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The Story of Biscuits in My Family

Southerners love biscuits.

I love biscuits.

Biscuits are something to which we can always look forward. I’m sure everyone can hear my inner carboholic celebrating.

When I was a kid, Poppy made biscuits every Sunday. Except his biscuits were actually from a can, but he made practically everything else from scratch, so that was totally okay. I learned around the Lazy Susan Table to enjoy gravy on my biscuits.

This eventually led to my Gigi taking us by a local gas station to get biscuits in the morning before school and sometimes even before we went somewhere in the mornings during the summer. I always wanted a gravy biscuit, and my brother always wanted a jelly biscuit. I think I did flip-flop between gravy biscuits and bacon, egg, and cheese biscuits, which is what Gigi usually ate, and if I felt really froggy, I would even go for a sausage biscuit.

But the gravy biscuits remained my favorite.

One time, my mom asked for an egg biscuit and a jelly biscuit, and apparently, someone misunderstood and gave her an egg and jelly biscuit- something we didn’t discover until it was too late to return to the gas station. Or maybe it was a bacon jelly biscuit, I’m not sure. The point is, it was one of those situations where someone did something that made absolutely no sense.

Contrary to popular belief and what my friend’s mom once told me in high school, gravy, and I mean good gravy, can be made without meat. All it takes is butter, flour, and milk- the concoction is properly called a roux, I think. Salt and pepper are almost absolutely necessary at this point to give it that authentic gravy flavor.

In more recent years, Gigi started making her own biscuits, and then I took her recipe and started making a variation of them that turned into a mimic of the Red Lobster Cheddar Bay biscuits, though they aren’t nearly as fluffy and good as the Cheddar Bay biscuits.

Cheddar Bay biscuits are delicious, and the first time I ever had them at Red Lobster, they were so spicy I almost couldn’t eat them. I had never eaten that amount of garlic in my life, so it was overpowering to say the least, but I loved them. Also, I happened to be coming down the chicken pox at this time unbeknownst to any of us, so that might have played into the matter. This was on a Saturday, and the next day at Poppy’s house, I noticed some spots on my stomach, which Poppy said were the first signs of chicken pox.

Tomato gravy is also one of my favorite foods that goes with biscuits. You haven’t truly lived or eaten Southern food until you’ve had tomato gravy.

Biscuits are seriously a perfect food. I’m pretty sure Ms. Alice used to cut open biscuits and put butter in them. Biscuits are great for filling- and you can use meat, cheese, vegetables, and even sweet stuff. Biscuits are great for topping- gravy and even other kinds of sauces can go on top of them. Biscuits are great by themselves or as a side dish!

We love biscuits!

Gigi and Mimi’s mother, my maternal grandmother, used to make a chocolate sauce with biscuits. I always heard about this and thought it was incredibly strange. Apparently my maternal grandmother also made caramel cakes, and Mimi said she pronounced it as “CAR-uh-mel,” not “CARE-a-mel,” and my cousin Susanne and I both liked the first pronunciation better. I wonder if we can dig up the recipe for a caramel cake and make it.

That being said, the recipes are coming soon.

Beaux


 
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Posted by on May 19, 2011 in food, postaday, postaday2011

 

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Big Coffee

So the Onyx Plate posted an interesting article on Facebook earlier about coffee and its health benefits, especially for men. I had previously heard that coffee is good for the liver but had not heard that it also makes for a healthy prostate gland.

The article also mentioned, as we later discovered, something about coffee helping to reduce certain kinds of breast tumors.

Anyway, I drink a lot of coffee. My family drinks a lot of coffee. This is no accident and goes back through the generations. If I can blame anyone for my current addiction to caffeine, I would point to my grandparents on both sides of the family and then my own parents. Carboholism may be genetic, but coffee addiction is both genetic and conditioned. My great-grandparents may have drunk coffee often, too, I’m not sure.

My paternal grandmother always had coffee brewing in her house, 24/7, as I understand it, and I mentioned this before, as did some of my commenters, when I wrote about the Lazy Susan Table and its legacy in my family. My maternal grandmother always drank coffee in the morning and enjoyed having cake with it. Elsewhere, I’ve mentioned this, too- but it’s good to have a reminder, don’t you agree?

So the whole process of turning me into a coffee addict began with my being scared as a child. I was frightened often as a child and honestly still am by some of the oddest things that I won’t detail right now, so I would end up getting up and going to the den to sit with my father while he watched a local morning show that Red Holland, a local fishing celebrity, hosted. I would sit in Bapaw’s lap and drink his coffee, which featured milk and sugar in it.

This is where a huge contradiction occurs. Bapaw loves his coffee with cream and sugar. These days, to be healthier, he puts honey in it, but honey doesn’t really work for me. Gigi refuses to drink anything but a straight-up dark brew. No sweet coffee for her.

Personally, I like my coffee both ways, depending on my mood. Most often I seem to take coffee with cream but no sugar, and I especially prefer it black when I’m eating something sweet.

Anyway, the addiction to coffee never ceased in my childhood nor since, and now that I’m in my early late twenties, apparently the addiction is still blazing bright.

Coffee is also supposed to be beneficial to the liver. This makes sense- coffee has a sobering effect, making one more alert, more awake, and more efficient. Alcohol has the opposite effect, slowing one down and impairing various mental functions- and it can be damaging to the liver. Interesting how the opposite effects both correlate to either benefitting or afflicting the liver.

