Memorial Day is synonymous with BBQ’s and cookouts, but unfortunately, this City Girl does not own a grill. Nonetheless, I did make my own All American meal using some of my favorite recipes which consisted of fried chicken, Southern Living macaroni and cheese recipe, Piero’s Italian Cuisine creamed corn recipe and a pear-grape-pecan-blue cheese salad. The salad was inspired by Daniel’s Restaurant in Apex, North Carolina.
Two great tips for frying chicken that I read in the Art of Simple Food by Alice Waters are 1) soak the chicken in buttermilk for 20 minutes and 2) use a cast iron skillet for crispier chicken. The verdict was…oh this is oh-so-good, I will not only have seconds, but thirds and I will forgo the dessert tonight. I actually ended up soaking the chicken in buttermilk for an hour. I agree that the cast iron skillet did yield a very crispy chicken, but noticed the color of the skin was a little darker for my taste. I might lower the temperature to medium heat vs. medium high heat next time. Regardless, I got several kudos from my dinner guests.
The mac & cheese as well as the creamed corn were comfort food at its best. I was lucky enough to have picked up a special edition of Southern Living years ago that has one of my favorite go to mac & cheese recipes. I can only make this a couple times a year because it is so indulgent and simply dangerous.
On my last trip to Las Vegas, I dined at Piero’s Italian Cuisine, which is off the strip. What a true gem! I will be sharing my Las Vegas foodie adventures soon, but one of my great take away’s was a note card with their creamed corn recipe. This is definitely making an appearance again at my future dinners.
The salad was a meal on its own. I made it again the next day, but served it as a main course. The blue cheese and pecans provided that meaty, savory flavor while the fruit provided a light sweetness that did not over power the salad. I could have added chicken as an option, but I think the salad is the star.
Let me what’s your favorite All American meal. I would love to hear what’s on your menu for this Memorial Day.