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southern comfort: beach-style

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I love remembering the foods my mom used to make when I was growing up:  pot roast with carrots and potatoes, biscuits and gravy, chicken and dumplings….mmm.  My dad is a real meat-and-potatoes sort of guy, and my mom knew just how to fix what he liked.  Several months ago, my dad had to stay with me in Birmingham, and I wanted to make something I he’d enjoy (he’s a little…picky).  I asked my mom about some of his favorite things, and she gave me one of his top choices:  hamburger steak.  It was a success smothered in gravy.

Ever since I knew we were going to be at the beach for a whole week, I’ve been thinking about cooking dinner a few times during our stay.  I was sure that I wanted to re-create my hamburger steak for my parents and Jonathan.  Our hotel is a sort of extended-stay type room, with an oven, stovetop, microwave, etc.  After J and I gathered the necessary supplies, we headed “home” to create a comforting meal to be shared by all.

First, we diced up the onions (on a paper plate) and sliced the mushrooms (using a serrated pocket knife…that’s not really used as a pocket knife).  I sautéed them in a little Best Life buttery spread while Jonathan pattied out the meat, which we mixed with some onions, garlic powder and Dale’s.

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Another thing my dad requested was white beans, so I picked up a can at Publix.  One thing I’d not counted out:  There was no can opener in our room.  So…I made do.

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I had to be careful not to cut myself along the rough edges.

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But I made it happen!  No invention of man can keep me from my beans.

While we waited on the meat to broil, I steamed a bag of mixed veggies in the mic, heated up the beans and some Uncle Ben’s Ready Rice.  We also had some mushroom gravy on the back burner (literally).  Before we knew it, it was time to eat!

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It was quite the spread, complete with plastic utensils and paper plates.  (And eating rice out of the microwavable bags.)

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I had a little bit of everything:DSC05533 It’s been such a treat to take a fun trip with my family and share time with them that I don’t really get now that I live over an hour away.  Are there certain meals that just remind you of your family?  Sometimes I’ll make my mom’s recipes, and with one bite I’m sitting right there at the table with her.

As for the rest of my trip…I keep forgetting what day it is!  I love my job, but it’s so nice to have a full week away.  Today we did some shopping and just kinda came and went as we so pleased.  Do you just take days off from work just for you?  What’s your favorite way to relax?


4 responses »

  1. I do the same thing! Every time I make one of my mom’s recipes, I feel like she’s there with me. Which is nice, since she lives in Jersey and I’m in Alabama! Just seeing this post makes me want to make Chicken and Rice, or Chicken and Trees, or Dome Spaghetti. Yum! Love a home-cooked meal.

    Glad y’all are having fun at the beach!

  2. I love how Southern-style your food memories are.


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