pumpkin spice chicken sausage. Even worse is pumpkin spice toothpaste. In this issue, Lisa Bynum saves the “pumpkin spice” day with three delicious recipes that are perfect for the season and will be a welcomed addition to the Thanksgiving table. Be sure to take a look beginning on page 38. Plus, at right, I’m sharing my all-time favorite pumpkin recipe. Those who know me well won’t be surprised to find that it’s for a dessert. Longtime “Deep South Dish” columnist Mary Foreman has decided to take a break from writing. I appreciate her contributions over the years and will miss her presence. In her place, I introduce “A Taste of Magnolia,” which will feature a different guest columnist in each issue. Kara Kimbrough kicks us off on page 18 with a tasty soup and gumbo to keep us warm when the cool days set in. As we head into Thanksgiving, let’s be extra grateful for our many blessings and pay it forward by sharing them with others.

pumpkin roll 3 eggs 1 cup sugar 2/3 cup mashed pumpkin (1/2 can) 3/4 cup plain flour 1 teaspoon lemon juice 1 teaspoon baking powder 1/2 teaspoon salt 2 tablespoons cinnamon 1 teaspoon ground ginger 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg 1 cup chopped pecans Powdered sugar Filling: 2 (3 ounce) cream cheese, softened 1/4 cup butter 1 cup powdered sugar 1 teaspoon vanilla Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease a 10x15-inch jelly roll pan and line with wax paper. In medium mixing bowl, beat eggs for 5 minutes. Add sugar and mix well. Add pumpkin, flour, lemon juice, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, ginger, and nutmeg; mix well. Pour and spread into jelly roll pan. Sprinkle nuts on top of batter. Bake for 15 minutes at 375 degrees. Remove cake from oven. Sprinkle clean kitchen towel with powdered sugar. Turn cake upside down onto towel. Remove wax paper. Roll up cake and towel together, starting on narrow side. Let cool completely. While cake cools, prepare filling. In small mixing bowl, beat cream cheese, butter, powdered sugar, and vanilla until smooth. Gently unroll cake. Remove towel and spread with filling; then re-roll. Slice to serve. Top with whipped cream.


"So I recommend having fun, because there is nothing better for people in this world than to eat, drink, and enjoy life. That way they will experience some happiness along with all the hard work God gives them under the sun.” Ecclesiastes 8:15


EAT DRINK MISSISSIPPI (USPS 17200) is published bi-monthly by Carney Publications LLC, 296 F.E. Sellers Hwy., Monticello, MS 39654-9555. Periodicals postage paid at Monticello, MS, and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to EAT DRINK MISSISSIPPI, P.O. Box 1663, Madison, MS 39130.


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{ from our readers } Loved the new issue. I really look forward to the magazine coming. Woody Davis via Facebook

Thanks for such a tasteful spread in your August/September 2017 issue about the Sipp Jackson blog.

Thank you for our 2017 Great Ruleville Roast & Run featured article (August/ September 2017). Great job!

Yolanda Clay-Moore via Facebook

Robin Wright Marlow via Facebook

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eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI J.J. Carney Publisher/Editor John Carney Executive Editor Paige McKay Associate Editor Anne Morgan Carney Executive Assistant Joe Luca Newsstand Sales Consultant




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DROP US A LINE! Thank you for your interest in this magazine. We would love to hear from you. Please understand that letters submitted become the property of eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI and may be edited for length and clarity. E-mail us at, leave a comment on our Facebook page, or write to P.O. Box 1663, Madison, MS 39130.

NEW ADDRESS? If you’re a subscriber and your address has changed, please let us know. The post office doesn’t provide forwarding service for the magazine and we don’t want you to miss an issue. Send your change of address to us at P.O. Box 1663, Madison, MS 39130 or e-mail us at 10 • OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2017



b © eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI All rights reserved. No portion of this publication may be reproduced or reprinted without written consent from the Publisher. Advertising rates and more information are available upon request. Subscriptions are $24 for one year and $36 for two years. Subscribe online or make checks payable to: eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI P.O. Box 1663 Madison, MS 39130

Looking for more recipes? Check out our recipe collection on our website!



• 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.

DONATE NOW! Every $1.00 donated provides seven meals to hungry Mississippians. eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 11

{contributors} BRITTANY BROWN, a native of Quitman, is a junior Broadcast Journalism major, Spanish minor at the University of Mississippi. She is involved in many organizations on campus, such as the National Association of Black Journalists, the Center for Inclusion and Cross Cultural Engagement, and the MOST Mentoring Program. She is currently working for the Daily Mississippian newspaper, Invitation Oxford magazine, and NewsWatch Ole Miss student broadcast. JULIAN BRUNT is a food and culture writer from the Gulf Coast whose roots run more than three hundred years deep in Southern soil. He is deeply concerned with culinary and cultural traditions and thinks no man worth his salt that cannot hold forth in tall tale and willingly endure the heat of the kitchen. LISA LAFONTAINE BYNUM is a freelance writer from Grenada. Her work has appeared in several publications in Mississippi. She is a graduate of Delta State University where she received a BA in Marketing and her MBA. In her free time, she enjoys food writing and photography. She currently resides in Brandon. Photo by Alisa Chapman Photography 12 • OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2017

COOP COOPER is a journalist, film critic and filmmaker based in Clarksdale. He graduated from Southern Methodist University with a B.F.A. in Cinema, and received his Masters in Screenwriting from the American Film Institute in Hollywood. You can read his past film-related articles at KELSEY WELLS LAMBERT is a news writer at Lawrence County Press in Monticello. She is a graduate of Southwest Mississippi Community College where she served as editor of The Pine Burr. She earned her Bachelor’s degree in Communications at William Carey University and served as a staff writer and life editor of The Cobbler student newspaper until she became managing editor her senior year. She and her husband reside in the Divide community where she is active in her church and community. SUSAN MARQUEZ lives and writes in Madison. She has a degree in Radio-TV-Film from the University of Southern Mississippi and had a long career in advertising and marketing before stumbling into a freelance writing career in 2001. Hundreds of published articles later, Marquez still loves to tell the stories of the interesting people, places, and events throughout the South.

KATHY K. MARTIN is an Ole Miss journalism graduate who currently lives in Collierville, Tennessee with her husband and two children. She works as a freelance writer and chairs her church’s Christian writers group. PAIGE MCKAY is Associate Editor of Eat Drink Mississippi. She earned a Bachelor’s degree in communication from Mississippi State University and currently lives in Madison. She spent five months in Washington, D.C., as a Legislative and Press Intern for Representative Steven Palazzo. She returned to Mississippi to work for the magazine. In her free time, she enjoys visiting Starkville and trying out new restaurants with friends.

{ what’s hot }

Potpie With a Twist As warm weather slowly turns cold, certain dishes that don’t make much sense serving during the summer start to sound more appealing. Potpie is one such dish. Here’s a great recipe for cooks who want to try something new with potpie.

Tortellini & Pancetta Potpie from Elinor Klivans’ Potpies: Yumminess in a Dish

Makes 6 servings 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon olive oil 6 ounces pancetta, cut into 1-2-inch pieces 1 cup finely chopped onion 2 large cloves garlic, finely chopped 1/4 cup lightly packed, coarsely chopped fresh basil 3/4 cup chicken broth (low sodium, if canned) 1/3 cup heavy whipping cream 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese 1/8 teaspoon salt 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 9 ounces cheese-filled egg tortellini 9 ounces cheese-filled spinach tortellini Extremely Flaky Sour Cream Crust (see below) Position a rack in the middle of the oven. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Rub 1 teaspoon olive oil inside a baking dish with an 8-cup capacity. In a medium skillet, cook the pancetta pieces over medium heat until the edges brown, about 10 minutes. Transfer the pancetta to a large bowl. In the same skillet, heat the 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium heat for 1 minute. Add the onion and cook until it softens, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and basil and cook for 1 minute. Stir in the chicken broth and adjust the heat to cook it at a gentle boil until it is reduced to about 1/2 cup, about 5 minutes. Add the cream, bring to a boil, then immediately remove the pan from the heat. Stir in the Parmesan cheese. Stir the sauce into the pancetta in the bowl. Add the salt and pepper and taste for seasoning. Set aside. In a large pot of salted boiling water, cook the tortellini for 5 minutes. Drain the tortellini well and stir them into the pancetta and sauce to coat them with sauce. Transfer the pasta to the baking dish. Place rolled dough (about 1/4inch thick) on top of the filling in sections and bake 20-25 minutes or until crust is golden and the filling is bubbling. Let cool 5 minutes and enjoy!

Extremely Flaky Sour Cream Crust 1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour 1/2 teaspoon baking soda 1/4 teaspoon salt 1 stick cold unsalted butter, cut into 16 pieces 1/4 cup cold sour cream To make the pastry in an electric mixer: Sift the flour, baking soda, and salt into a large bowl. Add the butter pieces and mix them with an electric mixer on low speed until the largest of the butter pieces are the size of small lima beans, about 1 minute. The butter pieces will be different sizes and there will still be some loose flour. Add the sour cream and continue mixing until large clumps of smooth dough that pull away from the sides of the bowl form, about 30 seconds. Stop the mixer and scrape the beaters clean, if needed. To make the pastry by hand: Sift the flour, baking soda, and salt into a large bowl. Use a pastry blender, your fingertips, or 2 dinner knives to combine the flour mixture and the butter until lima bean-size pieces form. Add the sour cream and stir with a large spoon for about 2 minutes until clumps of smooth dough form. Form the dough into a smooth ball, flatten it into a 6-inch disk, wrap it in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 30 to 60 minutes. You will see small pieces of butter in the dough. This is good and contributes to the flaky texture. The dough is now ready to roll and use in the recipe. eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 13

Give Thanks

{ fabulous foodie finds }

Sometimes, saying thanks isn’t enough. This Thanksgiving, show your friends and family just how thankful you are with these festive home decor pieces. Give thanks and get ready for the holidays.

Trivet, $19.95 Crate and Barrel

Kitchen Towel, $22.00 The Mississippi Gift Company, Greenwood

Charger, $24.95 Pier 1 Imports


Turkey on the Table Kit, $39.99 Turkey on the Table

Linen Printed Luncheon Napkin, $35.00 roll of 20 napkins MYdrap

Mud Pie Harvest Berry Thankful 2-Piece Serving Dish & Server Set, $26.00 Dillard's

see page 80 for store information eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 15

{ chef’s corner }

Q&A with Chef Leslie Roark Scott of Ubons BBQ of Yazoo


eslie Roark Scott started competitive BBQ in 1989 alongside her father, Garry Roark. He encouraged Scott to start competing, and in 1992, at age 19, Scott became the first female to win a grand championship at Memphis in May. Since then, Scott and the Ubons BBQ Team have cooked in competitions and festivals all over the country, including Memphis, Kansas City, New York City, New Orleans, and Chicago. Fast forward to today, Scott is now alongside her father as an owner and chef at Ubons BBQ in Yazoo City. She describes her role as a partner in the restaurant, catering, and sauce business, as well as rib and chicken cook for their competition team, who has been cooking together for more than 25 years. Scott can also claim the title of Chopped Grillmasters Champion. She has appeared on Chopped Grillmasters, Chopped Impossible, BBQ Crawl, and BBQ Pitmasters. She and her father also competed on the Destination America show Smoked, and they were named “Pitmasters to Watch” by Zagat earlier this year. Not only does Ubons serve up good, down-home BBQ, but they also produce and sell their own sauce and Bloody Mary mixes. Ubons BBQ Sauce is where the family got their start in the professional world of BBQ. The sauce is Scott’s grandfather’s and goes back at least five generations. Scott also boasts their Blood Mary Mix. Available in two flavors, BBQ and Hot & Spicy, Ubons Bloody Mary Mix was developed using their homemade BBQ sauce and homemade dill pickle juice.

