A Year-Round Guide to Franklin and Nantahala

Buttermilk Fried Chicken Squash Casserole Baked Macaroni & Cheese Deviled Eggs Macaroni Salad Potato & Butter Bean Salad Summer Succotash Salad Chocolate Meringue Pie Lemon Icebox Pie [caption id="attachment_165799" align="alignnone"

Rosemary and Goat Cheese Strata

Buttermilk Fried Chicken Squash Casserole Baked Macaroni & Cheese Deviled Eggs Macaroni Salad Potato & Butter Bean Salad Summer Succotash Salad Chocolate Meringue Pie Lemon Icebox Pie [caption id="attachment_165799" align="alignnone"

9 Recipes for a Family Reunion Feast


photograph by Matt Hulsman

Buttermilk Fried Chicken

Recipe by Lynn Wells

Yield: 4 to 6 servings.

2 cups buttermilk
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 whole chicken, cut into 8 pieces

Breading
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon dried thyme
½ teaspoon celery salt
1 tablespoon black pepper
1 teaspoon dry mustard
2 tablespoons smoked sweet paprika
1 teaspoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon ground allspice
2 cups all-purpose flour
Peanut or vegetable oil for frying (approximately 2 quarts)

In a large bowl, combine buttermilk, salt, and pepper. Place chicken pieces in buttermilk, making sure that chicken is covered. Refrigerate for 6 hours or overnight.

For the breading, combine all of the herbs and spices, making sure there are no lumps. In a large bowl, add the seasoning mixture to the flour and mix well until the spices are evenly distributed.

Remove chicken from buttermilk mixture and dredge each piece in the seasoned flour. Shake off excess flour and place chicken pieces in a shallow baking dish or large platter. Discard any remaining buttermilk and flour mixture.

In a large Dutch oven, heat oil to 350°. Add the chicken to the hot oil and cook for 10 minutes. Turn chicken pieces and cook for another 12 to 15 minutes, or until internal temperature reaches 180°.

Remove chicken from oil and transfer to a cooling rack set over a baking sheet. Let chicken sit for 10 minutes before serving.

 


Back to Top


photograph by Matt Hulsman

Squash Casserole

Recipe by Lynn Wells

Yield: 6 servings.

3 yellow squash
1 large yellow onion
1 cup extra-sharp Cheddar cheese, shredded
5 large eggs, slightly beaten
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1 cup all-purpose flour
1½ teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon black pepper

Preheat oven to 350°. Prepare a 9-inch square baking dish with cooking spray.

Using a cheese grater or food processor, grate the squash and onion into a mixing bowl. Stir in cheese, eggs, and melted butter.

In a separate mixing bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, salt, and pepper. Add dry ingredients to squash mixture and lightly toss until incorporated.

Pour squash mixture into baking dish and bake for 45 minutes, or until top is lightly browned. Remove from oven and allow to rest for 5 minutes before serving.


Back to Top


photograph by Matt Hulsman

Baked Macaroni & Cheese

Recipe by Lynn Wells

Yield: 8 servings.

1 (16-ounce) box elbow macaroni
1 stick salted butter
¼ cup all-purpose flour
2 cups half-and-half, warmed
1 cup 2% milk, warmed
8 ounces cream cheese, cut into small cubes
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon dry mustard
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
¼ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
2 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese
2 cups shredded sharp Cheddar cheese, divided

Preheat oven to 350°. Prepare a deep, 9 x 13-inch casserole dish with 1 tablespoon softened butter.

In a stockpot, cook pasta per instructions until just tender. Drain pasta and return to the pot.

In a heavy saucepan, melt remaining butter over low heat. Add flour. Increase heat to medium and stir with a wooden spoon until roux is frothy. Gradually add half-and-half and milk, stirring constantly. Just before liquid begins to boil, reduce heat. Add cream cheese and simmer for 2 to 3 minutes or until cream cheese melts, stirring constantly. Stir in salt, mustard, pepper, and nutmeg. Remove from heat.

While stirring cheese sauce, gradually add beaten eggs, then Monterey Jack cheese and 1 cup of sharp Cheddar. Continue stirring until the cheeses melt.

Pour cheese sauce over cooked pasta and toss until well combined and pasta is covered with sauce. Pour into the prepared casserole dish and sprinkle the remaining sharp Cheddar over the top. Bake for 30 minutes or until bubbling and golden brown.


Back to Top


deviled eggs

photograph by Matt Hulsman

Deviled Eggs

Recipe by Lynn Wells

Yield: 12 servings.

12 hard-boiled eggs, peeled
½ cup mayonnaise
1 teaspoon yellow mustard
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
Salt and pepper to taste

Cut eggs in half lengthwise and place on plate. Remove yolks and place in food processor.

Pulse egg yolks until they resemble coarse sand. If you don’t have a food processor, mash yolks in a bowl using a fork.

Add remaining ingredients and mix well. Place yolk mixture in refrigerator for 30 minutes.