So, the point of this blog: Gigi bought me an enormous coffee cup two years ago for my birthday, the same time I got my fantastic MacBook that I still adore to this day. The coffee cup holds not one, not two, but three cups worth and has a fantastic artistic design on it that’s faded over the years. I still use this coffee cup to this day and absolutely love it; on the inside rim, it says, “Javalicious.”

True, true.

Also, coffee has other effects- it can help a mild headache, serve as a mild laxative, and be a mood booster.

Coffee’s definitely a mood booster for me. Not having coffee renders the lives of those around me in to great peril, and small woodland creatures as a whole may find themselves suddenly extinct if they come to close.

How do you like your coffee? Dark or sweet? And how much do you drink?

Beaux


 
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Posted by on May 18, 2011 in food, postaday, postaday2011

 

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Penne and Seven Cheese Sauce with Lobster: Beaux’s Spur-of-the-Moment Mealtime

Earle and I made our traditional trip to Publix on Friday night after taking a hiatus for some two weeks or so. The last dinner I made from Publix turned out to be delicious, and the one before that was slightly disastrous.

Last night, I did the absolute best I’ve ever done at Publix! Here’s what I bought:

  • 1 large organic sweet onion- $1.11
  • 1 container of Blue Cheese crumbles – $2.50
  • 1 bag of shredded Italian 6 cheese mix- $2.99
  • 1 pack of imitation Lobster meat- $2.99
  • 2 boxes of Penne (on sale!)- $1.39
  • Total: $11.97 (including tax)

We also bought a pint of milk, the exact amount needed to make the cheese sauce.

So, here’s what I did:

  1. I boiled 1 box of penne and added another 1/4 box to it. Unfortunately, I spilled that 1/4 of the box into the sink when draining it.
  2. I chopped the onion and sauteed it in butter until it began to caramelize, at which time I added the lobster meat. You can also use crab meat, and no matter what you use, I recommend using two packs instead of one.
  3. I removed the onion and lobster mix from the wok and then added 3 Tablespoons of butter and the pint of milk, heating it just below boiling, and then adding the blue cheese and the pack of Italian six cheese.
  4. After the sauce warmed and thickened with the melting cheese, I added the lobster and onions back to the mix, followed by the penne.
  5. The meal turned out to be pretty good after all was said and done, though it needed salt and pepper (but what doesn’t?)
  6. Also, I sprinkled bacon bits (the soy kind) on top of the mixture, too.

My apologies for the lack of pictures; for whatever reason, I just never got around to taking a picture of the food.

If you eat meat, this dish would be great with bacon in it; the bacon bits added a good flavor to it and tend to go with seafood.

Carpe Diem!

Beaux

 
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Posted by on April 24, 2011 in dinner, food, postaday, postaday2011, recipes, seafood

 

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Photos from Wired

This blog really only shows some photos from Wired. They’re all taken from the original MySpace webpage.

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Beaux

 

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Memoirs of a Coffee House 11: The Phenomenon of Wired and My Life

Let’s back up the story just a bit. I forgot to mention something important, and now things have been clarified in my mind.

The Autumn of 2004 brought with it also Patsy Random and the Random family. She had the look of a rocker chick extraordinaire: tattoos and necklaces with wild, flowing locks of hair. My friend Haley had met Patsy and introduced her to the coffee house. Patsy was an excellent singer and songwriter; she walked around with a guitar slung over her shoulder. She sang with a powerful voice and some killer tunes, songs that had lyrics we all related to, that were heartfelt. People sang along frequently at her concerts. Patsy would later become key to one of the biggest phenomenon that ever hit the area.

Halloween of that year featured a costume contest and Patsy Random playing. Lily even rented another venue for her other bands and took refreshments there so that the rest of us could stay for Patsy’s concert!

I don’t remember being dressed up. In fact, I’m pretty sure I wasn’t dressed up at the coffee house, and then when Halloween itself actually rolled around, we threw a party at my apartment, where I just wore generic gothic make-up and black clothing. Nothing special, just spooky and festive for Halloween.

Also, there was incident of losing the TV remote on Halloween when two girls who were dressed up at Mario and Luigi respectively carried it out with their cooler. This caused a number of problems for us at the apartment, mainly being unable to change certain stations on the TV or start the DVD player.

Another musical phenomenon at the time was Claire Dracos. Claire had worked at the coffee house since the original days of Wired. She had an artistic French look to her with short hair, flowing clothing, and large, doe eyes. Her beauty was one of innocence and purity. I remarked once that Claire reminded me of Rosalyn, a local massage therapist whose shop was only a short walk from the coffee house. The difference, said Lily, was that Claire had an innocent beauty and Rosalyn has a “knowing” beauty. This made sense, as Ros was in her 40s and Claire, only 18.

Claire played the guitar, and would sit, singing her sweet notes. We all adored her. The major song we all praised her for was her cover of Iron and Wine’s “Such Great Heights,” which was itself a cover of the Postal Service’s song, “Such Great Heights.” She truly sounded like an angel singing. I would enthusiastically say, “Claire’s going places!”

I bought a copy of Patsy Random’s album. Or it was given to me. I don’t remember. The point is, I had the album, and it made me happy, and I played it over and over. I’m not sure if I still have the album or not, but Lily and I agreed that the recording didn’t do Patsy justice. Another artist whose recording didn’t capture her true talent.

That’s all for this entry. Stay tuned- there’s more to come!

Beaux

 

 

 

 

 


 
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Posted by on April 11, 2011 in food, postaday, postaday2011, wired

 

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