Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Mary Ann Taylor: Rocket City Redneck Hush Puppies

Regular readers of this blog know that my blog writing has been sidetracked by a new venture-- writing for Zester Daily, a great online food magazine.  As a result, I've fallen behind on many things, including trying new recipes to publish here on ESD.  But I couldn't resist sharing Mary Ann Taylor's recipe for Hush Puppies in honor of the Rocket City Rednecks' appearance on The Jay Leno Show this evening (Wednesday, Feb. 22.)

National Geographic's Rocket City Rednecks are friends of this blog and the matriarch of the family, Mary Ann Taylor, has contributed several fantastic recipes and a Sunday Dinner Questionnaire.  When I saw Mary Ann's son Travis Taylor just before the holidays, he said, "Now that you've made my mom's bitterballen, you've GOT to try her hush puppies.  They're amazing!"  He was certainly right about the bitterballen, and I made them without even knowing what bitterballen were.  It seems to me that bitterballen and hush puppies aren't too far apart.  They're both savory and deep-fried.  I can't wait to try them, especially since Mary Ann's Bitterballen were such a huge hit at my house.
My version of Mary Ann Taylor's Bitterballen recipe, 2011.

So if you're having a leisurely evening at home tonight, check out the Leno Show to see The Rocket City Rednecks.  (I have an insider's report that it's worth tuning in or at least setting the DVR.)  And if you try this recipe, be sure to send me a report.  I'll share my own experience making them as soon as I get back into the kitchen.  Thanks, Mary Ann!

Hush Puppies
by Mary Ann Taylor

  • ¾ cup corn meal [I sometimes use a cornmeal buttermilk mix]
  • ¾ cup self-rising flour
  • 1 – 14oz can cream corn [start with 2/3 can and add to desired thickness]
  • 3 jalapeños, seeds removed and chopped [may use bell peppers instead]
  • 1 onion, chopped 
  • 1 egg
  • Mix all ingredients together and set aside to rise
  • Bring olive or canola oil to about 350 degrees
  • Dip teaspoon into hot oil; dip up a spoonful of batter  with hot spoon, using a second spoon push batter off spoon into hot oil; roll hush puppy to brown on all sides
  • Drain on paper towels and serve hot

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

My Newest Enterprise: Zester Daily Reporter

Giant marmalade jar at E. Waldo Ward Ranch, 2012.
Regular readers of this blog may have wondered about my lack of recent posts.  I am pleased to announce that there's a good reason for this.

I've embarked on an exciting new project writing for Zester Daily, and online food magazine dedicated to writing and reporting about food in a smart and engaging way.  I'm honored to have my writing seen alongside the work of so many incredible food writers.

My first article for Zester Daily went online a few days ago-- it's a report about my visit to the E. Waldo Ward Ranch.  I've been there several times now and each visit is a treat.  I always come home with edible treats as well.

This morning my family ate croissants with cherry preserves from the Ward Ranch and I can't imagine a more fitting way to celebrate Valentine's Day.  I had planned to take a photograph of our breakfast this morning, but it was so delicious that we gobbled it up before I remembered to get out the camera.

Instead I thought I'd share a photograph of a giant vintage jam jar recently painted for the Ward family to resemble the logo of their first product-- Sweet Orange Marmalade-- created by E. Waldo Ward himself one hundred years ago.