As you know I try and always have a theme for the tailgate and to not repeat menus (save for LSU). This summer I took a trip to Memphis and had forgotten what influence the rich Mississippi Delta had on parts of TN and MS. I know Oxford is not in the Delta, but it is close enough not to escape its influence. When I start thinking of foods and drinks from the Delta I think fried chicken, catfish and sweet tea.
So, I started looking at some unique ways of using sweet tea. I found several people using it in brines, dressings and of course drinks. It also has me thinking of un-sweet tea and how I can use the bitterness in some dishes. I reached out to my friend Brian with some menu ideas, and he had the idea of using some flavored teas as well. Thanks Brian!
If you have ever been to The Grove for a tailgate in Oxford, you know that they go all out on the decorations. So, this week we are going to try and dress the tailgate up a little bit. With a 5:30 kick-off we have a little more time to get things set-up.
Here are my initial thoughts on the tailgate, though I may change some things up.
- Hotty Toddy Sweet Tea and Berry Punch
- Flim Flam Grilled Peppers with Cream Cheese and Bacon
- Bim Bam Crunchy Okra
- By Damn Late Summer Salad (summer fruits) with a sweet tea dressing
- Mixed Summer Salad with Sweet Tea Vinaigrette
- Tea and Coconut Infused Jasmine Rice
- Sweet Tea Brined Fried Chicken
- Grilled Catfish with an Orange Tea Reduction Sauce
I may change some of this up, but that is the general idea. With a 5:30 kickoff, I am trying to have the main lunch off around 2:30 and will have appetizers ready to cook as folks start rolling in. Please let me know if you will be there, I am not sure what to expect numbers wise and would like to make sure I am in the ballpark with the amount of food I cook.
If you are staying home for the game, give my grilled grit cakes a try. The Recipe can be found right here.