Give a man red rice, and he’s bound to enjoy it. But teach him how to make the dish, and he’ll learn something essential about the Lowcountry.
Since 2010, the tri-county area has gained more than 100,000 residents, many of them from places where the local cuisine includes more beer batter or mozzarella than shrimp and okra. Since it’s a longstanding tradition to welcome new neighbors with food, we’re hoping The Post and Courier’s readers will help us bring this latest crop of Charlestonians up to speed on the region’s culinary traditions.
Calling on suggestions from chefs Christopher Hyatt and Amethyst Ganaway, both of whom were born and raised here, we’ve compiled a list of a dozen dishes in the Lowcountry repertory. These are not necessarily the dishes that tourists encounter in restaurants. Rather, they are the dishes home cooks prepare for family get-togethers and church suppers.
The dishes are:
- Smothered turkey wings
- Seafood salad
- Okra soup
- Lima beans
- Red rice
- Sweet potato pie
- Pound cake
- Crab cakes
- Wild game stew
- Oyster pilau
- Hoppin' John
Now we’re looking for people to submit recipes for them.
We know that many recipes are closely guarded, and we fully expect participants to omit secret ingredients they’ve sworn to never share. But we’re still hoping to collect enough recipes in each category to provide readers with a true sense of these important dishes and their varieties. In fact, our goal is to publish four recipes for the same dish over the course of a month. (There’s a reason we settled on 12 dishes, instead of nine or 16.)
At the end of each month, we’ll select a winning recipe, based on feedback from members of The Post and Courier’s Food Facebook group. And stay tuned to that same page for more information about how we’ll celebrate the winners.
In the meantime, send us your recipes! You can e-mail submissions to email@example.com, or send them to my attention at 134 Columbus St., Charleston, S.C. 29403. In either case, please include your full name and a contact phone number. And this is not the Pillsbury Bake-Off: There are no rules about yield or ingredient count. So long as a recipe works for you, it works for us.
The deadline is Sept. 15.
If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to ask. I can always be reached at the above e-mail address or at 843-937-5560.