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Chef Rick is a food writer who reckons he's got the best job in the world as he gets to spend every day thinking about, writing about and cooking Southern food.  He learned all about Southern cooking at his grandmother's knee and a friend from Charleston taught him the wonders of Low Country cuisine, the delicious blend of seafood and rice from the South Carolina tidal basin.

Even though he is a native North Carolinian, he has always had a special love in his heart for the people and food of Louisiana.  Cajun and Creole cooking are his specialities.

He has very kindly allowed us to reproduce some of the wonderful recipes etc.


1 -12 to 14-pound country ham

2 tsp. whole cloves

8 cups apple cider or apple juice

Orange Juice and Brown Sugar Glaze (recipe follows)

Place ham in sink and cover with cold water. Soak overnight, changing water once. 

Next morning, drain sink. Scrub ham in warm water with a stiff brush and rinse well. Cut skin from ham and trim off fat.

Insert cloves into ham.

Place ham, fat side up, in a large roasting pan. Insert a meat thermometer into the thickest portion of the ham, making sure it doesn't touch fat or bone. 

Pour apple cider or apple juice over ham.

Bake ham, covered, in a 325~ oven for 4 to 4 1/2 hours or till the meat thermometer registers 160 degrees. Drain off pan juices.

Makes 25 to 30 servings.

Orange Juice and Brown Sugar Glaze

Makes about 1 cup

1 1/4 cups packed light brown sugar
3 tablespoons fresh squeezed orange juice
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

Mix sugar, orange juice, and cloves together in medium bowl to form thick paste. Set mixture aside until ready to glaze ham.

Makes about 1 cup

© 2000 Rick McDaniel


Brown Sugar-Ketchup Glaze:

2 cups ketchup or chili sauce
4 Tablespoons light or dark brown sugar
4 teaspoons cider or white vinegar

Meat Loaf:

2 teaspoons vegetable oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon broiled steak seasoning
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
1 cup milk, buttermilk
1 pound ground chuck
1 pound ground veal
1 pound ground pork
1 1/3 cup fresh, coarsely-ground bread crumbs
1/3 cup minced fresh parsley leaves

1. Glaze: Mix all ingredients in a small bowl; set aside.

2. Meat Loaf: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Heat oil in a medium skillet. Add onion and garlic, and sauté until softened, about 5 minutes; set aside to cool. Prepare bread crumbs in blender or food processor

3. Mix eggs with steak seasoning, salt, pepper, mustard, Worcestershire, sauce pepper and milk. In a large bowl add egg mixture to the ground chuck, ground veal and ground pork. Next add the bread crumbs, parsley, cooked onion and garlic; mix with a fork until evenly blended and meat mixture does not stick to bowl. (If mixture does stick, add additional milk, a couple tablespoons at a time, and continue stirring until mixture stops sticking.)

4. Turn meat mixture into a loaf pan an. Use a fork to pull mixture away from pan sides. Brush mixture with half of the glaze.

Bake until glaze is set, about 45 minutes. Brush with remaining glaze and continue to bake until second coat has set and loaf registers 160 F about 15 minutes longer. 

Serves 6 to 8.

From the "Things aren't always what they seem " department:

  • The Jerusalem artichoke is not an artichoke, nor does it come from Jerusalem: It's from America and is part of the sunflower family.


  • Sauerkraut is not German, it's Chinese. It was eaten in China at least 200 years before Christ.
  • French fries are not French, they're Belgian.


  • Swiss steak isn't Swiss, Russian dressing isn't Russian, English muffins aren't English, and chop suey is not Chinese; they're all American.


  • Onions, garlic and asparagus are lilies; the sweet potato is a morning glory; and peanuts are beans, not nuts.

Got all that?



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