Southern Staples

Lordy, what have I done?

This is my cart at Walmart.  I don’t know how this happened.  And, yes, I am feeding a family of one.

Want to guess how much this cost?

Actually, please don’t.  It’s still a touchy subject for me and my credit card.

It took 8 trips to unload all of this from my car to my apartment.

But, a girl’s gotta have her staples.   During my first grocery shopping trip, I failed to purchase many basics such as tin-foil, eggs, mustard, flour, sugar, etc. so I had a lot to buy.

Somewhere in that cart are two glorious items that I could not find in the Northeast no matter how hard I tried.  They are critical components of Southern meals so I am just thrilled to pieces to have had the opportunity to purchase them (and soon to eat them).

Might I first mention that I could not get over the variety of cornmeal available here.  In Boston, if you didn’t know exactly where to look for the cornmeal in the grocery store, you would never find it. And when you find it, you will realize that it is not the one you want.  Here, it’s impossible to miss because there are dozens of choices.  But, I had one in particular I was looking for as it is the kind that both of my grandmothers use:

Item #1: Martha White Cornmeal

This is self-rising cornmeal and it’s white and fine (not yellow and coarse).  And, in my opinion, it should NEVER be prepared with sugar.  Cornbread shall not be sweet.  I’m pretty sure that’s in the Bible. Corn muffins, maybe, but cornbread, absolutely not.  How would you like a cupcake to sop up all that good pinto bean soup?  I don’t think so.

Cornbread should be salty, never sweet.  Amen.

My kitchen lacks a cast iron skillet, which is essential for making cornbread so I guess I’ll have to add that to the list of things I still need to get (much to my bank account’s dismay).

Item #2:  Hot breakfast sausage

Yes!  I can’t tell you how many places in Boston I looked for this stuff.  Those Northerners just don’t know what’s good.  But I do.  It’s hot pork sausage loosely packed so that it crumbles up and leaves behind enough drippings for a real nice gravy. Mmmmmmhmmmm.

This item does not require a cast iron skillet, although that would be a mighty good way to cook up some sausage patties and season the skillet real good for when I make cornbread.

I stopped short of buying myself some lard/shortening for a real initiation into Southern cooking, but I’m sure that will make it into my kitchen at some point in the near future.  I can’t help it. I’m Southern now.

I would like to end with a realization that has changed my life immeasurably.  Down here, the speed limit is 70 miles per hour on the highway (15 miles per hour faster than I’m used to) and I now live in the central time zone.

Translation:  I’m driving faster on slow time.

I feel like I’m getting more out of my day already.


Y’all come back now, ya hear?


One thought on “Southern Staples

  1. haha, I forgot tin foil during my first shopping trip too. those little things you dont know you need! Hope you are settling in ok! Make sure to give me a call soon so we can chat! (or facetime maybe so I can see your apartment?!)

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