Isn’t that a ridiculous word? It almost sounds dirty. “Humdinger.”
“Hey, my Humdinger itches.”
“Well for gosh sake, if you scratch it, be sure to wash your hands!”
I was trying to think of a word to describe the thunderstorm we had last night, and ‘humdinger’ was the first word that sprang to mind. Why ‘humdinger’ describes a large quantity of electrically charged particles during a storm is beyond me, but I am thoroughly enjoying using that word again and again and again.
Last night My Captain took me to Alexanders for dinner since he didn’t get to take me for Rib Night on Wednesday. I tell you, he’s a keeper, that man is.
I just LOVE how they greet us with carbohydrates right off the bat at Alexanders. And not just any carbohydrate. Sweet Potato Buttermilk Biscuits.
And it was served alongside some kind of molasses sweetened whipped butter.
And you wonder why I’m fat.
(Then again, maybe you don’t.)
While we inappropriately gorged ourselves on those, Chef Smallwood fried up some good ol’ southern green tomaters for us. But, being Chris Smallwood, he couldn’t just leave it at that. Oh no…he had to top those puppies with Pickled Corn and Tomato Salad and Seasoned Shrimp.
And for an appetizer, it wasn’t exactly a small portion, either!
Seriously, this would have been enough for dinner.
But then, we took a bite from our plates (because, of course, we are gluttons and each ordered our own plate,)
…and there was no going back. This picture doesn’t do the color justice. The cherry tomatos were the brightest, happiest orange color I’d ever seen. The shrimp were so tender and flavorful. The tomatoes were perfectly fried and crunchy. And the salad dressing on the corn and tomato salad was tangy and salty and sweet all at the same time.
I sound like some kind of annoying, condescending PBS food aficionado when I say this, but Chris’ Fried Green Tomatos really truly are a masterpiece.
It was a lot of food…still, we smacked our lips, rubbed our bellies, and hunkered down for the main entrees. My Captain, being the manly man he is, predictably chose the Barbecued Meat Platter. It consisted of a slow smoked beef brisket and carolina style pork.
Mmmm. Juicy. Tender. Gone in a plaque-encrusted-artery minute. He chowed down. Oh, and don’t forget the Southern Greens….smothered in a vinegary dressing…and yes, those are enormous chunks of bacon you see in amongst those Vitamin laden greens! Wonderful!
I, on the other hand, went healthy. (ahem. cough.) I ordered the Crispy Tofu Country Captain. It was so dang delicious, you’d never suspect it was healthy. Fried tofu chunks, crazy flavorful veggies, and served over toasted almond rice…watching me eat it, you’d have thought I was from California and my true name was Bunny.
It was good. It was dang-tootin’ good.
For my sides I also chose the Southern Greens, in addition to Overnight Slaw.
I figured I needed something to push those biscuits through. (Really, Mama?)
We were full. Uncomfortable-unbutton-your-top-button-Full.
We’re talking bust-a-gut full.
So I ordered desert.
Homemade White Peach and Ginger Ice Cream.
It’s appropriate that the photo is out of focus, because we were so gosh darn full we couldn’t focus either.
Here’s the thing. All of this, plus a spiffy/Yuppy/microbrew beer for My Captain, and the bill was STILL under fifty bucks. Explain how these guys stay in business?! I have been to restaurants a whole lot less delicious, or generous with their plates, and spent more.
I have to confess something else now, too. I’ve bullied Chef Smallwood into considering competing in The Food Network’s show “Chopped.” He hemmed and hawed. But I think he would be fantastic. Any man who puts ginger in White Peach Ice Cream on a whim could hold his own on “Chopped”.
So here, dear friends, is my request to you: PLEASE, pretty pretty please, will you go to Alexanders and taste Chef Smallwood’s food, and if you agree with me, ask him to come to your table (he will…he’s an affable kind of guy!) and tell him to send in an entry for “Chopped.” If enough of us urge him to, maybe he will!