How did you get your start in the BBQ business? In 1989, my father and I started cooking competition BBQ. My daddy encouraged me to become a pitmaster, and at 19 years old, I was the first female to win a grand championship on the Memphis in May circuit… and I was hooked! Competition BBQ became my passion. What is your favorite food memory? For the last 30 plus years, my Aunt Ginger has hosted our family for a very elegant Thanksgiving dinner. The menu is the same and includes my Uncle Steve’s smoked turkey, my grandmother’s cornbread dressing, sweet potatoes with pralines, creamed shoe peg corn asparagus…ah, the list goes on! We’re always seated at a very long table that’s set with fine china and silver. We go around the table and everyone tells what they are thankful for. The year that I got married was a very emotional year, and we found out that it’s best to eat and then tell what we’re thankful for – too many leftovers otherwise! Each year replaces the last as my favorite food memory. What makes Ubons different than other BBQ joints? Ubons Restaurant focuses on Mississippi style BBQ. We sell 16 • OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2017

competition-quality BBQ, as well as the best fried chicken in the south. We want people to leave here making plans to return to Yazoo City to eat. At the heart of Ubons, we are a family. We feel that BBQ is a great equalizer and that all disagreements melt away when the biggest point of contention is if you prefer Memphis BBQ or Kansas City BBQ. We love that we get to travel the country and bring our front porch! What are your signature dishes? I’m a rib cook. It’s what I first learned and what I will always love best. I cook more than BBQ, but BBQ is at the heart of all that I do. If you’re in Yazoo and Ubons, I’ll recommend the ribs, brisket, and pulled pork. What makes the BBQ sauce so special? Ubons Sauce is an old Roark family recipe that dates back to my great grandparents in southeast Missouri. The sauce is sweet and a tangy – a tomato and vinegar base – that gets its style from Memphis and Kansas City. What’s Ubons most popular menu item? Our Mississippi Style Brisket is a favorite. We use our dry-rub instead of a thick,

Leslie’s Quick Salad with Hot and Spicy Blood Mary Mix Vinaigrette 2 cucumbers, sliced 2 tomatoes, sliced 1 sweet onion, sliced 1 cup Ubon's Hot and Spicy Bloody Mary Mix 1 cup Apple Cider Vinegar 1/2 cup sugar 3 tablespoons salt Mix the ingredients together, cover, and refrigerate for an hour or more. This salad gets better the longer it sits. Ubon's BBQ Sauce and Blood Mary Mix is available for purchase at Kroger and

peppered crust, and our cooking method is different from traditional Texas-style BBQ. The result is a tender, flavorful brisket that melts in your mouth. What’s your favorite dish to eat? My son has perfected the art of a buttermilk biscuit! My favorite food today is his buttermilk biscuits with tomato gravy, served with “yard eggs” from our backyard chickens, and a slab of bacon and sausage from our nephew’s farm in south Mississippi, Sweet Grass Pastures. What do you enjoy doing on your days off? We travel so much for BBQ that vacation for us is hanging out at home. We’ve got chickens and a small garden that gets as much attention as I can give. What do you enjoy cooking at home? My husband got sick a few years ago, and our family has changed how we eat. We eat lots of fresh vegetables, whole grains, and lean meats. I’ve enjoyed developing recipes with healthy alternatives. My favorite is what I call a sneaky spaghetti – mostly vegetables in a tomato sauce served with noodles. I’ve managed to get my whole family eating cauliflower, broccoli, and quinoa. When you’re not at work, where do you like to eat out? I feel committed to eating locally and at unexpected spots. There are some amazing gems in Yazoo: Lamar Red Barn and Hall of Fame for amazing burgers, and Ribeyes Steak House for the

best steak in Mississippi. Tell us a little bit about your restaurant. Ubons opened in June 2004. In the years since, Ubons has represented Mississippi style BBQ in festivals across the country including the Big Apple BBQ Block Party, NYC; Windy City Smoke Out, Chicago; Q in the Lou, St. Louis; Hogs for the Cause, New Orleans; and Florida BBQ Festival, Naples, FL. We continue to compete in competitions across the country. Our restaurant is excited to offer Mississippi style BBQ, as well as a daily southern lunch. We are open seven days a week for lunch, and Fridays and Saturdays until 9 p.m. Will you be competing or attending any events anytime soon? This year on Thanksgiving weekend, Ubons is planning a traditional boucherie at Sweet Grass Pastures in Lucedale as a fundraiser for Hogs for the Cause, an organization whose mission is to benefit families with children with brain cancer. We’ll be butchering and cooking chickens, turkeys, hogs, and featuring Mississippi-grown vegetables, honey, and cheese. We will have two days of food, music, and learning about sustainable farming and how to prep fresh food. We are expecting to feature chefs from around the county, and we will have spots available for tent camping. We encourage folks to watch our social media and website for further details and ticket sales. All proceeds will go to Hogs for a Cause. edm

eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 17

Taste of Magnolia

Soup, Gumbo Can Be Festive, Filling Fall Foods


KARA KIMBROUGH is an Associated Press awardwinning journalist from Magee who enjoys interviewing everyone from ordinary Mississippians to celebrities. She writes a syndicated food column published in state and national newspapers. She is a restaurant reviewer and her travel, food, and lifestyle articles appear in magazines around the Southeast. She has taught Communication Studies at The University of Southern Mississippi and operates a marketing and public relations firm. She has served as a pageant judge, corporate trainer, and public speaker.



BY kara kimbrough

t happens every year around this time. Fall arrives and summer’s crisp vegetables and delicate fruits fade out, making way for deeper, moodier versions matching colorful fall leaves and darker evening skies. Mississippians return from vacations and gather close to rekindle family ties and renew friendships. Family meals and neighborhood supper clubs are added back to the schedule. Bible studies, bunko games, and football parties are revived after a summer hiatus. Like the season itself, fall dishes carry a note of complexity that requires a bit more planning than easy, breezy, summer meals. Many autumnal offerings thrive in crossover roles that lend themselves to outdoor gatherings in which the lingering heat is still a factor. Hearty ingredients like savory meatballs, pulled pork, and seafood make delightful cameo appearances in light soups and gumbo. These flavorful dishes serve as perfect meals during fall’s fickle weather and are a welcome change from summer’s light salads and sandwiches. One of my favorite fall soups is my version of “spaghetti in a bowl.” Italian Wedding Soup is filled with a combination of three of my favorite foods: pasta, vegetables, and meatballs. When time is short, I use store-bought broth for a heartier base and frozen meatballs instead of making them from scratch. Recently, an entire Saturday afternoon beckoned. I took advantage of the free time to roll and make 200 meatballs. All but 25 were placed in the freezer for future meals. The remainder were destined for a pot of Italian Wedding Soup bound for a girls’ night out at a friend’s house. Once the soup was cooked to perfection, I grabbed a loaf of garlic bread hot from the oven and placed it in the car along with the covered Dutch oven. Served straight from the pot, my “spaghetti in a bowl” was the hit of girls’ night out. Gumbo is another dish that is not bound by seasonal boundaries. It’s delicious year-round, but fall is when I get out my skillet and begin making roux. Served over rice or with a simple side of garlic bread and, if desired, a green salad, it’s a savory, satisfying dish. Recently, I was excited to receive an “old time” Gulf Coast recipe from my friend, Debbie Raymond of Biloxi. Filled with savory Gulf Coast shrimp and sautéed vegetables, Old Biloxi French Gumbo is the perfect way to celebrate crisp, cool, fall nights. edm

Italian Wedding Soup by Kara Kimbrough

1 tablespoon olive oil 1 cup chopped onions 1 cup chopped carrots 1 clove garlic, minced 32 ounces chicken stock 1 can cream of mushroom soup 1 can cream of chicken soup 1 (10-ounce) box frozen spinach, thawed and drained 25 cooked meatballs 1 cup shell pasta Salt and pepper, to taste 1 teaspoon fresh dill, minced

In a large Dutch oven, brown onions, carrots, and garlic in olive oil. Once vegetables are wilted, add chicken stock and soups, and stir. Bring to a low boil. Cover and boil for 6-8 minutes Add spinach, meatballs, pasta, salt and pepper, and dill. Cover pot and allow to simmer until pasta is tender. Note: I like my soup thick and hearty, but if you prefer a thinner base, continue to add chicken broth or water until it achieves the desired consistency.

photo by j.j. carney

Old Biloxi French Gumbo 1/2 cup flour 6 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided 1 small onion, minced 4 stalks celery (tops removed), minced 1/2 green pepper, chopped 4 or 5 green onions, chopped 1 tablespoon catsup 1-1/2 teaspoons Kitchen Bouquet browning and seasoning sauce 1 pound (or more) raw, peeled shrimp 6 cups hot tap water (not boiling) Salt and pepper, to taste Pinch parsley Pinch celery salt 2 or 3 drops hot sauce 2 whole bay leaves Splash of wine (up to the cook, white or red) 2 cups okra, chopped 2 large tomatoes, peeled and chopped 1/2 pound sausage or ham, sliced or chopped and gently browned (Andouille sausage works well), optional Cooked rice First, make a roux. In a heavy saucepan or pot, stir together flour and 4 tablespoons oil until smooth. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until golden brown. When the roux is a golden brown color, add onion, celery, green pepper, and green onions. Cook until vegetables are slightly limp. Add catsup, Kitchen Bouquet, and shrimp. Simmer on low to medium heat for 10 minutes. Pour into 2 quart or larger stock pot.

Add hot water, salt, pepper, parsley, celery salt, hot sauce, bay leaves, and wine. Let simmer while preparing okra and tomatoes. In sauté pan, heat 2 tablespoons oil. Add okra and tomatoes. Cook until slightly browned and moisture disappears from the okra. (You will know this when you lift the spoon and it has a thickness to it coming off of the spoon.) Add to pot. Add sausage or ham, if desired. Simmer 30 minutes. Remove bay leaves before serving. Serve as is or over rice. Notes: If you scorch your roux, do not continue with the recipe. Throw it out and start over. Many cooks have ruined a pot of gumbo and wasted good seafood. If you dislike chopping, there are containers in the produce aisle with the onion, celery, pepper and green onions already chopped. Use about 2 cups. Gumbo always tastes better the second day. Gives the flavors time to marinate. This recipe is not considered a “ true” seafood gumbo. This is why it is called Old Biloxi French Gumbo. Seafood gumbo has shrimp, crab meat, and oysters. Some cooks will add fish in place of crab meat. There is definitely a taste difference. Recipe provided by Debbie Raymond, who was born at Keesler Air Force Base and raised on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. For many years, Raymond shared her innate knowledge of the area’s history and culinary highlights with visitors from around the world as a motorcoach guide for Mississippi Gulf Coast Convention and Visitor’s Bureau. eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 19


Paint by Hunger Robert St. John, Wyatt Waters Collaborate on New TV Show and Fourth Cookbook By Lisa LaFontaine Bynum


ou could say Chef Robert St. John and Painter Wyatt Waters are both artists. One wields a chef ’s knife and works his magic in a kitchen, transforming simple ingredients into meals that delight people from all over the country. The other works from a studio, brandishing a paint brush and transforming blank canvases into colorful, artistic glimpses into the Southern culture. Though both are from Mississippi, they operate in very different circles. St. John is a restaurateur in Hattiesburg; Waters’ studio is located in Clinton. It would seem unlikely that

Robert St. John

Wyatt Waters

their paths would ever cross, but that’s just what happened. The result is a friendship that has lasted 10 years, a collaborative partnership that has produced four successful cookbooks, and a new TV show debuting in October. The story unfolds quite by accident. St. John has been the author of a syndicated column since the 1990s. A regular customer at one of his restaurants had been urging him to write a cookbook. It was not an idea St. John took seriously until that same customer brought a book publisher to his restaurant. “She said, ‘Robert, … tell him about your cookbook.’ I had no cookbook and, seriously, had never ever thought about doing a cookbook before that moment. So, trying to eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 21

think quickly on my feet, I said, ‘If I were to do a cookbook, I would have recipes I have developed here at the restaurant over the years, stories like in my newspaper column about the South, growing up in the South, and food in the South, and watercolors by Wyatt Waters.” The publisher told St. John is he could get Waters on board, he had a deal. Only problem was, up until that point, St. John was only an admirer of Waters’ work. The two had never actually met. The next day,. St. John drove to Waters’ studio and pitched him the idea. Waters agrees, and the rest, as they say, is history. The duo’s collaborative works have covered everything from Southern culture to Italian cuisine. Their fourth book, A Mississippi Palate: Heritage Cuisine and Watercolors of Home, will debut in November of this year. The book contains 105 of St. John’s Mississippi-inspired recipes paired with Waters’ beautiful watercolor illustrations of life and culture in Mississippi. St. John admits that recipe selection for A Mississippi Palate was the hardest to date. “I really struggled with it,” he says. “There are so many options and directions I could go.”


