Tomato cobbler takes top billing over meat loaf, potatoes, broccoli. All good.

Tomato cobbler takes top billing over meat loaf, potatoes, broccoli. All good.

I may have blogged this before. If so, you’re getting it again, because that was a first-time effort, and this time, friends and neighbors, I have gotten this baby RIGHT. As in Sweet Baby Jesus good. And right at the start of tomato season, yet.

If you are a Southerner, and if you were listing the canonical Southern dishes with which you grew up, cornbread would certainly be one of them. Sliced ripe tomatoes would be one. As would cobblers, of all varieties.

What if you put them all together? What if you had a tomato cobbler, with a cornbread dough?

You would take a bite, your eyes would roll back in your head, and you would proceed to eat like there was no tomorrow, that’s what.

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That's a wrap! Sweet potatoes and ham in a foil packet.

That’s a wrap! Sweet potatoes and ham in a foil packet.

Remember those old “Boy Scout Campfire Potatoes,” the foil packets with diced potatoes, salt, pepper, butter, onion, and parmesan cheese in the green can that we used to wrap up in foil packets and put on the grill? Or adapt to an entree by adding a chicken breast and baking in the oven?

You can take it in a different direction and come out with a completely different, but still awfully doggoned tasty and easy.

I was casting about for something different that wouldn’t take up a lot of time, as I was sixteen different kinds of busy, but would provide a decent dinner and would be flexible as to time to eat. I was standing in the kitchen staring blankly at not much at all, looking for inspiration, when my gaze hit on sweet potatoes, and my mind went to packages of┬áham in the freezer.

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Strawberries and cream, with butter on it. Do this.

Strawberries and cream, with butter on it. Do this.

As if you needed one; in fact, it’s almost like gilding the lily. But still, you need to set aside a few of your berries from the waning weeks of the season and do this.

It’s Sweet Baby Jesus good.

It’s strawberries and cream bread.

We have, for some cause, not been eating strawberries as much as we normally do this year. The local berries are uncommonly tart, which is OK, if a little unusual. I’m told it’s a function of how much rain we’ve had, and maybe the cool, late spring.

Anyway, I bought berries at the market last weekend because I wanted to try another go at the Strawberries and Cream Bread (recipe here), which you’ll remember I goofed up last week by not dicing the strawberries finely enough.

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Thai-ing one on

May 19, 2015

Fish cakes, and this sauce rocks.

Fish cakes, and this sauce rocks.

Because I felt like it. I didn’t feel like beef, or chicken, not to mention both were frozen. Didn’t feel like ham, also frozen, but it wouldn’t take long to thaw some out. Wanted something light. There were frozen tilapia filets in the freezer.

Aha, says I. Fish cakes! I had been wanting fish cakes since I saw a recipe for them … somewhere, that called for poaching the fish in white wine and then flaking it and using it like crabmeat, as if you were making a crabcake. Sounded good.

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Does that look like a marvelous breakfast, or what?

Does that look like a marvelous breakfast, or what?

There’s nothing that says good, hearty weekend breakfast like huevos rancheros.

At their simplest, huevos rancheros are simply fried eggs atop tortillas, with a splash of sauce or salsa. Assorted and various add-ons may include — but are not limited to — chorizo, fried potatoes, sauteed squash, refried beans, cheese, rice, and most anything else that occurs to you.

Peppers and eggs just go together. Ask anyone who’s ever eaten a Denver omelet, or sprinkled hot sauce on their eggs. The bite of the pepper, the heat of the capiscium, the tart from a little vinegar on the side, just plays wonderfully with the buttery richness of the egg as its yolk oozes over a fried-but-still-soft tortilla.

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Gooey butter cake, chess cake, whatever you call it, it's good.

Gooey butter cake, chess cake, whatever you call it, it’s good.

Y’all have read of my Memphis guinea pig, who visits periodically and allows me to try out all sorts of new and experimental recipes on him. And, bless his heart, happily eats anything and pronounces it good. (Personally, I think he periodically lies through his teeth, but I do love him for it.)

Anyway, he’s a native of St. Louis. As such, he is a devotee of Imo’s Pizza, Ted Drewes Frozen Custard, and Budweiser. (Thankfully, NOT Bud Light.) And St. Louis Gooey Butter Cake.

Well, dearest Guinea Pig, here’s a news flash for you: I CAN MAKE ST. LOUIS GOOEY BUTTER CAKE!

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Asparagus and egg; a match made in heaven.

Asparagus and egg; a match made in heaven.

I continue to do fun things with asparagus.

Shut UP. I am not being perverse. I am enjoying the prime fruit of spring in as many ways as I can manage to do so, before it’s gone for another year.

So far this spring, I’ve had asparagus wrapped in proscuitto; roasted asparagus; steamed asparagus and sauteed asparagus, the three above both with and without hollandaise; asparagus in a frittata (I don’t think that one made the blog, but it was good), asparagus in a pasta, and asparagus in a salad.

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