Anyway, a few days ago I saw this medical article making the rounds on my news-sharing site (cough Twitter cough) about how the "Southern Diet [is] Linked to Heart Disease". OH YOU DON'T SAY? Well by golly giggly I am just shocked. SHOCKED I SAY.
And I meant a feast. Husband had recently shown interest in maple bourbon sweet potatoes and bacon cornbread, so I decided to make those two sides plus Brussels sprouts to go alongside a sausage and okra gumbo. I'm pretty much a southern belle now. I'm going to share all four recipes today because southern hospitality y'all. They are posted in order of appearance/what to make first, so you can follow along and know how to get through everything in just one dinnertimemakingsession.
- 2 cups coconut flakes BIG AS YOU GOT BIG AS YOU GOT
- 1.5 tablespoons soy sauce
- <1 tablespoon liquid smoke
- 3 teaspoons maple syrup (omg guys, I actually bought real maple syrup for this biz. IN LONDON! First time. I know. It's just so expensiveeee.)
- Preheat oven to 350F.
- Mix it all together in a big bowl and let it soak for like 5 minutes.
- Bake on a parchment lined baking sheet for about 12-15 minutes but keep an eye on it. You want them to brown but not burn.
Enjoy! You only need about half for the cornbread but you'll want to snack on these, or put them in sandwiches? People say they put them in sandwiches but I don't see how they stay. Anyway.
If you are only making this dish, or have too much time/oven space on your hands, you should roast the potatoes instead. The flavor will be deeper, which is a foodie way of saying better. But it takes like 2 hours for them to get soft in the oven and it is hot without a/c here. Maybe in winter I'll put up with roasting and not cheating in the microwave or boiling. No I will never put up with that shit.
- 3 pounds sweet potatoes (I used two gigantic ones)
- 3 tablespoons maple syrup (maybe I bought it for this?)
- 5 tablespoons vegan margarine
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 3 tablespoons bourbon
- First, chop up and boil the sweet potatoes until soft, like 15 minutes. Do this while the coconut bacon is in the oven! Heyyyy!
- Drain and then return to the same big pot.
- Mash them with a masher (I have this now!) and add the other ingredients except the bourbon.
- Take a tiny saucepan and cook the bourbon over high heat, bringing it just to a boil. Then tilt the pan so all the liquid pools together and cook for just a minute. It will reduce. People say that when you tilt the pan, the bourbon will be set aflame, but that really didn't happen, and I don't see how it could, but just be warned that maybe it will happen to you.
- Add the reduced bourbon to the potatoes and mix everything vigorously with a fork to kind of do a lazy person's whipping.
- The oven is still on right? Remove the bacon if you are timing everything perfectly, which is super easy to do, and put in the potatoes which you have now spread in a small baking dish, like 8x6 or whatever you want really.
- Bake for like 15-20 minutes. You could add a sugary pecan topping, that would be pretty authentic, but I don't like that when it's not dessert time.
I went to Whole Foods this week for the first time in no joke maybe 8 months, and not only did I see a friend from high school (how fun is THAT) but I bought Tofurky sausages. Excuse me, Tofurky "Artisan" sausages, in the chicken and apple flavor. I'm not the biggest fan of sausages but these were pretty good and seemed perfect for a gumbo, especially mixed with okra, bell peppers, and kale. And beans. Have to have beans at every meal.
This comes together pretty easily,
and while it simmers you can make the Brussels.
- 2 pounds Brussels sprouts (you will love them!)
- 1/4?? olive oil (just pour)
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- Mix it all in the bowl. Mix it in a mixer and pretend it's beef! No.
- Really massage the oil into the sprouts. Get in there.
- Put these on a parchment lined baking sheet (like the one you used for the coconut bacon!)
- Oven should still be hot or even occupied! Bake these at 350F for 15 minutes.