Ultimately, he decided on, “food I grew up eating as a child. It’s food I eat today, serve in the restaurant, food that has inspired me that’s cooked by other chefs or home cooks. It’s Mississippi to me and that’s Mississippi enough.” The release also coincides with a new TV show, Palate to Palette, which debuts on Mississippi Public Broadcasting on Thursday, October 12th at 7 p.m. During the six-episode series, St. John and Waters bring their cookbook to life by visiting, painting, and eating their way across Mississippi. Waters and St. John both feel this collaboration is their best yet. St. John points out a few of his favorite recipes, such as Deer and Duck Sausage Jambalaya and Blackened Gulf Fish with Corn and Andouille Maque Choux. How does A Mississippi Palate differ from their previous Southern-themed books – A Southern Palate and Southern Seasons? “It looks like Mississippi, tastes like Mississippi, and feels like Mississippi. Outsiders look at Mississippi as some exotic land. We have Elvis and the Blues. This book is meant to be that experience. For people who live here, it should feel like home.” edm

Delta Gumbo from A Mississippi Palate

My brother Drew St. John has a farm in the Delta where we do most of our hunting for deer and duck. The deer are bigger in that part of the state, and the ducks are plentiful. He eats peanut butter crackers with gumbo. This recipe is for him. - Robert St. John 6 cups duck broth (use Chicken Broth recipe below, substitute 2 to 3 pounds duck thighs) 2 cups diced Roma tomatoes, with juice 1/2 cup Tomato sauce 1 tablespoon Worcestershire 2 tablespoons hot sauce 1-1/2 tablespoons Creole Seasoning (below) 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 1 bay leaf 1 teaspoon dried basil 1 teaspoon dried thyme 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano 1/2 cup corn oil 1 cup all-purpose flour 2 tablespoons filé powder 2 cups medium-diced yellow onions 1-1/2 cups medium-diced celery 3/4 cup medium-diced green bell peppers 1/4 cup chopped green onion 1 tablespoon minced garlic 1 pound deer sausage, sliced Reserved cooked duck meat from duck stock 2–3 cups cooked white rice In a large stockpot, bring the duck stock to a simmer. Add the tomatoes, tomato sauce, Worcestershire, hot sauce, and seasonings and herbs. Heat the oil over high heat in a separate large skillet, make a dark roux by CAREFULLY adding the flour and filé powder and stirring constantly until the roux is a very dark brown. Add the vegetables to the roux and continue cooking for 5 minutes. Add the sausage and duck and continue cooking for another 5 minutes. Add the roux mixture to the simmering stock, stirring until all is dissolved and incorporated. Cook on medium heat for 20 minutes. Place a small amount of white rice in each serving bowl, then pour the gumbo over the rice and serve. Makes 1 gallon.

Chicken Broth 1 (2 to 3-pound) whole chicken 8 cups water, room temperature 1 large diced onion 1 large carrot, peeled and sliced 1 inch thick 2 celery ribs, sliced 3 garlic cloves, smashed 3 sprigs fresh thyme 3 sprigs fresh flat-leaf parsley 1 bay leaf 1 tablespoon whole black peppercorns 1 tablespoon salt Combine all ingredients in a large stockpot. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer for one hour. There should be very little movement in the water. Remove the chicken and place in a pan to cool at room temperature. When the chicken is cool enough to handle, pull the meat from the bones and shred with forks. You should end up with about 3 cups of meat. Strain the broth through a finemesh strainer and discard the vegetables. Broth may be refrigerated for 3 days or frozen for a month.

Comeback Sauce from A Mississippi Palate

If Mississippi had an official condiment, it would be comeback sauce. The original recipe was developed at the Rotisserie in Jackson in the 1940s, and from there it spread to all the old-line restaurants, most of which were operated by hard-working and dedicated Greek immigrant restaurateurs. More than 40 years later, we started serving it at our restaurants in Hattiesburg. This recipe is perfect as a salad dressing, a condiment for dipping onion rings (or Captain’s Wafers), or as a substitute for mayonnaise in recipes (sub comeback for mayo the next time you make deviled eggs and your friends and family will love you for it). - Robert St. John 1 cup mayonnaise 1/2 cup ketchup 1/2 cup chili sauce 1/2 cup cottonseed oil or other flavorless oil 1/2 cup grated yellow onion 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice 2 tablespoons minced garlic 1 tablespoon paprika 1 tablespoon water 1 tablespoon Worcestershire 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard 1 teaspoon salt Combine all ingredients in a food processor and mix well. Makes 1 quart.

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Chargrilled Oysters from A Mississippi Palate

This is a recipe I developed for our restaurants and it has been one of the most popular appetizers we’ve ever served. It’s almost impossible to mess this up (just don’t overcook the oysters). - Robert St. John 1/2 pound unsalted butter 1/2 pound margarine 2 tablespoons minced garlic 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese 2 tablespoons chopped fresh, flat-leaf parsley 12 Fresh Gulf oysters on the half shell, shucked Toasted French bread


Preheat an outdoor grill to high. In a small pot, melt the butter and margarine over low heat. Once melted, add the garlic and pepper. Combine the Parmesan and parsley. Place the shucked oysters directly over the flames of the grill. Ladle 1/4 cup of the garlic butter over the oysters. Be careful, this will flame up. Let cook for 2 to 3 minutes, then sprinkle half of the cheese mixture over the oysters. Pour over another 1/4 cup of the garlic butter and allow to cook for another 4 to 5 minutes. The oysters should be bubbling and the edges should just start to brown. Remove and sprinkle with the remaining cheese and a little more garlic butter. Serve immediately with toasted French bread.

eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI

Bin 612 boasts a cafe-like atmosphere popular with college students and locals alike. The Bin’s menu offers an eclectic blend of pizzas, panini, burgers and more made with fresh local ingredients.



Visit our website for Mississippi culinary news, recipes, cooking tips, culinary events, and more!

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{ mississippi made }

Time to Get Glo-ing


Young Entrepreneurs Light Up the Cocktail World with Innovative Idea


story by susan marquez | photography by anna barker and blake mccollum

lop, plop, glow! That’s all it takes to make any cocktail a bit more special. Drop in a GloCube lighted ice cube, and your drink will glow as it cycles through shades of red, blue, green, yellow, and purple. The first ever liquidactivated lighted drink infuser has no buttons or switches – these cubes are liquid-activated and turn off when removed from the drink. It started as an idea for a graphic design class at Mississippi State University. Kaylie Mitchell wanted to come up with a product that would make a real splash, and with the help of engineer Hagan Walker, GloCubes were born. “Glo came to life in my bedroom closet,” explains Walker. The prototype was rough, to say the least. Walker soldered all of the electrical components, then a case was made from a toothbrush travel protector and hot glue. “We dropped it into a glass of water, crossed our fingers, and it lit up!” Mitchell and Hagen received $10,000 from the MSU

Enterprise Center to start their company, Vibe, LLC. It was important to the duo to get a patent for the product, which meant they first had to get it FDA-approved. Glo is completely non-toxic, including being BPA and phthalate-free, and it’s been approved by the Consumer Product Safety Commission. The glowing devices are made in an FDA-approved facility and, according to Walker, they are perfectly safe. GloCubes have been a wild success in places like bars and casinos. People are using them at parties as well to add some excitement, including fraternity and sorority parties, wedding receptions, and corporate functions. The cubes can be personalized, so they make great company giveaways at trade shows. “We’ve had good success along the West Coast,” said Walker. “Bartenders in California really love the concept.” For one thing, bartenders can tell when a drink is empty when they see the cube isn’t glowing. For those who are into cocktail eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 27

culture, the GloCube website includes a blog with cocktail recipes, including Walker’s favorite, a Moscow Mule. Jonni Webb became one of the first to purchase the cubes for resale in central Mississippi. Her booth at Madison Marketplace contains both her pottery and bar supplies. “GloCubes are a fun addition to the products I carry,” Webb said. “I’ve never seen a product so unique. They are fun for parties and other gatherings.” The technology has also extended beyond the cocktail market and into the bathroom with the fusing of Glo with Musee, a Mississippi company that produces scented bath balms, each named after a rock-n-roll song. The collaboration began when a GloCube customer struggled with her autistic son’s bath time. She popped a cube into the tub and the child instantly began focusing on the colored lights, which


calmed him down while the mother bathed him. Now the “This Little Light of Mine” bath balm is filled not only with natural ingredients like olive oil and cedarwood essential oil, but it is embedded with a reusable yellow Glo cube. “We’ll be doing a red one for Christmas called ‘Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer,’” said Walker. Walker and his team are continually thinking of new and innovative uses for Glo technology, including exploring making them lemon and lime flavored so bartenders won’t have to spend time cutting up fruit for cocktails. edm GloCubes 101 S. Lafayette St., Starkville 866.996.2156

Moscow Mule 5 strawberries 1/2 lime 2 ounces of vodka 4-6 ounces of ginger beer Ice

Muddle the strawberries and lime juice together. (Use strawberry juice if you’d like to cheat this step) Add vodka, ginger beer, and ice to the mix. Add Glo cubes and enjoy! eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 29

Ana-Katherine Boyd 30 • OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2017

Cookie Connoisseur Jayess Teen Turns Passion for Baking Into Thriving Business “A

story by kelsey wells lambert photography by morgan boyd and kelsey wells lambert

hobby that has taken over our lives.” Those are the words that Morgan Boyd, mother of AnaKatherine Boyd, uses to describe her daughter’s cookie baking. Through social media and word of mouth, 14 year-old AnaKatherine has obtained quite a good reputation for her cookie baking and decorating talents over the past year. Boyd began baking cookies in October. “They were terrible,” she admitted when speaking of her first attempt. Inspired by an aunt, she kept working until she found the perfect recipes for her cookie dough and icing. She doesn’t reveal her secret recipes to others, but did say that she tweaked a dough recipe she found on Pinterest. During the Christmas season, she made some Christmas tree-shaped cookies. The recipient was impressed with Boyd’s work and mentioned her on Facebook. Between Thanksgiving and Christmas, armed with a hand mixer and determination, Boyd filled orders for approximately 75 dozen cookies. Orders have continued to pour in,

and she completed orders for approximately 70 dozen cookies over the span of just three days around Valentine’s Day. For Christmas, Boyd received a stand mixer, which helped her to make dough and icing more quickly and with less work. Her orders continue to grow, and she has baked and decorated cookies for baby showers, gender reveal parties, birthday parties, and even the local prom. She is now baking her creations for wedding receptions. Though she doesn’t typically ship her cookies because of the added costs to her customers, her cookies have found their way to events in Alabama, Georgia, Florida, and even a bachelorette party in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. She said that birthday parties are her favorite assignment because she gets to create cookies based on the themes of the parties. Some cookie orders can take two to three days to fill because of the required multi-step process. Boyd makes all of her own dough and icing, then must roll out and cut the dough into shapes to be baked. After the cookies have baked and cooled, she lines each one with icing

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and uses a technique called flooding to fill in each cookie with a thin icing. After this icing dries, she personally adds details to each cookie using tubes of thicker icing. Only then are the cookies ready to be presented to her customers. While her mother jokes about their sometimes chaotic lifestyle, she is also quite proud of her daughter’s accomplishments. “With all of the awful things that I hear about parents facing with their teenage children, it’s great if she wants to turn our kitchen into a cookie factory every night,” Morgan explains. When large quantities of cookies are needed within a short time, Morgan and other close family members step up to help with the baking, leaving the detailed decorating to AnaKatherine. In addition to her success as a baker, Ana-Katherine excels in many other areas. She played basketball and was an honor student at Topeka-Tilton Attendance Center near her home in Jayess. Now a freshman at Lawrence County High School in Monticello, she takes advanced academic courses and enjoys attending football games. While she loves baking and decorating cookies, she said that she doesn’t want to pursue the culinary arts as a career. Her goal is to become a pediatric surgeon. You can see more of Ana-Katherine’s work by visiting Instagram page, iced_by_annie, or her newly-established Iced by Annie Facebook page. For orders, email icedbyannie@gmail. com or call 601-395-0625. edm

