The people's voice of reason

Southern Cuisine - October

It is that time of year! Harvesting your garden and picking fruit from your orchard and trading some of your excess with your neighbors for their excess vegetables and fruit. And do not forget the farmers markets. What clued me in to what I was going to write about was the bushel of pears my wife brought home from her sister’s farm. We are canning pear preserves and are up to 32 jars and should finish with about 50 plus. Tomatoes are plentiful and any dish that needs a tomato sauce in the recipe is on our menus for the winter. And as usual the freezer is still packed with hot peppers, jalapenos, ghost, habaneras, and Carolina reapers. A little jar of ghost pepper jelly goes a long way.

A bushel of misshapen, off color and hard as a rock pears makes for a smooth enjoyable pear preserves. It just takes a good peeler, a sharp paring knife and about two to three days of work cooking down the sliced pears over a large pot for about two hours a batch. The pears maintain their pale color and the flavor of the pears is intensified. The pears are delicious over ice cream, in cereal, hot or cold, and in a peanut butter sandwich.

I have always had luck with the produce from Limbaugh’s Farm. My favorite produce has been the corn and potatoes. My new favorite is the pears. This recipe proves that you can have ugly fruit that is as hard as a rock and if you prepare it correctly the finished product will be superb.

Pat’s Pear Preserve


16 cups pears peeled and sliced

4 cups sugar

2 cups water

4 tablespoons lemon juice


Peel and core the pears and then slice.

In a large boiler, mix together the pears, sugar, water and lemon juice.

Bring to a boil and then reduce heat and cook for 2 hours until the mixture thickens.

Remove from heat.

Ladle the hot mixture into the sterilized ½ pint jars. Leave a ¼ inch space from the top of the jar.

Wipe around the top of the jars to clean and seal tightly with sterilized lids.

Process the jars in a canner for 10 minutes. Make sure the jars are submerged in the canner water.

Yield: From a bushel of pears we filled about 50 half pint jars. It all depends on the shape and ripe-ness of your pears.

After a breakfast of SPAM and eggs with toast and Pear Preserves, I need something that is a bit spicier. Even after eating Jalapeno SPAM, I want a spicy and filling appetizer. A recipe from the PIONEER WOMAN seemed to fit the need.



24 oz. weight White Button Mushrooms

1 lb. Hot Pork Sausage

1/2 whole Medium Onion, Finely Diced

4 cloves Garlic, Finely Minced

1/3 c. Dry White Wine

8 oz. weight Cream Cheese

1 whole Egg Yolk

3/4 c. Parmesan Cheese, Grated

Salt And Pepper, to taste

Add extra hot sauce to your taste.

Note: this is a lot of sausage


Wipe off or wash mushrooms in cold water. Pop out stems, reserving both parts.

Chop mushroom stems finely and set aside.

Brown, drain and crumble sausage. Set aside on a plate to cool.

Add onions and garlic to the same skillet; cook for 2 minutes over medium low heat.

Pour in wine to deglaze pan, allow liquid to evaporate.

Add in chopped mushroom stems; stir to cook for 2 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste. Set mixture aside on a plate to cool.

In a bowl, combine cream cheese and egg yolk. Stir together with Parmesan cheese.

Add cooled sausage and cooled mushroom stems. Stir mixture together and refrigerate for a short time to firm up.

Smear mixture into the cavity of each mushroom, creating a sizable mound over the top.

Bake at 350 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes, or until golden brown.

Allow cooling at least ten minutes before serving; the stuffed mushrooms taste better when not piping hot.

No meal is complete without a dessert. And a common dessert at my house is some recipe of pound cake. And nothing goes together better than chocolate and Kahlua.



1 box yellow cake mix

1 (5.9 oz.) box instant chocolate pudding

1 cup vegetable oil

¼ cup water

½ cup sugar

4 large eggs

6 Tablespoons Kahlua

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a 10 inch Bundt cake pan.

Mix together cake mix, pudding mix, oil, water, sugar, eggs Kahlua with a hand mixer for about 2 minutes.

Pour batter into the prepared, (Coated with Crisco and flour), cake pan.

Bake for One hour or until a wooden skewer comes out clean

Remove cake pan from oven and let cake in pan cool for 10 minutes.

Remove from pan and let cool on a wire rack. . (While baking, whisk together ½ cup powdered sugar and ¼ cup Kahlua. Pour over finished cake.)

I watched the BBC Funeral for Queen Elizabeth II. I remembered seeing her while living in Europe and my many trips to England. I have always liked traveling around England. So be forewarned. The next article I submit will be some of my favorite Southern English recipes.

“When you wake up in the morning, Pooh,” said Piglet at last, “what’s the first thing you say to yourself?”

“What’s for breakfast?” said Pooh.


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