May 2, 2009

Gifts from the South

This has been a week of precious gifts from friends and family. Neal and I love living in Colorado, but one of the things that we desperately miss from the south is THE FOOD! Specifically, seafood, spices, and good, strong coffee. So, at least once a year, my dear in-laws ship us goodies from home to help us through our cravings.

We received TWO shipments of southern delights including shrimp, andouille, catfish, Louisiana strawberries, pepper jelly, homemade fudge, Pickapeppa sauce and roux in a jar. Yes, you read that right...roux in a jar. The secret is out. We have found a premade roux that is just as delicious and much, much easier than making it from scratch. But if you tell anyone, I will deny it! And, what is Pickapeppa sauce, you ask? Well, it is one of the most fantastically intriguing things you will ever taste. It's actually a Jamaican concoction of tomatoes, onions, garlic, cloves, mangoes, peppers and other tasty tidbits, and it is best known for being a quick and easy sauce to pour over cream cheese and serve with crackers. However, I'm told it is also great for a marinade. It is pure yum in a bottle!

And, if all that weren't enough, we also received two surprise goodies from our Nashville friends, Joe and Jane.....Dean Brody's first and newly released CD, and a Southern garlic spice blend. All of this down-south goodness delivered right to our door in the same week. Whatever did we do to deserve all these gifts?

And one final note about a personal gift I gave to myself...yesterday I spent a delightful 2 1/2 hours at a Mexican restaurant with Susie, my childhood friend whom I haven't seen in 15 years. Susie and I live about an hour away from each other and we've been trying to get together for a few months. Finally, today we succeeded. Catching up with her was such a joy. Susie is one of those people you can talk to for hours and never tire, and seeing her brought back so many wonderful memories of my childhood, my home town, and the people who made huge impacts on my life. Being with her reminded me of one of the most important gifts you can give anyone you love...the gift of just being together. Thanks, Susie!


Susie said...

I received my gift from the south yesterday as well....YOU. Thank you for being my friend for the last 35 years and I look forward to another 35. Thank you for letting me re live my wonderful childhood and knowing all of the people who made it so great. There is nothing like an old friend. What is that old saying "Make new friends but keep the old, one is Silver and the other Gold" Can't wait for next time.

Lilla said...

Susie, who are you calling old? Ha, Ha! Yes, you are right, nothing like good ole friends...those who know you from way back when and love you anyway! See you soon, my friend.

Sweet Virginia Breeze said...

So glad you two had a chance to get together - you are so lucky to have true friends.

The pickapeppa sauce really sounds good - I will keep an eye out for it.

Lilla said...

SVB, we haven't been able to find the Pickapeppa sauce around here anywhere, but maybe you will have more luck. I think it's a Southern thing! And it is good!