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{ community }

Empty Bowls FEED Hungry Souls


Organizations Around the State Fight Hunger With Soup and Pottery Events story by susan marquez photos courtesy of natchez pottery


simple bowl of soup may be a king’s feast to many who don’t know where their next meal may be coming from. A bowl of soup may be full of nourishment, but often, it’s also food for the soul. Hunger can affect people from all walks of life. For too many, a job loss or medical crisis can result in food insecurity. Despite Government programs such as food stamps, WIC (special supplemental nutrition for women, infants, and children), and a national school lunch program, many families are struggling to put food on the table each day. According to the Feeding America organization, there were 643,390 people in Mississippi who were food insecure in 2016. That’s 21.5% of the state’s total population. As a way to give artists and art students a way to make a personal difference, John Hartom, an art teacher in Michigan, along with his friend, Lisa Blackburn, joined forces to raise charitable funds using ceramic bowls made by Hartom’s students in their high school art classes. The bowls were then used as individual serving pieces for a fund-raising meal of soup and bread. Those attending the event were able to keep their empty bowls as a remembrance of not only the event, but as a reminder of those in their community who may be suffering from hunger. The event was such a success that Hartom and Blackburn formed the Imagine/RENDER Group, a 501c3 organization to promote the Empty Bowl concept to others so that it could be replicated around the country. The events are designed so that one hundred percent of each meal’s proceeds are devoted to local hunger-fighting organizations as well as to national or international charitable groups. Typically, Empty Bowl events are sponsored by local potters, artist organizations, churches, community service organizations, and schools. The objects are to raise as much money as possible to feed the hungry, increase awareness of hunger and related issues, and advocate for arts education as a means of finding new solutions to old problems. There have been an abundance of Empty Bowl events in Mississippi over the years, which have collectively contributed to the feeding of thousands of hungry people. For 13 years, an annual Empty Bowl fundraiser has been held for The Food Pantry in Oxford. The event is scheduled near or on Valentine’s Day at the Oxford-University Methodist Church, but due to a renovation project at the church this year, the event was held at the Oxford Conference Center. For $20, those attending can choose their favorite handmade bowl and their choice of soup. This year’s event featured soup donated from 22 restaurants and caterers. Choices such as taco soup, seafood chowder, minestrone, shrimp and crab bisque, and gumbo were all served with love. For an organization like The Food Pantry, the event is vital to keeping people fed. The Pantry feeds an eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 35

average of 1,000 individuals a month and depends on funding by the annual fundraiser luncheon, community organizations, food drives, and individual donations. Betsy Cox of Ridgeland chaired an Empty Bowl event at Jackson’s Christ United Methodist Church in 2009 and said it was a very successful fundraiser for the Society of St. Andrew, a group that works with farmers and growers to collect fresh produce after they’ve harvested their fields. “They are a ‘greening’ organization,” explained Cox. “They glean what the farmers are unable to harvest with their machines and provide tons of fresh produce to those in need.” The event at the church featured more than 400 bowls painted by different groups within the church, including children, youth, and women’s groups. The $15 ticket included a bowl and soup donated by several area restaurants, with some of the chefs volunteering to serve. “Derek and Jennifer Emerson were there, serving in the soup line,” said Cox. The event also featured a pottery sale and entertainment by singer/songwriter Tricia Walker. The Stewpot in Natchez is the beneficiary of the Empty Bowls event presented every other year by Natchez Pottery. The studio, owned by Patricia Gaudé, donates the clay, firing, and glaze for the bowls which are made by members of the studio as well as by students and youth group members. The tickets to the event are $25 and include both wheel-turned and hand-built pottery bowls. “We try to make 400 bowls for the event,” said Gaudé. Participants enjoy a simple meal of gumbo and cornbread, and they keep the bowl as a reminder of the empty bowls in the Natchez community and the world. In Downtown Hattiesburg, an Empty Bowls event will be 36 • OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2017

held October 21st, 10:30 a.m. - 1 p.m, in and around Main Street Books. Tickets are $25. The event will feature about 700 bowls made by faculty at colleges/universities, students, as well as professional potters Claudia Cartee (KA Pottery) and Sid Krhut. It will also feature live music and animals from Hattiesburg Zoo along with soup, bread, and desserts from 20 area restaurants. Proceeds benefit the food pantry at Edwards Street Fellowship Center. There are other Empty Bowls events around the state, each benefitting a different organization to feed the hungry. edm

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Pumpkin Palooza recipes and photography By Lisa LaFontaine Bynum Have you been counting down the days until fall? Cooler weather, colored leaves, and of course, pumpkins, pumpkins, pumpkins! Celebrate the season with these pumpkin-inspired recipes using Mississippi-made products.

Two Brooks farm Pumpkin Rice Stuffed Turkey Tenderloin 1 pound ground Italian sausage 8 ounces sliced white mushrooms 1 medium bell pepper, diced 1 small onion, diced 2 cloves garlic, minced 2 cups cooked Two Brooks Farm Delta Belle long grain white rice 1/4 cup slivered almonds 1/2 cup pumpkin puree 1/4 cup chicken broth Salt and pepper to taste 3 (1/2 - 3/4 pound) turkey tenderloins In a large skillet, brown the Italian sausage until it is no longer pink, breaking it up into smaller pieces while you cook. Using a slotted spoon, remove the sausage and set aside. Reserve any drippings. Add the mushrooms, bell pepper, and onion to the pan. Saute until the vegetables are tender, about 10 minutes. Add the garlic and saute for another 30 seconds. Add the rice, almonds, 38 • OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2017

pumpkin, and broth. Stir in the sausage. Heat through. Allow the stuffing to cool. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butterfly the turkey tenderloins by cutting lengthwise from one side almost to, but not through, the opposite side. Using a meat mallet, flatten the tenderloins to about 1/3-inch thick. Spoon the filling on the tops of the flattened turkey tenderloins. Roll up each tenderloin, starting at the long edge. Tie each tenderloin with a few pieces of kitchen twine a couple of inches apart. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Roast stuffed tenderloins until the meat reached an internal temperature of 180 degrees, approximately 35 – 45 minutes. Let the tenderloins rest for 15 minutes before removing the kitchen twin and slicing into medallions. Serves 4-6

Pumpkin Rice Stuffed Turkey Tenderloin

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Pumpkin Spice Cheesecake


Pumpkin Spice Cheesecake with Hoodoo Chicory Liqueur Glaze About 40 gingersnap wafers (to yield 2 cups cookie crumbs) 1/4 cup packed light brown sugar 2-1/2 ounces (5 tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted and cooled For the filling: 2 pounds (four 8-ounce packages) cream cheese, at room temperature 1-1/3 cups packed light brown sugar 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg 1/4 teaspoon table salt 4 large eggs 2 large egg yolks 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract 1 (15-ounce) can pure solid-pack pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling) 1 cup unsalted butter 1/4 cup sugar 1/4 cup water 3 tablespoons Hoodoo Chicory Liqueur Position a rack in the middle of the oven. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. For the crust: Pulse the cookies and brown sugar in a food processor until the crumbs are fine. Transfer crumbs to a medium bowl; add the melted butter. Combine thoroughly, first with a spoon and then with your fingers, until the mixture is evenly moist and stays together when you squeeze it with your hand. Press the mixture evenly over the bottom and partway up the sides of a 9-inch springform pan. Chill for 5 minutes and then bake for 10 minutes. Let the crust cool completely. Leave the oven on. For the filling: Bring a large pot of water to a boil. In the meantime, beat the cream cheese until smooth. In a separate bowl, whisk together the brown sugar,

cinnamon, ginger, allspice, nutmeg, and salt. Add this mixture to the cream cheese. Beat until thoroughly combined, scraping down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed. Add the eggs and yolks one at a time. Make sure each egg is well incorporated before adding the next egg. Scrape down the bowl after each. Stir in the vanilla and pumpkin. Wrap the bottom of the springform pan in two layers of aluminum foil. Pour the batter into the cooled crust. The batter will come up past the crust and will fill the pan to the rim. Tap the pan gently once or twice on the counter to release any air bubbles. Set the pan in a larger baking dish or roasting pan, then add enough hot water to come about halfway up the sides of the springform pan. Carefully place the pan in the oven. Bake until the top of the cake looks deep golden and the center is set (the cake may just barely begin to crack), approximately 1 hour 35 minutes to 1 hour 45 minutes. The cake will jiggle a little bit when tapped. The top may rise a bit but will settle as it cools. Turn the oven off. Leave the door ajar and let the cheesecake cool to room temperature in the oven. Once it is cooled, cover and chill overnight. For the sauce: In a small saucepan combine butter, sugar, Hoodoo Chicory Liqueur and water over medium heat. Bring to a boil and simmer for 3-4 minutes stirring constantly to prevent any burns. Remove from heat and cool slightly. Drizzle glaze over each slice of cheesecake before serving Serves 8-10

Pumpkin Spice Chai Tea Latte

Mississippi Cold Drip Pumpkin Spice Chai Tea Latte 1/2 cup Mississippi Cold Drip Chai Tea concentrate 3/4 cup whole milk 1 tablespoon maple syrup 2 tablespoons pumpkin puree Whipped cream, optional Pinch ground cinnamon, optional Combine first four ingredients in a blender. Process until mixture is smooth. Garnish with whipped cream and cinnamon, if desired. Can be served hot or cold. Makes one latte eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 41

{ fresh from the farm }

Mushroom Magic Meet the Pearl River County Couple Living in the Magical World of Shroomdom

Tony and Leilani Rosenbaum are huge proponents of agritourism in Mississippi and show off products from local farms. 42 • OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2017

story and photography by julian brunt


here just might be more to Pearl River County than you think. Get off the beaten path, take the byways that meander through beautiful farm land and forested rolling hills, and if you are lucky enough to find your way down Sam Smith Road, and then Tom Chance Road, you just might find, at the end of a long and winding gravel road, the magical kingdom of Shroomdom. You may think I am making use of poetic license by calling this mushroom farm a kingdom, but that is because you have not met Leilani Rosenbaum and her husband, Tony. Within a few minutes of meeting Leilani, she was telling me about the three “M’s” of mushrooms: magical, mystical, and miraculous. And that was just the beginning of a very magical day. Shroomdom is a field-to-forest mushroom and organic garden farm. There are 14 known edible mushrooms that grow on this 160-acre place, plus a newly built grow room where cultivated mushrooms are raised. It is a very high-tech place with some serious environmental controls to make sure the conditions are just perfect for mushrooms to be happy and thrive. This place is about a lot more than just mushroom cultivation. A visit to Shroomdom might involve foraging wild mushrooms (make sure to bring boots and mosquito spray), a trip to the bee house where “the girls” are busy making honey in Slovenian AZ hives (and where you will find a bed in the loft above the humming hives), a visit to the 300-year-old “Castle Tree,” a soybean field planted for the bees to sup on the flowers, mushroom cultivation classes and a quick peek at the grow rooms, and some very technical information on how mushrooms grow. It may be that the above list doesn’t qualify as being magical in your book, but let me say it again, that’s because you have not met Leilani yet. When she meets you at the end of the driveway, your mushroom education will begin. Her passion for what she does is amazing and fascinating, as is her encyclopedic knowledge of all things mushrooms. Tony is in charge of the grow house, and he will quickly tell you that the mushrooms grow in bags of wheat straw, along with a few supplements, and that they will start pinning (just poking their heads out of the bags)

RIGHT Brown oyster mushroom BELOW - Inside the mushroom grow house

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when the conditions are just right and can double in size in just 24 hours. But that takes quite a bit of planning and controlling the environment. Mushrooms prefer blue and green light, like a moist environment, and produce enough CO2 that the rooms have to be vented at the floor level (CO2 is heavier than air and sinks). I can just barely touch on all the facts and figures that Leilani and Tony will toss at you, but what is truly remarkable is their passion for what they do and their commitment to their farm, Peral River County and the other farms there, and to Agritourism in the state of Mississippi. There could be no better spokespersons, and, if you want to sample the magic, you are just going to have to find your way down that winding gravel road yourself. edm Shroomdom 23 Rosenbaum Dr., Poplarville 601.795.2611

Pink flamingo mushroom


The castle tree is a hollow tree the Rosenbaums hauled from the woods and put in their yard.

What’s a Slovenian AZ Hive? This beehive im imported from Slovenia and is unique in the sense that the hive boxes open from the back. Typically, hive inspection requires lifting supers and broods (boxes that are part of the hives), and that can get tiring, especially for older beekeepers. Being able to simply pull out individual frames like in an AZ Hive makes colony inspection much easier for beekeepers, as well as the bees. This provides a faster and easier way for beekeepers to work with their hives. The AZ Hives are designed to fit into “bee houses” that expose the hive to the outside by only one side. On the outside of the hive, there are two openings for bees at the front of the hive which can be easily closed when the hive must be moved. Inside the hive, rear doors allow easy access to all frames on all levels. The biggest advantage of this is that supers and broods don’t have to be lifted because of the rear door. Frames can be easily pulled out one by one. Since hives are fitted into a “bee house,” it makes inspection easier and is not dependent on the weather.

Leilani Rosenbaum gives a tour of the bee house at Shroomdom.

