Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Lakeside Low-Country Boil

Photos, clockwise from top left: Lemons fill an aqua dish Betty received as a wedding gift 50 years ago; This pewter dragonfly flew over from my sister-in-law Shannon's house for our celebration; Fresh from the pot, our seafood dinner is served; Votives nestled in mason jars cast a warm glow over the tables as the sun begins to set; We lingered for hours enjoying the lovely lakeside views.

We were welcomed to my in-laws' LaGrange, Ga., home over the weekend with a low-country boil Friday night. The weather was perfect for gathering by the pool with dear friends and family to reflect on the occasion that brought us all together: Betty and Louis Lester's 50th wedding anniversary. It was a wonderful evening that eased us into a weekend bursting with golden memories!

My sister-in-law Emily decorated for the party, and my sister-in-law Shannon cooked for the event. Click the links for the evening's delicious low-country boil and watermelon salad recipes. Everyone raved about the Sea Island Cornbread from the LaGrange Junior Service League's new cookbook, Grits and Grace. Find the recipe below, and order this great southern cookbook here. For dessert, we enjoyed my father-in-law's favorite summertime treat. Scroll down to take a peek at this classic dessert!

Sea Island Cornbread

Find this great recipe on page 139 in Grits and Grace, the latest cookbook from the Junior League in LaGrange, Ga.

1 cup self-rising cornmeal
3/4 cup self-rising flour
3/4 cup vegetable oil, divided
8-ounce can cream style corn
2 eggs
1 cup sour cream
1 1/4 cup grated cheese
1/4 cup chopped onion, optional
1/4 cup chopped green pepper, optional

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Place 1/4 cup of oil into a cast iron skillet and put in the oven for 5 minutes. Mix all ingredients together and pour into skillet. Bake until golden brown, about 30 minutes. Serves 8. (Note: Shannon used a 9 "-x-13" casserole dish greased with butter, so omitted the 1/4 cup of oil in the pan.)

After our feast, guests were encouraged to have a Coke float and a smile! Served in Coke glasses picked up at Dollar Tree, floats were a refreshing treat for young and old alike.

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