When you think of your favorite dish on the table, it is a matter of deciding which course you’d prefer. Is it a simple soup and salad?

Is it a burger and fries? Or is your favorite dish the appetizer rather than the entrée? Here at Southern Living we like to talk about ‘making a great dish,’ or a restaurant’s signature dish. Whether it is something that a chef creates at their restaurant, or simply something a home cook loves to make, the perfect dish can be something as simple as a well-made mac and cheese. Sometimes the perfect dish is what defines regional cuisine, like red beans and rice, or crawfish étoufée.

Maybe it is just thinking about what makes regional barbecue great: whether that sauce tastes more like vinegar, or it is a little sweeter instead. When we think of a great dish, it is all about what tastes great, from a quick-fix supper, or a sheet-pan supper to a fine-dining experience at a James Beard award-winning restaurant. From soups to salads, from sandwiches to casseroles, from tacos to burgers to desserts, savoring the perfect dish simply means finding the best examples of the flavors that you love.

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