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The Perfect Thanksgiving Side Dish

Thanksgiving is one of our favorite times of the year, and we’re sure that you can guess why we love it so much. Families and friends are all gathering around the table to share a leisurely, delicious meal. We love to host and to prepare food for others to enjoy—Thanksgiving is always a special time for each of us as we’re able to share what we do everyday with our families.

>How do you plan to celebrate Thanksgiving this year? Whether you’re hosting family and friends at your house or you’re traveling to a relative’s home, we know that you want to put something incredibly delicious on the table for everyone to share. One staple that we find at many Thanksgiving dinners is Macaroni and Cheese. Our Chef Michael is sharing one of his favorite macaroni and cheese recipes with you today… along with a topping that will take the dish to the next level.

Trust us—we know your family and friends will love this recipe!

Macaroni & Cheese with Fried Chicken Skins

Creamy Macaroni & Cheese
2 tbsp. butter
1 cup cottage cheese (not low-fat)
2 cups milk (not skim)
1 tsp. dry mustard
1 pinch of cayenne pepper
1 pinch freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 lb sharp or extra sharp cheddar cheese, grated
1/2 pound elbow pasta, uncooked

Heat oven to 375 degrees and position an oven rack in upper third of oven. Use 1 tablespoon butter to butter a 9-inch round or square baking pan.
In a blender, purée cottage cheese, milk, mustard, cayenne, nutmeg, salt, and pepper together. Reserve 1/4 cup of grated cheese for topping. In a large bowl, combine remaining grated cheese, milk mixture, and uncooked pasta. Pour into prepared pan, cover tightly with foil, and bake for 30 minutes.
Uncover pan, stir gently, sprinkle with reserved cheese, and dot with remaining tablespoon of butter. Bake (uncovered) for 30 more minutes until browned. Let cool at least 15 minutes before serving.

Fried Chicken Skins for Topping on Macaroni & Cheese
2 cups 1/4-inch wide strips of fresh chicken skin
2 cups whole-milk buttermilk
1 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 tsp. kosher salt
4 cups canola oil
4 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. onion powder
1 tsp. smoked paprika

Heat the oven to 300 degrees.
With the back of a knife, scrape away all the visible fat from the chicken skin. The cleaner you get the skin at this point, the crisper it will be when fried.
Combine the buttermilk, cayenne, and salt in a baking dish. Add the skin & gently toss. Bake the chicken skin in the buttermilk in the oven for 1 hour, or until tender. Remove the baking dish from the oven and leave the skin in the buttermilk until cool enough to handle.
Remove the skin from the buttermilk, shake off any excess, and lay out on a wire rack set over a baking sheet to drain and cool completely (about 5 minutes).
Heat the canola oil to 350 degrees in a deep fryer or a large cast-iron skillet over medium heat. Combine the flour, black pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, and paprika in a baking dish.
Toss the skin in the flour mixture, coating it liberally. Working in batches, fry the skin for about 5 minutes until golden brown and crisp. Drain the skin for a minute or two on wire racks covered with paper towels.

Fall for Our Sweet Potato Bisque

Can you believe it?

October is here and we’re rounding the corner into one of the best seasons of the year. Now that fall has really begun and that the cooler weather is slowly beginning to creep into town, we’re starting to think about all of the recipes that we love to make during this time of year. It’s the time of year where everyone begins to crave warm, flavorful comfort foods. If one of your favorite comfort foods is a savory soup, we have a great recipe to share with you.

Sweet Potato Bisque with Bacon & Goat Cheese
2 large (about 2 lbs) sweet potatoes, halved lengthwise
2 tsp. olive oil
1/2 medium yellow onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 tsp. chili powder
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1/4 tsp. ground cumin
1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
4 cups chicken broth

For topping (optional)
6 bacon slices, cooked until crisp & crumbled
1/2 cup crumbled goat cheese
2 tbsp. chopped herbs (such as rosemary, thyme, sage, or parsley)

Place potatoes, cut side down, in a large microwave-safe baking dish. Add 1/2 cup of water and cover with plastic wrap. Microwave on high for 15 minutes or until potatoes are tender. Let cool slightly, then squeeze sweet potato flesh out of skins. Discard skins.
Add olive oil to a medium saucepan set to medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic, sautéing for 2 minutes until softened. Stir in chili powder, salt, cumin, and cinnamon. Add sweet potatoes and chicken broth. Bring to a boil & then remove from heat.
Using a handheld immersion blender, blend soup until smooth. Or, transfer sweet potatoes and broth to a large blender or food processor, and blend in small batches. Return soup to saucepan and stir.
Ladle soup into individual serving bowls. If desired, top with crispy crumbled bacon, goat cheese, and chopped herbs.

We Invite You to Join Us at The Table

We invite you to join us this September 27th at 6pm at The Millstone at Adams Pond for the inaugural dinner in a brand new pop up dinner series, The Table. The Table will feature a locally curated and handcrafted menu from our own Chef Michael Stuckey and proceeds from each dinner will benefit a local charity. At this intimate dinner party, you will experience some of Southern Way’s finest cuisine and great conversation, all while helping to raise funds for a good cause.

For our first dinner, we have chosen for the proceeds to go to Camp Cole. Camp Cole is an ADA-compliant, state-of-the-art facility being built in the Midlands for children and adults facing serious illness and other physical and mental health challenges. The camp is founded in memory of Cole Sawyer who lost his battle with cancer in 2004 at the age of 11—his experience with a special summer camp while fighting cancer is the inspiration and guiding light behind Camp Cole.

Our own Chef Michael curated a menu for the evening based on Cole and his mother Stacy’s favorite foods for our first dinner.

Menu for the Evening
1st Course – Tomato Pie with Goat Cheese & Heirloom Tomatoes and an Asparagus Salad with Shallot Vinaigrette
2nd Course – Crab Cakes served with Charred Okra Succotash, Crispy Collards, and Roasted Corn Beurre Blanc
3rd Course – Confit Fried Chicken with Hominy Grits, Roasted Heirloom Tomatoes, Green Tomato Chutney, and Honey Tabasco Jus
4th Course – Chateau of Beef Tenderloin with Lions Mane Mushrooms, Duck Fat Roasted Fingerling Potatoes, Bleu Cheese Creme, and Cabernet Reduction
5th Course – Peach Panna Cotta with Candied Pecan Brittle, Grilled Peaches, Peach Caramel, Makers Mark Ice Cream, and White Chocolate Rocks

Tickets are $125 per person and each event is limited to only 40 attendees. Reserve your seat at our table now for a truly unique and absolutely delightful dining experience!

Purchase tickets here.

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