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{ in the bloglight }


by kelsey wells lambert | photography by the olmsteads

ake Keiser, a self-proclaimed former city girl with no rural background, had never really thought of farm life as a possibility. Having lived in Tampa Bay, Florida, for over 15 years, she was tired of the relentless work pace, anxiety, and polluted air that come with city life. With a desire to live closer to nature and change her lifestyle, she packed her bags and moved to a farm in rural Oxford in November 2012. The transition from wearing Gucci to raising chickens, turkeys, and milk goats was a challenge for Keiser, but she loves the peacefulness of her new lifestyle. Keiser documents her experiences in rural living on her website, Visitors to the site can learn about Daffodil Hill Farm, Keiser’s home. They can also view animals that Keiser has for sale, contact her for more information about the farm, and read her blog documenting her adventures. Her blog posts include many stories about her animals and living and cooking in a rural area. Keiser admits that her move to the farm came with plenty


of challenges. She has a well and is responsible for her own water. Caring for animals properly and growing food in a garden are not easy tasks, and she admits that learning to garden was especially difficult when she thought it would be easy. She also admits that the physical isolation was a shock to her, coming from an area where people are in no short supply. In spite of the challenges, Keiser says that life on her farm has been very rewarding. She has learned to be creative and resourceful in order to solve problems. The fresh air and less stressful environment have been wonderful. She also says that her new lifestyle is “conducive” to cooking, often all day and from scratch. Her creative efforts have expanded to her kitchen, where she opens her doors and windows, using farm-fresh ingredients to cook up tasty dishes. She also values her food more now that she understands the time-consuming processes required to make products such as cheese. When living in the city, foods came prepackaged from an easily accessible grocery store. Now, she follows a different

recipe. “If I want to make lasagna, I have to milk the goats, filter the milk, and then make the cheese, make the sauce, etc. A pecan pie takes longer to make because I have to collect the pecans and shell them while trying not to eat them.” She also admits to buying eggs that came from “vegetarian fed” hens while living in the city. Now, she better understands a chicken’s diet and collects eggs from her free range hens. As she continues her work on her farm and begins sharing her lifestyle with visitors, she also plans to continue the Gucci

to Goats website and work on a book to help others better understand rural living. Responses to her blog posts have been positive, and many have requested recipes when she posts food-related articles. She admits that her “mad scientist” cooking methods make food posts and recipes more difficult. Through all of her work, Keiser wants to show rural lifestyles just as they are. As she said, “I enjoy helping people gain insight into this lifestyle, the good, bad, and ugly parts.” edm

Cajeta – Goat Milk Caramel Sauce 2 quarts whole milk 2 cups sugar (I use organic, but any granulated sugar works) 1/2 teaspoon baking soda, dissolved into 1 tablespoon milk 1 to 2 teaspoons vanilla Salt, optional (I use this for salted caramel – add this slowly and to taste) Add the milk and sugar to a large (preferably tall) pot and bring to slow, rolling boil. Once it’s simmering well, remove from heat and slowly add the baking soda mix. Usually it will bubble up and can often double in size, which is why you want a large pot.

Once the mixture has settled, put it back on the heat and stir often while you cook down the mixture. You’ll start to see it thicken and turn caramel color. I usually use medium to medium high heat, but I prefer a slower process and tend to keep it a more to medium. This process can easily take an hour or longer. When the caramel is the consistency of syrup you can add the vanilla (and salt), remove from the heat. It will thicken a bit as it cools. I add it to jars before it cools for ease of pouring. Depending upon how much you reduce the sauce, it usually makes three small jars of sauce. Sometimes I have an extra quarter jar. eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 47

{ from mississippi to beyond }

Window Into Italy Jackson Native Elaine Trigiani Connects Travelers to Italian Food Producers and Wine Makers


By Kathy K. Martin | photography by Claudio Tajoli

n extended stay in Sicily for work in 1998 led Mississippi-native Elaine Trigiani to permanently move to Italy. “I was so fascinated with the climate, the sea, the sunny disposition of Sicilians and with olive oil, so pure, versatile, good for you and with intriguing varietal differences.” For these many reasons, she now works to use gastronomy as a window into the culture. “Creating food is an art form linked to culture,” said Trigiani, “so I feel a connection between what I do now and my years growing up in Mississippi.” Trigiani grew up in Jackson, where her family instilled in her an appreciation for culture and the arts. Her SicilianAmerican grandfather founded an architecture studio. Her grandmother was a painter. Her parents were friends with all types of artists and craftsmen. This atmosphere, she said, gave her an appreciation for culture expressed through art. “My mother also instilled in me a curiosity for foodways, eating and being in a kitchen.” When she was just a little girl she remembers her mother taking her to the farmers’ market on Woodrow Wilson, sending her to the back porch to shell beans, teaching her to bake bread, and making sure she was an open-minded eater. She attended the University of Notre Dame, the alma mater of both her father and grandfather, and after a brief volunteer job teaching high school in New York City, she moved to Washington, D.C. She received her master’s degree in art history there. After an internship with the National Gallery of Art, where she worked with the curator of Renaissance paintings, she landed a job in the exhibition office, where she organized temporary exhibitions. “I had the great good fortune to work side-by-side with some of the more influential figures in the museum world in both the U.S. and abroad.” Food and wine, she said, were ever-present topics of conversation with colleagues as they traveled. She also ran a small catering company with some of her museum friends. However, she admits that she didn’t flourish at a desk job. After 10 years living and working in the capital, she decided to try another way of life. Moving to Italy was really a lifestyle decision. The pace of life and people’s priorities suited her 48 • OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2017

personality and her goals better than office politics and the big-city rat race. Today, she introduces travelers to artisanal food producers and wine makers who work with natural methods rooted in the traditions of their specific place. She has discovered that this is a great way to understand the culture. From there, she creates culinary excursions and full itineraries for small groups of curious travelers and leads guided tastings and cooking lessons. She said that creating recipes becomes an automatic byproduct of her work. “When you are surrounded by all the parts,

eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 49

Tea time in Elaine Trigiani’s dining room.

For a taste of home, Elaine Trigiani keeps a roll of cheese straw dough in her freezer.

recipes just present themselves.” In addition, Trigiani helps people with travel planning and has written guide books to Sicily. She even conducts archival research for genealogy enthusiasts and people who are preparing citizenship applications. Her favorite ingredients for cooking are those that bring clean, bright flavors to really simple foods and create a unified picture. “My favorite ingredient of the moment is lemon zest. It’s a sprinkle of sunlight.” One of her favorite foods is a milky white pillow of mozzarella topped with a cured anchovy and lemon zest. She said that the wines of Campania are magical with mozzarella, which is made in the same area and contrasts brilliantly. “I also like simple things like the crunch of toasted breadcrumbs on pasta, but I admit that I am picky and use only bread crumbs from bread that was made from flour stoneground from heritage wheat varieties and pasta from that same flour.” She also likes strong flavors like capers, oregano and colatura di alici (Italian fish sauce made from anchovies). The people who enjoy her culinary travel programs are open-minded travelers who are looking for an unexpected look at Italy. “I take people to places where they can’t easily go by themselves and I open the door. You can peek through the door or you can walk through the door. It’s up to you.” When she returns to Mississippi, she savors her mother’s biscuits and blueberry pie. She also craves butter beans with cornbread, softshell crabs at the Mayflower Café in Jackson, boiled peanuts, and fried catfish with hushpuppies. She continues to keep pecans and a roll of cheese straw dough in

her freezer for a taste of home. She hopes that the U.S. will move beyond industrial foods and a fascination with food trends to buying and eating food more intentionally. She believes that this decision will encourage citizens to use their brains and their forks with their best interests and health at heart. She said that eating deliberately encourages people to choose foods that are in their own best interests both for flavor and health, while actively showing respect for farmers, the local economy, and the environment. “My programs in Italy are designed to teach people about how foods are grown and made, and how to taste them so they are able to distinguish real food from the industrially-produced imitations.” Her next big project is an estate in Sicily that combines hospitality in a design hotel with a demonstration kitchen and a state-of-the-art olive mill for production of olive oil. She hopes to offer enogastronomic tourism in a location with wide views of the Mediterranean Sea and access to the best of the island’s natural landscape and beaches, ancient monuments, and artisan food and wine production. She believes that the area is about to explode and she wants to get involved from the beginning. “I’m ready to be on the production end of things. Since my maternal ancestors emigrated from Sicily, it feels like going back to my roots and it’s the culmination of everything I believe in.” edm


Baked Ricotta by Elaine Trigiani

I stole this recipe from the sister of a Sicilian winemaker. Turn a form of fresh sheep’s milk ricotta out onto a layer of lemon leaves and bake it at 350 degrees until it sets like a custard and just turns toasty on top. Dress it with salt, olive oil, oregano, and lemon zest. Serve it just warm or at room

temperature. Lemon leaves under heat are resistant, but they release a delicate lemony perfume. You can also cook meatballs on the grill, sandwiched between lemon leaves. That idea I stole from an inventive, creative chef who lives on Mt. Etna.

Elaine Trigiani’s dining room eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 51

{ from the bookshelf }

What Can I Bring? Southern Food for Any Occasion Life Serves Up By Elizabeth Heiskell Published by Oxmoor House


by paige mckay

o matter what type of event or gathering you get invited to, the first question you typically ask is, “What can I bring?” Mississippi Delta native Elizabeth Heiskell now has you covered for whatever you get invited to next with her cookbook What Can I Bring?, based on the popular Southern Living magazine monthly feature of the same name. Whether it be a tailgate, wedding shower, or potluck dinner, you’re sure to find the best and most delicious dishes in Heiskell’s collection of recipes. This cookbook is loaded with dips, salads, drinks, casseroles, hot dishes, desserts – you name it, it’s there. With over 100 recipes, you’ll never run out of dishes to make. For those who don’t cook, Heiskell also includes ideas that don’t even require a stove or spoon, so ultimately anyone can tackle the recipes in this cookbook. What Can I Bring? differs from other cookbooks in the way that it isn’t divided into the typical sections like appetizers, salads, desserts, and other meal categories. Instead, they are categorized by different occasions to go along with the theme of the book. Chapters range from Potluck, Bringing Baby Home, Road Trip Roadies, Weekend Getaway, Dinner with Friends, Boys Will Be Boys, Four Quarters and Food, Under the Weather, and Moving Day. Whatever the occasion, Heiskell’s got you covered. With it being football season, Four Quarters and Food is the place to look to find the next hit for


your tailgate or watch party at home. The Hangover Sliders, Caramelized Onion Dip, Sorority Girl Pasta Salad, and Mississippi Mud Brownies are just a few of the featured recipes in this section. Score big at your next tailgate with these recipes, along with many others. This cookbook is also a must-have for those holiday gatherings that will be here before you know it. Impress everyone at your holiday dinners this season with a dish from Heiskell’s collection. Dinner with Friends and Potluck chapters of What Can I Bring? are loaded with mouthwatering, Southern dishes that are perfect for the occasion. Cola Brown Ham, Yoste Roast, Sausage and White Cheddar Pinwheels, and Chocolate Chip Bundt Cake only scratch the surface of what these chapters include. No holiday gathering will be complete without at least one of these dishes from What Can I Bring? Not only does What Can I Bring? have you covered for your next get together, but Heiskell also includes meals for weeknight family dinners that even the pickiest kids will find appetizing. The Best Lasagna Ever, Chicken Enchiladas, and Vegetable Beef Stew are just a few meals that can also be served at your own dinner table. What Can I Bring? is a perfect addition to your cookbook stack. It has the perfect mix of main dishes, desserts, and everything in between, and you’ll never run out of ideas when it comes to making a dish for whatever get-together comes up or your next family dinner. edm

Pasta Jambalaya One-pot dishes are brilliant at the hunting camp. Heat and serve, no cleanup. That way they can get back to what’s important at the hunting camp: drinking scotch, cleaning guns, and talking about how much they miss their wives. Serves 6 1 (1-pound) package penne pasta 3 tablespoons olive oil 1 pound large raw shrimp, peeled and deveined 6 teaspoons Cajun seasoning 12 ounces boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch pieces 1 pound andouille sausage, cut into 1⁄2-inch slices 1⁄2 cup chopped yellow onion (from 1 small onion) 1⁄2 cup chopped green bell pepper (from 1 bell pepper) 1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic (about 3 garlic cloves) 1⁄2 cup chicken stock 1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes, undrained 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves 1⁄2 cup heavy cream 1 ounce fresh Parmesan cheese, grated with a Microplane grater (about 2⁄3 cup) 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil

sausage, onion, and bell pepper. Cook, stirring often, until the sausage is browned and the vegetables are tender, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic; cook 1 minute. Add the stock, and cook 30 seconds, stirring and scraping to loosen browned bits from the bottom of the Dutch oven. Add the tomatoes, thyme, and remaining 2 teaspoons Cajun seasoning; cook about 2 minutes. Stir in the heavy cream. Add the shrimp, chicken, pasta, and reserved 1 cup cooking water to the Dutch oven; toss to combine. Cook until the mixture is thoroughly heated and the sauce thickens, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from the heat, and add the Parmesan and basil; toss to combine. Excerpted from What Can I Bring? by Elizabeth Heiskell. Copyright © 2017 Oxmoor House. Reprinted with permission from Time Inc. Books, a division of Time Inc. New York, NY. All rights reserved.

