Archive | 9:06 pm

Friday Lunch at The Sugar Kettle Cafe

21 Aug


Dined at the Sugar Kettle Cafe in Daphne earlier today. What a treat! It is located just off Highway 98 — on State Highway 64. It’s just a stones throw (but really worlds away) from our neighborhood Target. Looks like a homey little place from the outside … kinda like a visit to Granny’s house. We circled the joint twice before we found a parking spot. That’s always a good sign.


The hamburger steak with mushroom/onion gravy tasted like the stuff my Mom used to make. And trust me, that is a really good thing! The cornbread muffins were soft and laden with corn kernals. There was a hint of sweetness that reminded me of Southern spoonbread. Sooo good!


Speaking of good, the Sugar Kettle’s soon to be world famous Tomato Pie was killer. In fact, I would have to say it was the best I ever put in my pie hole. “Attack of the Killer Tomato … PIE!!!”


Look at this slab of beauty — words can’t describe its innate greatness.


The collard greens were the real deal … none of that canned junk.


The Mac n Cheese was really flavorful and had a gooey nice texture.


We finished up with a tart Triple Berry Cobbler with Vanilla Ice Cream. 


The servers keep tabs of the food orders with playing cards like you see above. I must add that good eating will surely “be in the cards” for you at the Sugar Kettle Cafe. I was really impressed and will be back — hopefully often. It’s my new favorite when it comes to authentic home cookin’ here in beautiful Baldwin County.  

Here’s the recipe for the Tomato Pie – you cannot go wrong, people!

Tomato Pie Recipe
1 round pie crust           

1 cup shredded mozzarella
2 or 3 tomatoes (peeled & sliced)        

1 cup shredded cheddar
1/2 cup green onions (sliced)            

1/2 cup fresh basil (chopped)
salt & pepper
“Enjoy … compliments of The Sugar Kettle Cafe!”

Layer tomatoes, green onion, basil, salt & pepper to your own taste inside pie crust.   Mix mayo and cheeses. Spread on top of ingredients in pie crust.  Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

Roussos is Closing — BUMMER!

21 Aug


This is sad news, folks. Good eats — and even better people!

Fifty-five years after it served its first shrimp on the Causeway, Roussos, now located just south of Interstate 10 in Daphne, will serve its last dishes this weekend.

The family restaurant, which has survived destructive storms and three moves, hasn’t been able to weather a shriveled economy and will close it’s doors for good at 3 p.m. Sunday after one final lunch service.


“We just made this decision this week,” Georgia Roussos, who runs the business her parents founded with brothers Jimmy and John, said Friday. “It’s been a difficult decision to make.”

George and Zenia Roussos opened the restaurant, a seafood place with a Greek bent, on the Causeway in 1954.

When Hurricane Frederic destroyed the eatery in 1979, the business relocated to Mobile’s Fort Conde area. In 2004, four years after George died, his children moved Roussos to the Eastern Shore Centre in Spanish Fort. Four years after that, they moved it to its present location in Daphne on U.S. 98 near the entrance to the Lake Forest Yacht Club.

“Our business here in Daphne was very strong until last fall,” Jimmy Roussos said in a news release. “It is a good location and the area was very supportive. Then the economic downturn really hit us hard, like it has a lot of restaurants.”

Around October the restaurant began seeing changes in their customers, Georgia Roussos said. They came less frequently, $10 lunch tabs became $7, diners began cutting out extras like wine and desert.

The family hopes to continue operating its catering business after the restaurant closes, but they’ve yet to find a location to work from, said Georgia Roussos, who began cashiering at the restaurant as a teen in the 1970s and whose own children had there first jobs in the kitchen. Someday, she said, the restaurant might even be able to reopen.

“This is without a doubt the toughest decision our family has ever made,” John Roussos said in the release. “The restaurant isn’t a just job to us. It is our way of life.”

Andouille & Beef Burgers Recipe

21 Aug


Saw this one on Saveur’s web site. Looks absolutely killer!

Spicy mayonnaise

  • 3/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon Cajun or Creole seasoning blend
  • 1/4 teaspoon hot pepper sauce


  • 1/2 pound andouille sausage, cut into scant 1/4-inch cubes
  • 3/4 cup pecans, toasted, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 pounds ground beef chuck or ground beef (20 percent fat)

Caramelized onions

  • 1 1/2 pounds onions, thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil plus more for brushing grill rack
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon golden brown sugar


  • 6 large hamburger buns, split
  • 8 ounces crumbled blue cheese


  • 12 pickled okra pods, halved lengthwise*
  • 3 cups watercress tops

For mayonnaise:
Mix all ingredients in small bowl. Cover and chill.

Do ahead: Can be made 2 days ahead. Keep chilled.

For burgers:
Toss first 4 ingredients in large bowl. Add beef; blend gently. Shape mixture into six 1/2-inch-thick patties. Transfer patties to small baking sheet.

Do ahead: Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and chill.

For onions:
Prepare barbecue (medium-high heat). Toss onions and next 3 ingredients in large skillet. Place skillet on grill; cook until onions are golden, stirring often, about 25 minutes. Remove from grill; season with salt and pepper.

Brush grill rack with olive oil. Grill buns, cut side down, until golden, about 2 minutes. Transfer buns to work surface. Grill burgers until brown on bottom, about 3 minutes. Turn over; sprinkle with cheese. Grill until burgers are cooked to desired doneness, about 3 minutes for medium. Place some onions, then burger, on each bun bottom. Top each with okra and watercress. Spread mayonnaise on cut side of bun tops; place on burgers. Serve with remaining mayonnaise.

*Shopping tip: Look for pickled okra where the pickles and relishes are displayed.