To know me is to know that I love Southern cooking; and, I am fortunate enough to have a very high metabolism that allows me to eat as much deliciousness as I want to (at least for now) without weighing 400 lbs. There’s a few Southern ‘delicacies’ that I don’t like (ie, collards, pigs feet, gizzards, etc.), but generally, if it is fried and can be dipped in ranch, I’m game.
Sadly, it has been an uphill battle trying to get my older two kids to even try most Southern foods. My oldest son finally started to be more adventurous with his food tastings and he recently found that he actually likes green beans – but only at Cracker Barrel due to the large amounts of bacon drippings included – yes! he discovered the Southerner within him. My daughter is the pickiest person on the planet and cannot be forced to try anything, food-related or otherwise. She is going to be lots of fun in the future (insert sarcastic look and rolling of eyes here).
To my great delight, the newest addition to our family has not had a problem with eating new things. He will pretty much devour anything you put in front of him, even napkins; he’s not picky. We have been slowly, and carefully, adding regular foods to his diet since he clearly wants them, and today my boy ate GRITS! Since my other two still want nothing to do with grits and my husband has yet to try them even though he has lived in the South for 13 years (sacrilege), I did not have great expectations. However, big boy was eyeing my grits and drooling like a puppy begging for table scraps. So, the fun began.
Having dressed him in a fine seersucker romper given to us by one of my most Southern friends, he was looking quite dapper as he tasted a grit. It was literally one tiny grain because he pinched it off the spoon thinking it was finger food. He gave me the evil eye as he couldn’t tell exactly what he had grabbed, so I pushed his hands away and delicately put a small portion of the spoon in his mouth. He licked the spoon and grinned so I could see the grits that didn’t quite make it off of his gums and into his mouth. Then he spastically grabbed the spoon from me and proceeded to insert the entire HUGE, round restaurant soup spoon into his mouth so that he didn’t miss anything that might still be stuck on it.
At first I sat mesmerized by the fact that my 9 month old fit that entire spoon in his mouth! Then it hit me; I FINALLY HAVE A KID THAT EATS GRITS! **Cue the song Dixie and imagine my baby as a little Southern gentleman** Oh, how I can’t wait until he is old enough to try the “comfort foods” and bbq and fried goodies (all in moderation, of course, as I don’t want him being 400 lbs or having a heart attack at age 4) – so exciting! I am envisioning us going to lunch together in the future where he will hold the door for me and pull my chair out like a gentleman, right before ordering a large helping of fried green tomatoes and using an expression like, “Yes, Ma’am, I’m fixin’ to get some sweet tea for y’all.” One can dream big, right?
Yep, my baby’s a Southerner, and this mama couldn’t be more proud!