The best bumper sticker seen in the Lowcountry reads: “Friends Don't Let Friends Buy Imported Shrimp,” and we mean it. The sight of the double-rigged shrimp trawlers going out at dawn for the catch in our pristine waterways, with flocks of hungry sea birds hovering about to see what they can pluck from the catch is quite common. We in the Lowcountry feel the pride of watching this shrimping industry still thrive today, both here and in small South Carolina towns like McClellanville, keeping alive an integral part of the history of our coastal paradise. Many a shrimper, typically coming from a long line of shrimpers, will say it’s in his or her blood. We cannot help but make the association of the shrimp with the shrimpers, and we thank them every day for bringing us this delicacy, despite facing fierce competition from imports, rising costs and economic and safety risks.

Enjoying a sun-kissed strawberry ushers in summertime like no other fruit. Like the belle of the ball, strawberries can stand alone, but nothing beats strawberries dipped in fresh sour cream and then in dark brown sugar. April through June is the prime time for strawberry picking in South Carolina. Eating a strawberry brought in by boat, train, hovercraft, flying carpet or by other means of transportation during other times of the year from other countries, although strawberries may be in season in that hemisphere, rarely does this exquisite fruit justice.

watermeloneMAKE WATERMELON JERKY!

Slice a quarter of the melon into 1/4 inchstrips or thinner. Cut off the crescent-shaped rind portion from those slices. Make watermelon chips about the size of regular tortilla chips. Put the chips into your dehydrator for 8 1/2 hours, then enjoy!

We asked a few master mixologists to invent the perfect cocktail for the 2016 RBC Heritage Presented by Boing. Here is what they came up with:

(Provived by Michael Anthony’s Cucina Italiana)

Winter Farro Salad with Apples and Chicken

Farro Salad

 

INGREDIENTS
(Serves 4-6)

2 cups farro
½ cup Gorgonzola, crumbled
1 cup toasted sliced almonds
½ cup dried cranberries
1 cup cooked chicken breast, diced
1 small package baby arugula
2 Granny Smith apples, cored and cut into a small dice
½ to 2/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
Salt and pepper

peansriceA Southern dish of peas and rice. Here in the Lowcountry, it is made with black-eyed peas or field peas and rice, chopped onion and sliced bacon and seasoned with salt.

Keep the age-old tradition of leaving a plate of cookies alive and well - Santa and his reindeer require a lot of calories to make their rounds! And Santa has made it pretty clear that he and his crew prefer home-made cookies…and don't forget the glass of milk! To add believability to the Christmas morning discovery, sprinkle a little flour next to the cookies on the windowsill or hearth (Santa’s obvious points of entry), then make imprints that look like reindeer hooves. This is very convincing and will remove any skepticism from suspecting children.

Shake it up this year and introduce some delicious new traditions.

“The reason this is one of my favorite holiday recipes is that on top of being absolutely fantastic, it fills the entire house with such an amazing aroma that it just sings the holidays are here,” said general manager and culinary expert Jeff Congdon.