July 2, 2009

The Secret Is In The “Seasoning”

Can it get much hotter here in Alabama?     Experience tells me we’ve still got a long time to go before any cool downs occur…..like maybe December!     Anyway, it’s usually too hot to cook or even want anything remotely heavy to eat in the evening but recently I did turn on the oven and cooked a good ol’ summertime Southern meal.

My co-worker has put in a garden (her first) this year.     One day she surprised me with a big bag of fresh picked squash.      So that made me want to have all the fixin’s that go along with summertime vegetables.     Here’s the menu:   Baked chicken, cooked squash w/onions, fresh sliced tomatoes, green onions, and of course, cornbread.

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I just sliced the squash and a purple onion, covered with water, and steamed until tender.   

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Nothing fancy for the baked chicken…..I covered the chicken with cream of celery soup and baked at 350 degrees until done.     Of course, I used my “special seasoning” and I will share the famous recipe to at the end of this post.

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Here’s the chicken ready for the oven

Now I’m not saying you have to be from the south to make the BEST cornbread, but I’m sure it helps!     Here’s how I make cornbread:

You have to use a seasoned black skillet….nothing else will do.     Pre-head the oven to 450 degrees.  Put a little oil in the skillet and heat the skillet in the oven for about 5-10 minutes.

Basic Cornbread (from the back of the Martha White mix):

1 egg beaten

1 1/3 cups buttermilk

1/4 cup oil

2 cups Martha White Buttermilk Self-Rising Corn Meal Mix

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After your cornbread is nicely browned and you’ve removed it from the oven, turn it out on a large platter.     Sometimes some of the “crust” will stick to the bottom of your skillet….that’s okay.

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You will have the best tasting cornbread around!

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And here’s a plate full of the most mouthwatering food you’ll ever eat!

For dessert, I served strawberries and ice cream in these pretty acrylic dessert dishes I picked up at K-Mart on sale:

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Now for the “secret seasoning” which is House Seasoning made famous by Paula Deen!    The recipe is in the back of her cookbook entitled “The Lady & Sons Savannah Country Cookbook”.  I can’t recommend this cookbook enough….my daughter and I “share” this book, passing it back and forth.    I guess I’m going to have to buy another one so I can keep it at home:


1 cup salt

1/2 cup black pepper

1/4 cup garlic powder.

Mix well.   Store in shaker near stove for convenience

This made a generous amount of seasoning which I just poured into some empty glass seasoning jars I already had.      It is the perfect seasoning for almost anything!


Well, can you believe it’s almost the 4th of July!    Where has this year gone???    We’ll be spending it on the lake trying to stay cool, taking the boat out for a spin, and playing with the grandbabies in the water.      Here’s a few pics from last year….I can’t wait!

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I hope everyone has a fun and safe 4th of July!     See ya’ll next week….



Janell @ House of Fifty said...

Yum...and you make it sound so easy! (and look so pretty!) Have a great 4th! Janell

Southern Lady said...

Judy, your "good ole southern cooking" made my mouth water! I'd like to try your chicken recipe sometime. It sounds (and looks) delicious.

Best wishes to you and your family for a fun and safe 4th.

Just a little something from Judy said...

I enjoy every single visit to this beautiful, informative blog. My cornbread never tastes as good as I've had in some restaurants, now I know how to do the step by step process. Love how you share recipes and total dinners.

Jet skiing on the lake and being with those you love, what could be better! Happy July 4th!

Stacey said...

Your dinner looks wonderful! The lake does too. Have fun!

Nina said...

You are so right about the heat in Alabama. We're down here on the Gulf Coast and the temp is topping 100 every day with very little rain. But the garden is surviving and I've put up a bunch of snap beans, tomatoes, and corn. And we've been eating lots of fresh veggies too. I also use your secret seasoning. I keep it in a shaker can by the range and put it on everything except dessert. Happy 4th!

Sue said...

Sounds good, sounds easy, wounds like I have to try this! Have a really nice 4th of July celebration! :-) Sue

Rhoda @ Southern Hospitality said...

Oh yes maam! Some good ole' Southern food. Hope ya'll have a great 4th. xo

Justabeachkat said...

Yum! It all looks wonderful to me. I love this time of the year. All the fresh veggies and fruits.

Happy 4th!

Sherri said...

Judy, hope your 4th was a great one!

Unknown said...

Mmmm.. I love fresh squash. Hope you had a Happy Fourth of July!

Teresa said...

Love it- thanks for the recipe.
Happy Day

Roeshel said...

That meal looks sooooo tasty. Forwarding your site to the cook (my husband) who is always looking for something new to try. Thanks for sharing!

Hope you had a great 4th! :)

Nancy Rosalina said...

Judy, That looks so delish!!!!

Mason said...

I am soooo gonna make that! :) So glad to have found your blog! :)

Susan @ www.peanutpetunia.blogspot.com

Miss Janice said...

As a Southern girl...love this menu. The food looks delish!

Wade's World said...

This looks delicious! I'm going to have to try both the cornbread and the seasoning. Thanks!

Judi said...

Your meal is delish! I like how you prepared the squash with the onion...and thank you for sharing the spices for the chicken. I will have to try your cornmeal recipe...it sounds yummy.
Your pictures by the water are soooo sweet too.
come by and visit some time.
enjoy this day

Unknown said...


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