Saturday, March 26, 2011

Southern Style

Because I feel the need to give things themes, my birthday was a "Dirty South" themed event.  I ushered in the big 3-0 with biscuits & jam, pickles, black-eyed peas and greens, sweet tea, gangsta rap and red velvet cake.  We planned on playing dominoes, but there was too much food on the table.

This is how it's done, people.  

My BFF Sarah made red velvet cake and even boiled down beets to make a natural red food coloring because she knows I won't touch the artificial stuff.  Just look at all that cream cheese frosting! (And, yes, I know I look like I'm about to gleefully slaughter the cake with that knife).

My other BFF Brandon drove in from Madison and whipped up the black eyed peas and greens from Appetite for Reduction.  We cashed out the bottle of liquid smoke on this one. 

My birthday was basically an excuse to eat biscuits all day.  I made a double batch and used a little cookie cutter to make them much smaller than usual.  Here they are with my favorite jams from this year: Raspberry Chipotle, Cranberry Ginger and Apricot Vanila.

If I was in the South still, these would have been picked from my own pecan tree, but the bulk bins at the co-op made do.  I coated these in a mixture of melted Earth Balance and maple syrup and tossed them with chile powder, cayenne and cinnamon before roasting them.  Positively addictive.

Does anyone else's family do this?  We always had crackers with cream cheese and jalapeno jam when I was growing up, but most of my friends were baffled by this (they ate it anyways).  These are Back to Nature brand "Ritz" style crackers with Tofutti cream cheese and my own jalapeno jam from way back in '08.  

Not pictured: Pickled okra, sweet tea, gin 'n juice and a fantastic Trinidadian habanero-pineapple dish.  I'll be making that soon and telling you all about it.  


foodfeud said...

Great theme! Gangsta rap takes its place among the red velvet cake - I love it.

A-K said...

That sounds like an awesome theme...especially given our current weather situation! Nothing like spicy and comforting to warm you up on a chilly Minnesota day. Happy birthday!

Anonymous said...

What a fantastic birthday spread. You've inspired me to stop being afraid of my pressure canner and get to it!

Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday!


Vegyogini said...

Happy birthday, Liz! I've always wanted to try jalapeno jam, but it's not easy to come by in L.A. It looks like you had a fantastic celebration!

Brandon said...

I want to eat this all over again!

Anonymous said...

my family did the cream cheese jalapeno jelly thing! tasty times.