This week has been a week for me to really walk down “old-school” lane. I love old things: antique furniture, dusty old books with the names of long-gone people scrawled inside the cover, old movies, old recipes, old homes, and the like. I lean toward the nostalgic. That’s why I’ve enjoyed this week.
Now, don’t think I’m crazy when I say that I enjoyed being called in for jury selection this week. Don’t misunderstand; I wasn’t happy about having to give up a day to it, but I was quite happy when I drove into the little town of Quitman, Texas, and approached the old courthouse. I had forgotten how great this old building is, and I’ve never had the pleasure of investigating inside it.
According to “courthouselover” on Flickr, “This courthouse was built in 1925 in Classical Revival style with the designs of C. H. Leinbach. For such a courthouse as this that has undergone three renovations in 1976, 1979, and again in 1981, it has done a remarkable job retaining its historical integrity.”
As I sat in the courtroom, with District Judge Tim Boswell presiding, I felt as if I were in the courthouse with Scout and Atticus Finch. I loved it. I think I’ll read that novel again soon; it’s been a couple of years since I’ve had the pleasure.
Here are my photos from the day at the court house (and no, I wasn’t chosen to be on the jury!)
It was a long day, but at least I was able to enjoy the beauty of the early 20th century craftsmanship. I next want to go down to the Anderson County courthouse in Palestine. They have an incredible old courthouse. I’d love to take my camera down there and get some pictures to share with you.
The next thing I did that felt “vintage” to me this week was make dinner for my husband’s parents last night in their home. I made country-friend steak with cream gravy, my macaroni and cheese recipe found here on my blog (check the recipe index! It’s delicious and one of my most popular recipes), and fried green tomatoes. I loved the tomatoes! They were from Jacksonville, Texas, and were the perfect flavor combination of tangy and sweet. Here’s how I did it:
Easy Fried Green Tomatoes
Four or more good quality green tomatoes, washed
one cup of cornmeal
1/2 cup plain flour
Tony Chachere’s creole seasoning (or whatever your favorite spice mixture is: seasoned salt, Dash, etc.)
3/4 to 1 cup whole milk, cream, buttermilk, or half & half (whatever is available)
Slice clean tomatoes into approx. 1/4 inch thick slices. (You can slice thicker, if you prefer.)
Place milk into a bowl.
Place tomato slices into milk for a few minutes.
Combine flour, cornmeal, and seasoning in a bowl or on a plate.
Dredge tomatoes in the flour mixture, coating both sides well. Set aside for a few moments to let the crust form.
Place about 1/2 inch of oil into a frying pan. Heat over medium-high heat until it sizzles when you drop in a little flour.
Add the tomato slices in a single layer into the hot oil, and fry for about a minute and a half per side. This will vary according to the temperature of your oil, so just fry until a light golden brown color.
Gently remove to a platter covered with paper towels. Don’t haphazardly salt; taste first, as most of the seasoning mixes already contain salt and you don’t want to oversalt this Southern delicacy.
I hope you enjoy these! I know it’s not as common a dish now as it was in our grandparents’ day, but when I made them last night, I realized that we are really missing out by not making them more often. They’re wonderful!
”Oh, what I wouldn’t give for a plate of fried green tomatoes like we used to have at the cafe. Ooh!” ~Ninny Threadgoode, “Fried Green Tomatoes”