Name Your Favorite “Old-Time” aka traditional Meal

herbantherapy
herbantherapy Posts: 453 ✭✭✭✭

My family is Irish decent and most of our family dinners revolve around a meat and potato meal. You know; pot roast, stew, Shepard’s pie. Though certainly watered down and Americanized. My mom married into an Italian family and I was introduced to standard Italian meals. I love ALL the different culture meals. Currently my favorite (outside of Grandma’s recipes) are Thai and Northern Mexico flavors.

I would love to add some new traditional meals into the mix. Tell me your favorite traditional meal! If your Grandma made it or Her Grandmother made it then I WANT TO KNOW ABOUT IT!!!

* don’t worry about repeating or feeling like it’s not unique, I’m genuinely curious about what others think are a traditional meal.

Comments

  • Tave
    Tave Posts: 952 ✭✭✭✭✭

    My family is of German/English descent, and homemade bread was never missing from the table. One of my favorite meals was scalloped potatoes. My grandfather made the best sausage.

  • judsoncarroll4
    judsoncarroll4 Posts: 5,463 admin

    My family settled in the area of the southeastern US around 400 years ago, where rice was first grown commercially in America. So, we have a strong rice culture influence in our foods. Country style steak, for instance was always made with brown gravy to be served over buttered rice. Okra and tomato or tomato and peppers was served over buttered rice. Stewed chicken with rice. Salmon or other canned fish with rice. Pork chops with rice. Etc, etc. We had several low country variations on what is known as jambalaya in Louisiana, such as the "chicken bog" which was usually served at political gatherings. It was also major pork country, so most anything else revolved around barbecue, REAL barbecue... whole hogs cooked 20 hours over hickory and oak coals. We ate lots of collard, turnip and mustard greens, fresh, frozen or home canned corn, plenty of grits, succotash, mainly butterbeans and field peas, lots of potatoes and sweet potatoes, tons of okra, biscuits and several regional sausages that aren't available commercially, shad roe, lots of fish, game and seafood, fried chicken, chicken and pastry, cornbread, dressing, lots of peppers, onion in most everything, soup and salad daily. Desserts were usually banana pudding, sweet potato pudding or tea cakes.

  • herbantherapy
    herbantherapy Posts: 453 ✭✭✭✭

    @judsoncarroll4 my mouth is watering! REAL BBQ is SO good. The chicken bog sounds interesting, would you mind expanding on this? What was in it, how did it differ from jambalaya?

    Is the chicken and pastry like a pot pie?

    I have not heard of sweet potato pudding, that sounds good!

  • judsoncarroll4
    judsoncarroll4 Posts: 5,463 admin

    The main difference between Carolina low country cooking and Louisiana Cajun and Creole cooking is the spice. Basically, the same folks migrated to both, but the Carolinas had much less Spanish influence and more English and Scots-Irish. Both had plenty of French and African. Louisiana had more Creole influence though, so more hot peppers. We had just a little, regionally. But, my family is part Creole, so we ALWAYS had hot peppers! However, garlic wasn't used anywhere near as much. Whereas Jambalaya would be pork (or sausage), chicken and/or shrimp, cooked with rice, onions, celery, peppers, garlic and tomato, a Chicken Bog would be a huge rice stew of chicken, sausage, onions and celery predominately. Different folks added different things, but it was a less dry dish more hearty/savory than spicy. We also had Low Country Boils/Frogmore Stew and, REAL Brunswick Stew - 3 meats, almost always including game, with tomato, onion, corn and beans - the Brunswick settlement in NC predated both those in GA and VA by a century or so.

    Chicken and pastry is similar to chicken and dumplings, but the dumplings are rolled flat, more like pasta.

    Sweet potato pudding is a true family heirloom recipe from the Huguenot French. Each family makes it differently, but it is basically a sweet potato soufflé, spiced with vanilla, nutmeg, cinnamon, allspice and cloves. It does not rise much, but has a dense, rich texture and dark color from molasses or brown sugar.

    I think I can find an old documentary or two on a couple of these dishes.

  • herbantherapy
    herbantherapy Posts: 453 ✭✭✭✭

    @judsoncarroll4 you are AWESOME! These are great resources. I’m about to dive in! Thank you, Thank you!

  • judsoncarroll4
    judsoncarroll4 Posts: 5,463 admin