Local Georgia Food Story
This has been submitted to BlogHer for their upcoming ebook. Who knows they may accept one of them. The first food story is here.
The little town had a BP gas station on Georgia Highway 15 that had the crispiest and juiciest fried chicken I have ever eaten. The cooks started frying chickens at about nine A.M. and by eleven they were selling them. If you arrived at one o'clock you would not find a chicken wing. It would be a tragedy too. I seldom left the prison for lunch but one of my co-workers would bring me food from various places in town. Hole in the wall restaurants like the BP. The food was delicious. Sometimes odd, like chicken sandwiches with the bones still in the chicken. Apparently it is a regional preference to leave the bone in their sandwiches. We often enjoyed collards, turnip greens, and cornbread just like my Granny makes.
When I resigned from my job Mr. Mussey asked me out for lunch. We drove just outside of the town square by the historic courthouse and turned into a long steep dirt drive. Back in the piney woods was a shabby old house. There was no restaurant sign but Mr. Mussey assured me it was a restaurant. I was brave. I cared for felons who were convicted of heinous crimes after all. I could eat anywhere. Once. We walked into the house and it did appear to be a dining establishment. It had a counter and a few 1950's era booths. It was drab, sparse, and there was no menu. A man at the counter asked what we wanted to drink. I asked for unsweet iced tea. He laughed and said "Everything here comes with sugar, Suga!" Alrighty then, I thought and ordered a Coke. Since there was not a menu I suggested Mr. Mussey order for the both of us. We had a hamburger and steak fries. It was no ordinary burger like the BP fried chicken was no ordinary chicken. It was a homemade beef patty and perfectly cooked. The fries were not frozen. They were cut, fried, and possibly fried again. At the time I was enjoying them immensely and I did not determine how they were cooked. It's funny when I think of that stressful administrative job it is accompanied by memories of food. The comfort of southern soul food with it's resourceful, thrifty, and nuanced flavors. I have not readily dismissed a "greasy spoon" since then.