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Southern Kitchen's favorite recipes of the year include gumbo, chess pie and even salad

The Southern Kitchen Team's favorite recipes of 2017

The team here at Southern Kitchen doesn't just look at beautiful photos of food all day. We're also in the kitchen, cooking and eating, and we're getting plenty of inspiration from our own recipe collection.

Take a gander at our favorite recipes of the year, with one from each of our team members. Click the arrows above to see all of the recipes.

Photo: Maura Friedman

Smoked Trout Salad with Green Goddess Dressing

Josh Conner, Online Buyer: Smoked Trout Salad with Green Goddess Dressing

When serving smoked fish, pairing it with rich, creamy flavors helps prevent the saltiness of the fish from becoming too aggressive. If you’ve never tried Green Goddess dressing before, the flavors could be described as “cucumber ranch” and "delicious." The scallions, parsley, and cucumber alongside add depth to a creamy dressing that unites the smoky trout and the mild potatoes.The bright sweetness of pickled onions adds a memorable finish to the dish.

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Photo: Lauren Booker

Cheesy Grit Fritters with Hot Pepper Jelly

Ramona King, Visual Content Producer: Cheesy Grit Fritters with Hot Pepper Jelly

This recipe is perfect for leftover grits. Simply shape the cooled cooked grits into a ball and stuff them with as much cheese as you can handle. Once fried, the melty cheese makes for a delicious surprise, especially when the whole thing is dipped into sweet and savory hot pepper jelly.

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Photo: Ramona King

Ice Box Pocketbook Rolls

Amanda Pharis, Graphic Designer: Ice Box Pocketbook Rolls

These pocketbook-shaped rolls bake up lickety-split, with a tender crumb and golden crust. Light, soft and sweet, they'd be right at home on any celebratory table. Even better — you can make a big batch of this dough ahead of time and keep it in the fridge until you're ready to bake.

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Photo: Kate Williams

Bacon Cornbread Dressing

Jonathan Cone, Chief Technologist: Bacon Cornbread Dressing

This classic Southern holiday side was a favorite pick of many staff members. And it's no wonder — with a full pound of bacon and a cast iron skillet's worth of cornbread, it celebrates two of our most beloved foods. This recipe is particularly great because it can be made almost entirely ahead of time and then popped in the oven (or on the grill!) to cook through before serving.

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Photo: Maura Friedman

Anne Quatrano

Mike Jordan, Associate Editor: Anne Quatrano's Fish and Potato Soup

Mike didn't even need to tell us his favorite recipe of the year — we all know how much he loves Atlanta chef Anne Quatrano's fish and potato soup. In fact, he's brought this light, flavorful dish for lunch at least once a month, and he's always sharing his riffs and improvements on the recipe. Try it once and you'll understand.

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Carolina Chicken Bog

Chef Jeffrey Gardner, Recipes Editor: One-Pot Carolina Chicken Bog

Originating around Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, chicken bog is a distant cousin to chicken purloo (or pilaf), which consists of pulled chicken cooked together with rice and sausage. The term “bog” reflects the moisture level of the dish, as it is slightly soupier or “boggier” than a traditional purloo. Our version, chef Jeffrey Gardner's favorite, is an easy, one-pot variation that makes for an excellent weeknight meal.

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Photo: Maura Friedman

Cast Iron Fried Chicken

Ashley Twist Cole, Editor-in-Chief: Cast Iron Fried Chicken

Fried chicken is the benchmark of Southern cuisine, and it's actually not that hard to make. Our editor-in-chief, Ashley Twist Cole, was surprised, in fact, at how easy it was once she pulled out her cast iron skillet and got frying. Follow our steps and you'll soon get to enjoy this treat whenever the craving strikes.

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Photo: Ideabar

Brisket Chili

Kate Williams, Associate Editor: Brisket Chili

While this recipe has a longer cook time than a chili made from ground beef, your patience will be rewarded with an intensely beefy stew thickened by the pureé of rehydrated dried chiles. I dug into a big bowl (or two) of this masterpiece during the power outage caused by Hurricane Irma. Let's just say that for those 30 minutes, I forgot the fact that I was eating in the dark.

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Photo: Ramona King

Chicken and Andouille Sausage Gumbo

Derick Jaros, General Manager: Chicken and Andouille Sausage Gumbo

This Cajun classic is a labor of love, but it is well worth the time it takes. Chock full of pulled chicken meat, spicy andouille sausage and a flavorful, nutty roux, our gumbo is beloved by General Manager Derick Jaros. Chef Jeffrey Gardner is known to stash away leftover gumbo during photo shoots just to bring back to the office for Derick. He never says no.

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Photo: Ramona King

Bacon-Jalapeno Macaroni and Cheese

Elisabeth Schrock, Digital Marketing: Bacon-Jalapeño Macaroni and Cheese

This easy, extra gooey mac and cheese recipe gets bonus points for using two of Southern Kitchen's favorite ingredients: bacon and pickled jalepeños. If that wasn't enough, it's also got three types of cheese. We call that a win-win-win.

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Photo: Ideabar

Bread Pudding French Toast

Rachel Taylor, Staff Writer: Bread Pudding French Toast

French toast gets an update in this dish, which involves cutting slabs of chilled bread pudding, tossing in a traditional egg batter, then griddling in the same style as French toast. The beauty of this recipe is that the bread pudding can (and should) be made at least a day in advance so that it can firm up in the refrigerator. Serve it at your next brunch party!

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Photo: Ramona King

Strawberry Shortcakes

Ranji McMillan, Merchandising Coordinator: Strawberry Shortcakes

These biscuits topped with strawberries and whipped cream are truly summer on a plate, and they're Ranji McMillan's favorite recipe of the year. We like to use former Watershed chef Scott Peacock's cream biscuits as our base, but feel free to use your own favorite sweet biscuits to make this recipe your own.

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Chocolate Chess Pie

Lindsay Davis, Digital Audience Development Specialist: Chocolate Chess Pie

This chocolate-filled and cream-topped twist on classic chess pie is a decadent addition to any holiday table — or even your everyday dinner table. In addition to the decadent chocolate base, the crowning achievement of this pie is the billowing mound of lightly sweetened chocolate whipped cream on top. The extra bitterness from the cocoa and richness from the cream balances out the sugary sweet filling, and it gives the whole thing a lushness we've never experienced from a chess pie.

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Photo: Kate Williams


Author image

Kate Williams is the former editor-in-chief of Southern Kitchen. She was also the on-air personality on our podcast, Sunday Supper. She's worked in food since 2009, including a two-year stint at America’s Test Kitchen. Kate has been a personal chef, recipe developer, the food editor at a hyperlocal news site in Berkeley and a freelance writer for publications such as Serious Eats, Anova Culinary, The Cook’s Cook and Berkeleyside. Kate is also an avid rock climber and occasionally dabbles in long-distance running. She makes a mean peach pie and likes her bourbon neat.

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