Lexington, Kentucky, for those of you who are unaware, is a food town. We love our basketball, our bourbon, our horses, don’t get me wrong. But one of the great pastimes of its residents is going out to eat. And we’ve pretty much got something to suit every taste; Thai? We got you. Sushi? Don’t get me started. Fancy schmancy steak dinner? Step right this way. But what about chocolate? Sure we’ve got our candy shoppes, and they make some amazing stuff. But in the past month a little joint opened up on Old Vine Street that is like an all inclusive resort for chocolate lovers. Chocolate Holler is unlike any other spot in Lexington, and the locals have already been singing its praises. So I decided to make a trip over and explore exactly what all the excitement was about.
Recently I did a post about a few cookbooks that were on my “To Buy” list. The acquisition of one of these books, combined with a recent yen to begin exploring my native culinary heritage, compelled me to maybe do a few posts about my experiences in that exploration. The book, The Historic Kentucky Kitchen by Deirdre Scaggs and Andrew McGraw (2013) is a terrific collection of recipes from local families from both the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. It is comprised of what are known as “manuscript” recipes, which are the ones we all know from our mother’s recipe file boxes: your aunt Edna’s green bean casserole, the famous jam cake from that lady at your church scribbled on an index card? Those are manuscript recipes, and they hold a very special place in our culture. This has always been extremely intriguing to me, and I decided to pick out a recipe from the book, give it a go, and bring you all along with me.
We’re knee-deep in beautiful weather, flowers, and just a general feeling of wanting to get outside more often. This month I have been a little busy with an overall “spring cleaning” of my home, both inside and out. But there are plenty of food-related goings on (both before this post and after) that have my attention. So let’s get right to it…
It’s pretty pleasing to see more and more people getting on board with buying and eating more fresh/organic/local products. I suppose with the logistics and economics making the items more available, a greater number of people will have access to such things. Lexington has already welcomed national chains Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s to it’s fold, and a few weeks ago they were joined by Colorado-based chain Lucky’s, and I was curious to see how it compared.