Cook the pasta in salted water according to the package directions until al dente. Drain the pasta, reserving 1 cup cooking water; keep warm. Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high. Sprinkle the shrimp with 2 teaspoons of the Cajun seasoning, and add to the Dutch oven. Cook, stirring occasionally, just until the shrimp turn pink, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a plate. Add 1 tablespoon of the oil to the Dutch oven; sprinkle the chicken with 2 teaspoons of the Cajun seasoning. Add the chicken to the Dutch oven, and cook, turning to brown on all sides, until done, about 5 minutes. Transfer the chicken to the plate with the shrimp. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon oil to Dutch oven; add the eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 53

{ raise your glass }

Warm & Comforting vanilla steamer

As leaves fall and temperatures cool, put a warm and comforting twist on your morning by incorporating autumn flavors into a glass of milk. Plus, it’s a nutritious way to kick-start a great fall day.

8 ounces milk 1 tablespoon honey or sugar 1 teaspoon vanilla extract Warm milk and honey or sugar in a saucepan over medium heat until steaming. Off heat, stir in the vanilla. Pour into a mug and serve. Makes one serving.

maple steamer 8 ounces milk 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup Warm milk and maple syrup in a saucepan over medium heat until steaming. Pour into a mug and serve. Makes one serving.


gingerbread steamer 8 ounces milk 2 tablespoons molasses 2 tablespoons brown sugar 1/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice Warm all ingredients in a saucepan over medium heat until steaming. Pour into a mug and serve. Makes one serving. Recipes courtesy of Milkpep


On a Roll Gourmet Egg Rolls -

Dino’s Grocery Rosedale


The Hills The Delta -

CommodoreStarkville Bob’s Yacht Club The Pines

- SaltiJackson ne Restaurant -



Our wonderful state is divided into five travel regions - The Hills, The Delta, The Pines, Capital/River, and Coastal. It is our goal to give equal coverage to all regions of the state in every issue. The following sections are color coded by region for your convenience. We hope you will take the time and travel to all regions to take advantage of the diverse culinary styles present throughout our state. We do suggest that you call to verify operating hours before visiting any of these wonderful establishments.

Charred -

Ocean Springs


eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 55

The Hills

ABOVE - V’s Viva la Veggie egg roll with a side of rice BELOW - Lisa Blackmon-Miller drops egg rolls in the deep fryer to be cooked.


The Hills

On a Roll Gourmet Egg Rolls 2028 University Ave., Oxford • 662.715.0011 •


story and photography by Brittany Brown

nside a small pop-up kitchen where two other restaurants On a Roll runs on love and family. Most people employed reside is On a Roll Gourmet Egg Rolls. The ultimate result with the egg roll business are either family or close family of a family recipe, On a Roll offers egg rolls in a nonfriends. The staff splits the kitchen time with two other traditional manner. Don’t think Asian cuisine. Think of all your restaurant businesses during the work week. favorite foods rolled up and deep fried. “It’s been a challenge being in a pop-up restaurant,” “What keeps people coming back are most definitely the Blackmon-Miller said. “I have a storage area. I shop weekly and fillings. They’re so unique. It’s familiar things in a different way. bring things in for prep. I work with two other ladies and we People like the familiar,” said Lisa Blackmon-Miller, all-in-one really don’t interfere with each other.” owner, operator, But Blackmonand cook at On a Miller said Roll. working alongside The range of family makes it fillings are endless. worthwhile. From cookie dough “Working and cheesecake, with family, it’s shrimp and beef, interesting. Me to taco and cheese and my husband steak, these egg are a regular rolls offer new married couple, cuisine to satisfy but it’s really fun any food fancy. The working with rolls are normally him, my friends, paired with fried and my sorority rice or crinkle fries sisters. They bring to make a meal. a different part,” Altogether, On she said. “They’re a Roll has over 30 my lifeline in this different flavors in business. They Lisa Blackmon-Miller poses with her new food trailer. its arsenal to offer keep me in the on any given work loop. They keep day, but Blackmon-Miller normally offers about five different me grounded. It’s a challenge, but it’s also a blessing to be able egg roll flavors per week. to work alongside people that you know and trust.” The newest flavor to hit the On a Roll kitchen, Robin’s Roll, Blackmon-Miller has exciting plans in the works for On a is filled with beef, shrimp, and other surprise ingredients. It is Roll. By mid-to-late October, the restaurant is expected to have named after one of Blackmon-Miller’s family members. fully transitioned from the three-way shared pop-up kitchen “The original recipe itself is kind of a family recipe. I got it into their own food trailer. The dark blue and lime green trailer from my sister-in-law,” Blackmon-Miller said. “She taught me will bring with it extended hours, hence the hope for more how to make it. She was getting deployed to Afghanistan, and customers, more work hours, and a wider variety of egg rolls they still wanted them while she was gone.” offered. eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 57

The Hills

ABOVE - An egg roll dinner is receiving its final touches before being given to the customer. LEFT - Lisa Blackmon-Miller and her staff prepare an order swiftly.


The Hills “I hope to hire some outside people. My family is here as a support system, but they are coming here from their outside jobs,” she said. “I want to hire other people to work lunch and late nights once we get the food truck going. Family will still always be around. I’m going to need somebody around to help me train.” While the exterior of the trailer is completed, the interior is still being finalized. “Right now, we’re just hoping to get the interior done of the trailer. We have to do a good job on the interior of the trailer. We want to do the best job to serve our customers,” Blackmon-Miller said. “We just spent a pretty penny on a new suppression system. We just want to be safe. We want to do it right the first time around.” After moving to the food truck, Blackmon-Miller has high expectations for On a Roll. “The trailer is in the works. I’m really excited about that because we’ll be more visual other than two nights at our popup restaurant. I really want to do late nights,” she said. “I really want to come for the chicken-on-a-stick. I want to replace the

Cookie Dough and Cheesecake Egg Rolls with chocolate and caramel dipping sauce

chicken-on-a-stick here in Oxford. I want everyone to come to Oxford looking for late night foods and looking for egg rolls,” She is prepared for the challenge. Blackmon-Miller and her family always experiment with different egg roll recipes. She said they are just looking for ways to grow and improve. “It kind of puts me on a high to keep going when people are saying the food is good. How can I make this the greatest thing you’ve ever tasted?” she said. “I keep a pack of egg rolls at home, so whatever I’m cooking for dinner, I’m going to see if I can stuff it in an egg roll. I want people to be happy when they’re eating this because it’s made with love,” BlackmonMiller said. From the family ambience to the refreshing food choices, On a Roll does not stop there. Blackmon-Miller said the restaurant represents a greater purpose, and she hopes to spread a positive mission with On a Roll. “I want to offer mentorship to young ladies to hone in that passion,” she said. “People are creating their own paths. I’ve created my own. I don’t want to just feed my pockets. I want to feed the spirit and feed the soul.” edm

photo by anne morgan carney

eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 59

The Delta

Bacon-wrapped Salmon


Dino’s Grocery

The Delta

1310 Main St., Rosedale • 662.734.5055

story and photography by Coop Cooper/A.K.A. The Small Town Critic


irectly off of the south end of Main Street in Rosedale – which also happens to be Mississippi Highway 1 – stands an inconspicuous building just a stone’s throw from the Ol’ Man River. As you enter the place, you notice a few unique things such as the bar counter made of carefully-placed beer bottle caps of various brands, suspended in a clear shellac. There are also paintings and other artwork hanging on the walls, made by Mississippi artists, and posters for the local Crossroads Blues and Heritage festival held every May in Rosedale. There are also comfortable, homey touches such as checkered picnic-style tablecloths and string lights hanging from the wooden ceiling, not to mention the mouth-watering aroma of steak, seafood, and good, Southern cooking coming from the steam-filled kitchen.

That building is Dino’s Grocery, owned and operated by Cleveland native Joey Lamb, who started working in the restaurant business in his high school days. “I needed an after school job so I started working at this little steak house in town,” says Lamb. “I went to Delta State, went to Moorhead, and had no idea what I wanted to do. I was still working in restaurants the whole time, so I started picking around online and found this school out in Breckenridge, Colorado, called Colorado Mountain College that had a culinary program. So I went out there, went to school for three years and moved to Nashville at the end of 2002.” Lamb worked at three or four restaurants in Nashville as a sous chef, dishwasher, and executive chef until 2012 when he moved back to Cleveland. “I worked in Merigold at Crawdad’s for four and a half

eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 61

The Delta

Crab Cake with Melon and Cilantro years, then I bought this place,” says Lamb. “I leased Crawdad’s for three years. I was the proprietor, but I never owned it. This is the first place I’ve owned and operated on my own.” Lamb’s family is originally from Rosedale and the surrounding areas of Beulah and Cleveland. “My brother, Dino, lived in Rosedale and I used to come here growing up as a child when this building was the River Run Cafe, then Blue Levee, Leo’s on the Levee as it went through different owners. With Cleveland having so many spots to eat, you get outside of there and there’s not much... I saw an opportunity, and jumped on it. I wanted to give the Delta something outside of the city,” says Lamb. Dino’s Grocery sees a lot of locals, farmers, destination eaters from nearby counties, and tourists passing through to check out the Mississippi Blues Trail markers. The nearest marker is dedicated to Robert Johnson, who immortalized the town in his song “Traveling Riverside Blues;” which was dedicated to the juke houses of Bruce Street, an active scene before the county’s population began to decline in the 1930s. Another nearby marker just down the road on Main Street mentions the connection of the popularity of local hot tamales and the connection of the traditional Mexican dish to soul food and the blues in the town of Rosedale. Lamb describes the food at Dino’s Grocery as ‘Southern comfort cuisine’. “I don’t get too fancy because my customers aren’t. I don’t see the need for fine dining in this area of the Delta just yet. I just try to stick to comfort food, simple food. The menu’s very 62 • OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2017

simple, we’ve got twelve entrees, four appetizers... not very complex. It’s easy to understand. I base my menu around what my customers want and what they’ll appreciate and not try to break their pocketbook at the same time,” says Lamb. The Dino’s Grocery lunch menu offers classic sandwiches such as the Reuben, Ham and Swiss with garlic aioli on sourdough, Fried Chicken Sandwich (plus a ‘Buffalo’ variety) including chicken strips with trimmings on a sourdough bun, Cuban sandwiches, cheeseburgers, and a patty melt. Nonsandwich options include a steak quesadilla with peppers and onion, chicken tenders, caesar salads, and spinach salads. Fries, potato salad, and side salads are also available as sides. The dinner menu adds appetizers to the mix with New Orleans Style BBQ Shrimp, Zucchini & Feta Fritters, Crab Cake with melon and cilantro, Fried Mushrooms, Fried Green Tomatoes with creole mustard and bacon remoulade, a caesar salad, and ‘Biggie’s Drop Salad’ with romaine lettuce, red onion, olives, grape tomatoes, cucumber, bacon, Parmesan cheese, and vinaigrette. The entrées up the ante with an 8-ounce filet mignon topped with mushroom ragout, a 20-ounce ribeye also topped with mushroom ragout, a 16-ounce Herb and Garlic Marinated New York Strip, Blackened Catfish and Grits, Skillet Chicken half deboned and pan seared/roasted, Rosemary Braised Pork, Herb-crusted Mahi Mahi, Bacon-wrapped Salmon, Hamburger Steak with onions and gravy, Fried Shrimp, as well as the cheeseburger from the lunch menu. Customers can also choose from these dinner sides: fries, twice baked potato, Brussels

The Delta sprouts, grits, mashed potatoes, and green beans. Of course, mouth-watering specials are offered weekly. When Lamb left for culinary school, he originally had no intention of moving back to Mississippi. “When I moved, I told myself I’d never move back, I’m done with that place. There’s nothing there. There’s no opportunity. You can’t grow. You can’t make a living there... But I guess I’m in the same boat as everyone else who moved off. Something about this place brings you back every time. I got family here, my dad, my brothers are married, I got nieces and nephews. It’s comfortable being around family,” says Lamb. “I’m here. I’m not going anywhere else.” Lamb is quick to point out that even though all of his family is nearby, none of them work for him in at Dino’s Grocery. “Family and business never works out,” laughs Lamb. “I don’t want to have to fire them.” As mentioned before, Dino’s Grocery is named after Lamb’s brother, but there is a deeper meaning as to why he named the restaurant after ‘Dino’. “My older brother passed away in 2014. I bought the place a year after he passed away. With him growing up here and living here his whole life, I figured it would be a good way to remember him by, naming the restaurant after him,” says Lamb. Lamb is satisfied with Dino’s Grocery for the moment, but he does have ideas to possibly open new restaurants in the future. “This is pretty much it right now, but I’ve got some things

in my mind as far as opening other business, other restaurants, but with everything going on in Cleveland these days with the Grammy Museum and these hotels they’re building... I’m gonna sit back and let them do their thing. See what works, see what’s not gonna work, and then go from there.” Dino’s Grocery accepts reservations and serves beer, but also accepts brown-bagged wine and spirits. edm

