Alot of my memories involve food. Since this is Valentine’s Day, I am specifically thinking of meals shared with Terry.
One January night in 1986, it was Terry’s birthday and I wanted to welcome him back to Auburn with a meal he’d appreciate, seeing how he was the proverbial starving student living on beans and rice. So, I broke into his apartment and set up a crockpot with a pot roast in it…you know, the works pot roast…chunk of chuckroast, potatoes, onions and carrots and gravy. I knew I made a bodacious pot roast and that he’d love it.
A couple of weeks later, he asked me to marr….no…he told me he was going to marry me. I knew that was a good idea, since I’d been thinking for a while now that I wanted to marry a man like him, but since he had been off limits due to another relationship, hadn’t really figured on it actually being HIM that I’d marry. However, that situation was resolved, and he announced he was going to, and I agreed. That was in the morning. That afternoon I fixed fried chicken and green pea salad, and we went to the banks of Chewacla Creek and had a picnic. Yes, it was January, but it was also South Alabama, and a sunny 65 degree day.
Valentine’s Day about a month later, he blew half his month’s food budget on 2 Delmonico steaks and a cherry pie. They were delicious (he’s always been amazing with the grill),and my clueless mother converted the leftovers into sandwich paste the next day. Terry still hasn’t forgiven her for that.
For our rehearsal dinner the night before our wedding, we cooked the meal ourselves. He barbequed chicken, I made potato salad,and we served our families.
I remember getting a little queasy on wine coolers during our honeymoon.
18 months or so later, and we were kind of living on love, because there wasn’t much in the way of money. We had a new baby and the larder was nearly empty. We had a piece of venison cube steak, and 2 slices of bacon. Pondering what kind of meal to fix with this, I cut the cube steak into chunks, and threaded it onto skewers, weaving strips of bacon throughout, and grilled it. It was so good I make beef kabobs this way still.
Thanksgiving several years later, all my family was with us and I didn’t want a traditional dinner, but something fun. Terry had the genius idea of a Low Country Boil. Not only do the men do the cooking, but you eat it off newspaper,and cleanup means balling it all up and throwing it away, with only a large pot to wash up. Low Country Boil is large shrimp,smoked sausage, potatoes, carrots, onions and corn on the cob. You take a huge pot outside on a gas cooker, and cook the vegetable in boiling water with a can of Old Bay Seasoning thrown in. When the vegs are done, scoop them out and set them aside, then put the shrimp and sausage in the pot. 5 minutes later, everything is cooked and you dump it all on newspaper in the middle of the table, and eat it with your hands.
Boiled peanuts in the Fall, during a football game. Terry makes wonderful boiled peanuts. You get the green ones, just harvested,and boil them in a pot of extremely salty water for an hour or so, crack open the shells and eat them. Some people base their opinion of boiled peanuts on the nasty ones from the can. Don’t. Freshly cooked ones from a new harvest are addictive, firm to the bite..not mushy like the canned ones.
Yesterday, while Eli was elsewhere, he cooked 2 gorgeous Delmonico steaks and baked potatoes, and we had a candlelight dinner. I promised not to turn the leftovers into paste. I also baked him a yellow cake with chocolate frosting, his favorite, instead of a cherry pie (my favorite). We talked about the last 25 years, and wondered what the next 25 would hold.
Happy Valentine’s Day, Terry!