Southern Plate Sunday Dinner
Read Christy Jordan's blog SouthernPlate.com and you'll know how much she appreciates tradition—including gathering around the table after church. Her relaxed, confident attitude toward cooking and her love of family have earned Christy legions of faithful followers.
"I try to talk in plain terms and show the food the way it would look if you did it at your house," she says. It's unpretentious, budget-conscious family fare. "We're making food to eat here, not to build a shrine to!" she quips.
Like Family Reunions
"I like to cook a big meal to share with our friends and their kids," Christy says. "I make anything I'm in the mood to cook: ham, Jordan Rolls, a couple gallons of tea, maybe some casseroles. My favorite meals are like family reunions—real casual."
Recipe: Apple Julep
A perfect drink for fall, this recipe may be made ahead and chilled. Double or triple it for larger groups or to keep in the refrigerator for sippin'.
Wildflowers in Vases
Christy suggests keeping decor casual with wildflowers and grasses.
Recipe: Vidalia-Honey Vinaigrette
Christy tosses her Vidalia-Honey Vinaigrette over mixed greens, chopped apples, dried cranberries, and toasted pecans.
Quilt Table Coverings
Christy and her mom, Janice, are both quilters and use quilts as decorative table coverings over casual muslin or cotton.
Christy has always loved the way Southerners see food as a way to bring friends and family together—and the way it connects one generation to the next. Most of her recipes have come from her mother and grandmothers, which is why she encourages people to get in the kitchen with their kids and pass it along. "Cooking is a way of handing down the history of your family," she says.
Photo: Katy Rose and Brady Jordan (left) with their friends Benjamin and Sophie Shull