Tuna Fettucine

New Orleans-style BBQ Shrimp eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 63

The Pines

Whole Steamed Blue Crab

Lewinsky and Bramble cocktails 64 • OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2017

The Pines

Commodore Bob’s Yacht Club

102 Rue du Grand Fromage Stes C & D, Starkville • 662.268.8326 • story and photography by paige mckay


ocated just a little of the beaten path of the bustling Cotton District in Starkville, you’ll find a restaurant like no other place in town. Commodore Bob’s Yacht Club sits in its own little world just behind the bar scene of the Cotton District. For the last three years, Commodore Bob’s has been serving up fresh, made-to-order meals and cocktails that are nothing short of impressive. The entire menu at Commodore Bob’s is exceptional, and you’d be hard pressed to find anything like it elsewhere in Starkville. Head Chef Caleb Nabors describes the style of food at Commodore Bob’s as “world cuisine.” No other restaurant in town claims that title or serves up meals as unique as Commodore Bob’s. The menu is a bit more upscale – something you really don’t find in the Cotton District area. Everything in their kitchen is locally-sourced and made fresh daily by Nabors and his staff. Even fresh herbs are grown on site. On the menu, you can find lighter appetizers like Buffalo Chicken Dip, Street Corn, or a classic Charcuterie Plate. Seasonal specials are also available, like the end-ofsummer Caprese Style Tomato Tart. This tart is loaded with fresh tomatoes, cheese, and a delicious balsamic glaze. With a name like Commodore Bob’s, you can expect a seafoodheavy main course menu. The Seafood Cioppino is one of the most popular dishes. This massive dish is loaded with Chef Caleb Nabors fresh lobster,

mussels, shrimp, scallops, and a rich tomato sauce. Chef Nabors said they are also known for their steaks, fish tacos, lobster and shrimp mac and cheese, and oysters. The menu isn’t just limited to seafood, though. Sandwiches, soups, and salads are also available. For dessert, the Cheesecake Bars are to die for. Chef Nabors puts his spin on traditional cheesecake by using sheep’s milk in his recipe, and it is divine. The best part about this cheesecake is that the crust is not an ordinary graham cracker crust. Instead, it’s made from a Biscoff Cookie, the airline cookie. It’s even better as a cheesecake crust than it is on a Delta flight. The Cheesecake Bar is light, decadent, and everything a good cheesecake should be. Another form of pie is served for dessert, but in drink form. The Key Lime Pie Martini is perfect if you want to sip on an after-dinner treat. The rest of the cocktails made by mixologist Brady Hindman are nothing short of extraordinary. With Hindman’s skills behind the bar, you’d be doing yourself a disservice to not order a specialty cocktail. The Bramble is a crowd favorite, which includes gin, crème de mûre, simple syrup, and lemon. You name it, he can make it. Hindman says that he learns by trial and error – learns what works and what doesn’t. He and Nabors have both found what works, and they do it well. The food and drinks don’t stop on Sundays. Commodore Bob’s has become a popular spot for Sunday brunch. eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 65

The Pines


The Pines

OPPOSITE PAGE - New York-style Cheesecake TOP - Caprese-style Tomato Tart ABOVE - Seafood Cioppino

Bottomless mimosas, big-as-your-plate omelets, and chicken and waffles on a stick only scratch the surface of what the brunch menu offers. The bottomless mimosas are becoming increasingly popular amongst the college crowd. The covered pack porch is the perfect place for a large group to hang out on a Sunday afternoon and sip mimosas. Decoratively, Commodore Bob’s keeps with the “commodore” and boating theme. Boat-related posters line the walls, and wooden boats sit on the shelf area between the booths. It’s a very clean and modern space, with metal chairs and concrete tables throughout. The covered front porch is a great place to relax and sip a drink while looking out toward the Cotton District. The space is cozy, but not too tight, and has an open kitchen and open bar concept with plenty of natural light pouring in. A favorite thing for diners, other than the food, is watching it while it’s being prepared. When sitting at the bar, you are looking directly into the kitchen and can watch everything be made right in front of you. Something else to acknowledge about Nabors and his staff is their passion. The staff at Commodore Bob’s is consisted of all culinary students from area colleges, so they are driven and devoted to what they do. They take pride in what they produce and are committed to making the dining experience top-notch. If you’re in Starkville for work, play, school, or whatever it may be, Commodore Bob’s should without a doubt be on your lists of places to grab a bite to eat. Date night, business lunch, or casual drinks, this is the place to go. Give this hidden gem a visit one time, and it surely won’t be your last. edm eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 67

Capital/River LEFT - Nelson’s Blood cocktail BELOW - Lobster Roll and House-made Chips



Saltine Restaurant 622 Duling Ave., Jackson • 601.982.2899 •


story by Lisa LaFontaine Bynum | photography by paige mckay

f it were possible to magically teleport a newcomer right into the middle of the dining room at Saltine Restaurant, then ask them to guess where they were, what do you think they might say? Give them a minute to get their bearings. Let their eyes pass over the light, thin planked wooden floors, the clean white subway tiles, and the oyster shell accent over the oyster bar. Rustic exposed brick and weathered corrugated tin lend an industrial feel, while large nautical themed murals give you the impression you’ve landed in a coastal city along the Atlantic Ocean. Our visitor might guess Boston or a fishing village along the coast of Maine. Chances are, they would never guess the Fondren District in Jackson, Mississippi. Saltine is among a handful of restaurants that have helped put the Fondren District back on the map. Within the last seven years, the community has witnessed significant urban renewal. Restaurants, boutiques, and businesses are setting up shop and bringing new life to the nostalgic, mid-century modern storefronts that line the streets. Saltine itself is housed in a wing of the former Lorena Duling school, which served as a public school for the community and later the city of Jackson from 1927 until 2005. Today, the Fondren neighborhood is considered Jackson’s arts and entertainment district. Saltine is right in the heart of it. True to its name, Saltine is first and foremost a modern-day oyster bar. Its name is derived from the simple saltine crackers

commonly served with seafood. Patrons can pull up a bar stool at the crescent-shaped raw bar where staff members are quickly and skillfully shucking fresh oysters imported from the Gulf of Mexico, east and west coasts, and Canada. If slurping down a few dozen plump, briny, raw oysters on the half shell doesn’t appeal to you, try them grilled in their wood-fired oven. Trust us, a half dozen wood-fired Oysters Lafitte just isn’t enough. After sampling a smoky oyster topped with salty bacon, Parmesan, and crawfish tails, you’ll wish you had ordered another dozen. Saltine wouldn’t be a true Southern seafood restaurant without a few fried options. However, this is not your typical fried seafood platter. Try the fried oysters dipped in creamy feta dressing or tangy comeback sauce. For those truly brave and adventurous diners, order them Nashville Hot. They are not for the faint of heart. Frequent diners know the Seared Pork Belly is another

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uniquely Southern menu item you have to try at least once. The seared pork belly is sprinkled with boiled peanuts and drizzled with pepper jelly. Staying true to its Southern roots, you’ll find traditional items like Shrimp and Grits and Gumbo (made with alligator meat and andouille sausage). They also offer modern favorites such as Smoked Tuna Dip with Old Bay twice-smoked saltines for dipping and Feta Mozz Gratin served with a gyro-spiced ground lamb. All this can be washed down with an impressive selection of craft beers, but do inquire about their punch of the day. After dinner, you’ll want something light for dessert. Saltine’s Key Lime Tart is made with a saltine cracker crust served alongside bourbon-barrel-aged vanilla beer ice cream. Southerners love their brunch, and Saltine definitely answers the call. The Scotch Egg is a must try – a soft boiled egg is wrapped in maple breakfast sausage then fried. It’s served over creamy Grit Girl grits, garnished with cabbage and pepper jelly. If you prefer something on the sweeter side, the ooey, gooey, homemade cinnamon roll will be right up your alley. It’s topped with cream cheese icing, caramel sauce, and candied pecans. Don’t forget to order a mimosa from the bar. It’s no surprise that in the three years Saltine has been open, it has been named a “Top 50 Best New Restaurant” by Bon Appetit, “Top 10 Best Oyster House in the South” and “Best New Restaurant to Watch in the South” by Southern Living. The next time you are in Jackson or find yourself strolling the sidewalks of Fondren, stop into Saltine for a true Southern seafood experience. edm Seared Pork Belly 70 • OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2017


ABOVE - Wood-fired Oysters, BELOW LEFT - Fried Shrimp Po Boy and French Fries, BELOW RIGHT - Outdoor seating

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a steak & oyster bar 1019 Government St., Ocean Springs • 228.447.3928 •

Filet with demi-glace sauce





harred may be all about steaks and oysters, but at the heart of this great restaurant is Chef Milton Joachim. It’s not easy to pin down his style exactly, but the classical French background (Cordon Bleu Culinary School) and his upbringing in St. Bernard Parish, just outside of New Orleans, makes for an obvious and a delightful combination. Perhaps one of the most iconic dishes on his menu is the filet steak, served on a bed of garlic mashed potatoes, asparagus, and a splash of made-from-scratch demi-glace sauce. The mashed potatoes obviously speak of Chef Milton’s Southern heritage, and the demi, perhaps the hardest to make and most delicious sauce of the classical sauces (a three-day process) is about as French as you can get. I can name the restaurants on one hand that still make demi from scratch, and Milton’s is stunningly good.

Charred is also well known for its oysters. Milton is an outdoorsman and he can shuck oysters with the best of them, but his time is spent in front of a roaring stove, making sure every order goes out just as he likes it, – and he is demanding, ask his kitchen staff. You can get oysters six different ways at Charred: raw, chargrilled, Rockefeller, Bacon and Bleu, Sweet and Spicy or a combination of the five. It would be hard to pick the best, as all are delicious. Chef Milton has earned his chops, as the restaurant lingo goes, starting with his first professional gig working for Chef Wolfgang Puck. After Cordon Bleu, it was Commanders Palace in NOLA, then Stella with Chef Scott Boswell, followed by almost two years as a private chef, then he helped open Carrollton Market, Hampson St., New Orleans, before moving to Charred in downtown Ocean Springs.

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Redfish Almondine


Coastal Charred sits in the very heart of the quickly growing Ocean Springs entertainment district. Surrounded by dozens of great restaurants that feature everything from Vietnamese cuisine to Southern barbecue, this is a tough town to open a restaurant in, but Milton’s’ philosophy of making every dish on the menu, from sides to main courses, the absolute best he can has earned him, and Charred, a stellar reputation. Milton once told me that “if I am going to have mashed potatoes on the menu, they are going to be the best dammed mashed potatoes you have ever had.” But Charred is not all steaks and oysters. Take a look at the menu and you might be surprised to find Thai chili shrimp, friend duck wings with a spicy sauce, fried green tomatoes that will knock your socks off, and one of the best cheese burgers I have ever had. A great restaurant is all

about paying attention to details, and if Chef Milton has a mantra, that is it. When you visit Ocean Springs and are in the mood for a classy little restaurant, centrally located (plenty of parking behind the restaurant), make sure to stop by Charred. edm

ABOVE - Chef Milton Joachim prepares dishes in the hot kitchen at Charred. BELOW - Charred Burger