Spoon (or pipe) yolk mixture into each egg. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Optional garnishes include sliced olives, pickle relish, smoked paprika, chopped anchovies, or fresh dill.

 

How to Boil an Egg

Don’t wing it — follow our foolproof guide for perfect hard-boiled eggs, every time.

Place eggs in a pot and add cold water until water is approximately 2 inches above the eggs. Bring to a rolling boil. Remove pot from burner, place lid on pot, and let sit for 17 minutes. Drain pot and place eggs in an ice-water bath. Crack and peel eggs under cold running water.


Back to Top


photograph by Matt Hulsman

Macaroni Salad

Recipe by Lynn Wells

Yield: 10-12 servings.

1 pound elbow macaroni
1 cup mayonnaise
½ cup sour cream
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 teaspoons sugar
3 tablespoons dill pickle juice
1 cup fresh white corn, cut from the cob, approximately 4 ears
1 cup chopped celery
2 tablespoons red onion, finely chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
4 hard-boiled eggs, chopped

Cook macaroni according to directions on the package. Drain in a colander and rinse well with cold water. Place in a large mixing bowl and set aside to cool.

In a separate mixing bowl, whisk together mayonnaise, sour cream, salt, pepper, sugar, and pickle juice. Whisk until sugar has dissolved. Pour mayonnaise mixture over the macaroni and toss well.

Add fresh corn, celery, onion, bell pepper, and chopped eggs to the macaroni and toss well. Additional mayonnaise may be added to reach desired consistency. Salt to taste. Refrigerate until ready to serve.


Back to Top


photograph by Matt Hulsman

Potato & Butter Bean Salad

Recipe by Lynn Wells

Yield: 6 servings.

3 large red potatoes (about 2 pounds), peeled, cooked, and cubed
1 pound fresh butter beans, cooked and drained
2 stalks celery, sliced
½ medium sweet onion, diced
1 teaspoon celery seed
Juice from one lemon
½ cup mayonnaise
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
½ teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives or 1 green onion, sliced

Combine potatoes, beans, celery, and sweet onion, and toss. Set aside. Whisk together remaining ingredients except chives. Pour dressing over vegetables and toss well. Sprinkle with chives and mix. Refrigerate for 1 hour before serving.

Note: Frozen butter beans may be substituted if fresh aren’t available.


Back to Top


Summer Succotash Salad

photograph by Matt Hulsman

Summer Succotash Salad

Recipe by Lynn Wells

Yield: 6 servings.

Salad:
3 ears fresh corn, cut off the cob
1 cup butter beans, cooked
2 large fresh tomatoes, coarsely chopped, juice reserved
12 fresh okra pods, sliced
2 tablespoons chopped red onion

Dressing:
½ cup rice vinegar
Juice from the tomatoes
3 tablespoons sugar
½ teaspoon salt, plus more to taste
½ cup vegetable oil
Freshly cracked black pepper

Place all salad ingredients in a large glass bowl and set aside.

In a separate bowl, whisk together vinegar, tomato juice, sugar, and salt. Continue whisking and slowly add vegetable oil. Add black pepper and stir. Pour dressing over salad mixture. Add salt to taste. Refrigerate for 2 hours, then serve immediately.


Back to Top


photograph by Matt Hulsman

Chocolate Meringue Pie

Recipe by Community Cookbook Series

For the chocolate pie:
¾ cup sugar
3 tablespoons cocoa
2½ tablespoons cornstarch
¼ teaspoon salt
1½ cups milk
2 egg yolks
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 8-inch pastry pie crust, baked

For the meringue topping:
2 egg whites
4 tablespoons sugar
¼ teaspoon cream of tartar

For the chocolate pie: Mix first 5 ingredients in a quart pan. Stir constantly over medium heat until mixture thickens and boils. Mix small amount into beaten egg yolks, then blend into mixture in pan, boil, and stir for 2 minutes. Remove from heat. Add vanilla. Mix well. Pour into crust.

For the meringue topping: Beat all ingredients together until stiff peaks form. Spread on top of pie while filling is hot. Bake at 325° until meringue is set and golden.


Back to Top


photograph by Matt Hulsman

Lemon Icebox Pie

Recipe adapted by Lynn Wells

Yield: 6 servings.

1 can sweetened condensed milk
Juice from 3 lemons
3 large eggs, separated
1 graham cracker pie shell

Preheat oven to 350°.

Mix condensed milk, lemon juice, and egg yolks in a bowl using either a whisk or an electric hand mixer. Pour mixture into pie shell and refrigerate until ready to serve.

For the meringue: Whip egg whites until stiff peaks form. Spread egg whites over pie, making sure to get it up against the crust. Bake for 10 minutes or until the meringue peaks are slightly browned. Remove from oven and let sit for 20 minutes before refrigerating. Serve cold.


Back to Top


print it

This story was published on Jul 27, 2023

Our State Staff

Since 1933, Our State has shared stories about North Carolina with readers both in state and around the world. We celebrate the people and places that make this state great. From the mountains to the coast, we feature North Carolina travel, history, food, and beautiful scenic photography.