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{ featured event }

Chow Down at The Great Mississippi River Balloon Race in Natchez



story by paige mckay

he sky above Natchez will soon be decorated with hot air balloons, and live music will carry throughout the grounds of Rosalie Mansion. The 32nd annual Great Mississippi River Balloon Race will be held in Natchez October 20th-22nd at the historic Rosalie Mansion, on bluffs high above the Mississippi River. What started in 1986 with just a few balloons in a field behind the Natchez Mall has now become one of the largest festivals in Southwest Mississippi. It all began with a lunch between James Biglane, Cappy Stahlman, and Ron Riches. Biglane and Stahloman shared their balloon experiences with Riches and suggested that Natchez should have a balloon race. The first race was held six weeks later. Now in its 32nd year, the Great Mississippi River Balloon Race will include a carnival, live music, arts and crafts booths, and of course, good eats. Local vendors will serve up regional culinary treats and classic fair foods, plus there will be an Oktoberfest-style bier garden, called Blufftoberfest, featuring a variety of regional craft beers. The three-day event kicks off on Friday, October 20th, at 7 a.m. with a morning balloon flight. The festival gates will open at 6 p.m. Friday evening with a balloon glow to follow at 7 p.m. Fireworks will light up the sky at 7:30, followed by a concert. Saturday and Sunday’s events go on all day long, with bands throughout each day and afternoon balloon flights both afternoons. Gates open at 11 on Saturday and noon on Sunday – just in time for lunch at the fairgrounds. One of the best parts of any festival is the food. Local vendors will set up shop on the grounds and will be serving classic fair munchies and other local eats. Classic festival foods

like funnel cakes, nachos, corn dogs, snow cones, chickenon-a-stick, and onion rings will be available, as well as Cajun and seafood dishes. Alligator-on-a-stick, redfish, Cajun stew, seafood pockets, Louisiana crab cakes, jambalaya, red beans and rice, crawfish cornbread, and shrimp baskets are just a few of the other items you can fill up on at the balloon race. Some of the vendors for this year include Magnolia Grill, Southern Treats, Johnny’s Pizza, Slick Rick’s, and other catering groups from around the state. You’re sure to find a thing or two to munch on while you hang out and watch the balloons fill the Natchez sky. While you’re chowing down on chicken-on-a-stick and funnel cakes, staying hydrated is key. Four southern craft breweries will put their best brews on tap inside the Blufftoberfest tent and organize Oktoberfest-style games and competitions such as the Stein-Hold and Cornhole. Saturday (only), two beers from each brewery will be available. Brewing companies include Natchez Brewing Company, Slowboat Brewing Company, Tin Roof Brewing Company, and Covington Brewhouse. More information about this year’s Great Mississippi River Balloon Race is available on the event’s Facebook page, “Great Mississippi River Balloon Race.” Tickets are on sale now online at, or you can purchase them at The Historic Natchez Foundation. edm Great Mississippi River Ballon Race October 20th-22nd

eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 77

Food Festivals & Events October 6-7

Columbus - Roast N Boast BBQ Festival & Competition

The Roast N Boast BBQ Festival and BBQ Competition is a non-profit event benefiting children with cancer. Over $13,000 in prizes are awarded in several categories. Sample and vote for World Class BBQ at the people’s choice tent, enjoy live bands Friday night, food vendors, golf tournament, and auction. Visit or call 662-549-5054 for more information.

October 7

Madison - Day in the Country

October 7-8

Collins - Mississippi Peanut Festival Mitchell Farms hosts the annual Mississippi Peanut Festival on their farm in Collins. The festival will include arts & crafts exhibitors, antiques, unique children’s clothes, jewelry, yard art, and lots of food. The peanut festival kicks off the farm’s pumpkin patch fun fall festivities. Call 601-606-0762 for details of scheduled events or visit www.

October 13

Tupelo - 18th Annual Chili Fest The Downtown Tupelo Main Street Association (DTMSA) will host the 18th annual Chili Fest on Friday, October 13th. The one-day festival will consist of lunch and dinner, music, and a chili cook-off. Contact DTMSA at 662-841-6598 or go to www. for event details.

October 13-14

Cleveland - Octoberfest Day in the Country is a community festival held on the grounds of Chapel of the Cross each first Saturday in October. It draws more than 10,000 visitors annually with families enjoying food, music, artisans, crafts, tours of the Chapel, Barbecue Cook-Off, the famous 63-Egg Cake, and children’s games and rides. This year’s Day in the Country will be held on October 7th. For more information, visit or call 601-856-2593.


This year marks the 35th Octoberfest held in downtown Cleveland. This MBN sanctioned barbecue competition also includes two days of live music, over 100 arts and craft vendors, Southern cuisine, children’s area, and much more. For more information, call 662.843.2712, or visit www.

October 19-21

Greenville Delta Hot Tamale Festival The Delta Hot Tamale Festival is celebrating its fourth year with more events, more music, and more of those famous Delta Hot Tamales! The Delta Hot Tamale is perhaps the biggest culinary contribution to come from this area. Visitors from around the world will gather with local residents in Greenville to enjoy this delicious food. This three-day celebration includes everything from the Frank Carlton Hot Tamale Cooking Contest, the crowning of Miss Hot Tamale, a hot tamale Eating Contest, book signings by a number of well-known writers, a celebrity chefs’ Hot Tamale Cook-off, hot tamale storytelling, a parade, arts and crafts, food symposium, three stages featuring a variety of home-grown Delta musicians, and plenty of hot tamales to whet your appetite. Bring your lawn chairs and the entire family to Stein Mart Square in Downtown Greenville for a one-of-a-kind experience. For more information visit

October 20-21

Hattiesburg Downtown BBQ Showdown

The 5th Annual Downtown BBQ Showdown will be held on Friday and Saturday, October 20th & 21st at Walthall Park in Hattiesburg. The event is sanctioned by the Kansas City BBQ Society (KCBS) and draws BBQ Teams from all over the Southeast to participate. This year, the event will benefit the

Field House for the Homeless in Hattiesburg. As part of the 250KCBS Meals Mission, Field House for the Homeless will be provided with Boston butts prepared by participating teams. Get a taste of delicious BBQ along with a kids zone and live music. For more information, visit www.bbqshowdown. or call 601-270-5424.

November 2

Taste of Tupelo This business expo features over 100 businesses providing demonstrations, complimentary samples, and information. In addition to local restaurants, caterers, and bakeries, the Taste of Tupelo will feature exhibitors from various industries including healthcare, banking, manufacturing, retail, educational institutions, and more! This event is presented by the Community Development Foundation along with Barnes Crossing Auto Group and is open to adults ages 21 & over.

November 4-11

Vardaman Sweet Potato Festival

Vardaman is known for its production of sweet potatoes. The city celebrates this nutritious and delicious vegetable with its annual Sweet Potato Festival. Held in downtown November 4th-11th, this festival features arts/crafts, 5K run/walk, antique tractor judging, sweet potato tasting booth, sweet potato pie eating contest, barbecued chicken dinner, sweet potato queen/ king contest, sweet potato recipe contest, and more. For more information, call 662-682-7559 or visit www.

To have your food festival or culinary event included in future issues, please contact us at All submissions are subject to editor’s approval. eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 79

Recipe Index

Advertisers Index

Baked Ricotta, 51 Cajeta - Goat Milk Caramel Sauce, 47 Chargrilled Oysters, 24 Chicken Broth, 23 Comeback Sauce, 23 Delta Gumbo, 23 Extremely Flaky Sour Cream Crust, 13 Gingerbread Steamer, 54 Italian Wedding Soup, 18 Leslie’s Salad with Hot and Spice Bloody Mary Mix Vinaigrette, 17 Maple Steamer, 54 Moscow Mule, 29 Old Biloxi French Gumbo, 19 Pasta Jambalaya, 53 Pumpkin Rice Stuffed Turkey Tenderloin, 38 Pumpkin Roll, 8 Pumpkin Spice Chai Tea Latte, 41 Pumpkin Spice Cheesecake, 41 Tortellini & Pancetta Potpie, 13 Vanilla Steamer, 54

Bin 612, 25 Etta B Pottery, 6 Mangia Bene, 9 McEwen’s, 25 Mississippi Food Network, 11 Mistletoe Marketplace, 83 Peter Anderson Festival, 6 Sanderson Farms, Back Cover Sombra, 4 The Kitchen Table, 4 Thurman’s Landscaping, 81 Visit Hattiesburg, 3 Visit Jackson, 2 Visit Ridgeland, 9

STORE INFORMATION from pages 14-15

Crate & Barrel 800.967.6696 Dillard’s Mississippi locations - Biloxi, Hattiesburg, Meridian, Ridgeland, Southaven, Vicksburg 800.345.5273 MYdrap 855.359.7555 Pier 1 Imports Mississippi locations - Flowood, Gulfport, Hattiesburg, Ridgeland, Southaven, Tupelo 800.245.4595

Follow us on Instagram to see some of the tasty, local bites we’ve discovered! 80 • OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2017

The Mississippi Gift Company 300 Howard St. Greenwood, MS 38930 800.467.7763 Turkey on the Table Available at shops in Biloxi, Brookhaven, Columbia, Gulfport, Hattiesburg, Laurel, Madison, Meridian, New Albany, Ridgeland, Seminary, Senatobia, Southaven, Starkville, Tupelo, and Winona. Visit website for exact locations.

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August/September 2017

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Download the free Eat Drink Mississippi app to purchase and view in app.

Mississippi Seafood Trail | Berry Picking | The Great Ruleville Roast


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Crunchy Grilled Snapper Burritos

+ Forklift + Downtown Grille + 303 Jefferson + 1884 Cafe + Sully’s

Classic Southern Tomato Pie Quickie Pie

eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 1

Getting a taste of Mississippi has never been easier! Landscaping • Irrigation Waterfalls • Lighting Outdoor Kitchens & Patios Iron & Brick Work

Thurman’s Landscaping

Hattiesburg, Miss.

601.270.8512 eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 81

Till We Eat Again


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.


Marriage Is About Compromise, Even When It Comes to Food



love to listen to food. Food podcasts, that is. One of my long-time favorites is The Sporkful, hosted by Dan Pashman. His tag line of late is, “We obsess about food, to learn more about people.” And he does just that. Recently he ran a series called, “Your Mom’s Food,” which explored the ways people from vastly different cultures adapted (or didn’t) to the foodways those cultures brought to the relationship. One interviewee grew up with an Australian-Irish father and an Afro-Cuban mother - a classic clash of potatoes vs. rice. Another episode focused on kids adopted from overseas, discussing how their families introduced home-culture foods to help keep them connected. What got my attention, however, were the stories about couples. One marriage, for example, consisted of a Indian vegan and a Midwestern omnivore. Another pair were both Jewish, but one was raised in a kosher household and the other - well, he likes bacon. A lot. Not only did these couples have to figure out how to adapt to each other, they also had to decide how to raise their kids at the table. The challenges of these cross-cultural marriages really hit home - my home. When I met my wife, we were both in North Carolina, which, despite the first word in its name, is still very much a Southern state. I was from Mississippi and she was from Florida. Everything was lining up Southern. At least that’s what I thought. Then the first revelation came. Because traditional American dating practices generally involve dinner or lunch, she had to let me know she was a vegan. Here I was, trying to immerse myself in all the pulled pork barbecue variations that the Carolinas provided, and she wouldn’t even eat a pie crust with lard in it. She eventually repented of that, but from the get-go we had cross-cultural barriers to overcome. It wasn’t until later in the relationship that I discovered the coordinates of her true homeland. I was born in Texas, raised and educated in Mississippi. She was actually from New York - and upstate, at that. Her folks moved to Florida when she was about eight years old, but they were (and are) still very much New Yorkers. They never went back (which I am ever grateful for - how else would I have met their daughter?!) But still...they may have been in the South, but they were certainly not of it. This mingling of cultures didn’t present many challenges at first, aside from the vegan-carnivore issue. (See the June/July 2015 issue for that story.) But as the wedding plans were taking shape, we began to realize the full extent of the adaptations our future together would require. Since the rehearsal dinner is traditionally the domain of the groom’s family, I announced that the menu would be centered around fried catfish and barbecue. She thought I was joking. I certainly was not. It seems that her people looked at this as a more formal occasion. It took a consultation with our caterer to convince her that barbecue could be dressed up with traditional but “elevated” sides, and everything would be alright. So we imported the barbecue from Little Dooey in Starkville, and the wedding party (from all over the North-South-Mississippi-New York-Florida spectrum) loved it so much we ran out of pork. The catfish was scrapped, sadly, but compromise is a part of marriage, after all. The reception was the next challenge. I was raised in a setting where most wedding receptions were held in the fellowship hall of the same church where the ceremony took place. And the menu was set: pimento cheese sandwiches with the crusts cut off, butter-mints, mixed nuts, wedding cake, and punch that was required by church doctrine to contain lime sherbet and ginger ale. The caterer? The Wedding Reception committee of that same church, or some variation of such. That wasn’t going to fly in our case. Thankfully, we settled for better food in an off-site location. Another compromise, another win for cross-cultural marriages everywhere. In our twenty plus years of marital bliss we have, for the most part, learned to like each other’s food. I eat the corned beef hash with gusto, she goes with me to the barbecue joints - just not every day. We’re still working on the catfish. edm

eat. drink. MISSISSIPPI • 83

Thanksgiving means family. And for our family, that means lots of fresh, never frozen, Sanderson Farms chicken. Because there’s nothing like the taste of healthy, natural chicken raised right here in the USA. Happy Thanksgiving from Sanderson Farms.


Profile for Eat Drink Mississippi

October November 2017  

Our October/November 2017 issue features Chef Leslie Roark Scott of Ubons BBQ in Yazoo, Glo light-up drink cubes, seasonal pumpkin recipes,...

October November 2017  

Our October/November 2017 issue features Chef Leslie Roark Scott of Ubons BBQ in Yazoo, Glo light-up drink cubes, seasonal pumpkin recipes,...