Rebekah Lyn's Kitchen

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Simply Southern April 7, 2016

Pimento cheese sandwiches are one of my favorite simple southern foods. As a child I would sit at the kitchen table watching my grandmother mash up a block of cheese then mix in the mayonnaise and pimentos. When I got older she let me do the cheese mashing and there was something gratifying about it. The sandwiches we made weren’t anything fancy. Sometimes we might toast the bread a little, but this was a simple meal served with an ice-cold Coca-Cola.
The past few years, I’ve noticed a number of restaurants making more gourmet versions of the sandwich. Probably the most unique twist was at the Little Switzerland Cafe, just off the Blue Ridge Parkway, where the pimento cheese was served as a dip with grilled French bread and celery sticks. It was so good I wouldn’t mind making the two hour drive back to the cafe for another serving. A few weeks ago, I was in North Carolina taking some time to work on my new book, Virginia, and had the chance to visit a new restaurant in downtown Franklin called The Bowery. It opened last year and I’ve wanted to visit ever since I noticed it during my trip in December.
Once inside, I immediately liked the place. The decor is a perfect balance of elegant and rustic. The booths have high backs, made from boards that look like they were reclaimed from a barn, that provide a feeling of privacy. The chairs were plush and upholstered in a cappuccino suede. Bare light bulbs hung inside simple glass jars. The lunch menu was simple and there were the pimento cheese sandwiches again. One was served with fried green tomatoes and the other came with a bowl of soup. It was a chilly day, so I opted for the butternut squash soup and pimento cheese sandwich, while mom ordered the smoked chicken sandwich with pasta salad.

The Bowery

The Bowery

Our meals arrived quickly and I was impressed with the taste of everything. The soup was creamy and the sandwich was warm, the cheese melted just right. I wish I’d taken a picture, but it looked so good I couldn’t stop myself from digging in. I’m not sure why this simple sandwich is showing up on so many menus, but I plan to enjoy them as often as possible.

 

Birthdays and Markets August 29, 2014

Filed under: Family,Fresh Foods — itsrebekahlyn @ 7:27 AM
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Birthday cake

Sunday was my mom’s birthday so I flew to North Carolina to spend the weekend with her. The moment I stepped outside the airport I was welcomed by a cool breeze and the fresh, woodsy scent that always makes me smile and fills my heart with peace. I inhaled deeply while I waited for mom and dad to arrive from the nearby McDonalds and could feel the muscles in my body unwinding.

 

There weren’t any real plans for the weekend, but I was looking forward to visitng the Farmer’s Market Saturday morning. I was delighted to find out it was customer appreciation day and there were tons of free samples- garlic cloves, organic coffee, pastries, homemade pesto, homemade soaps, there was even a chance to win $200 worth of fresh produce and a fresh pie of our choosing. Sadly we didn’t win.

 

My own hometown has been trying to get a farmer’s market off the ground, but with only one produce vendor and a handful of other non-food related booths, it hasn’t gained much traction. This North Carolina market, though, it was what I always envisioned. Knots of people gathered between each booth to catch up the week’s events; multiple farmers with their fresh-picked crops; a table piled high with delicious-looking homemade bread that reminded me of a scene from a French movie; a cooler with fresh, free-range chickens; a table of fresh pastries, a lady with homemade soaps and other bath products, and even flower vendors. We bought some ears of corner and a couple of huge tomatoes before wandering into some nearby antique shops. Looking back now, I’m surprised that I can’t remember any sounds or smells and can only guess my eyes were so overwhelmed all of my other senses were dulled.

 

That evening I had a yummy tomato sandwhich, and was actually able to tell a difference between this tomato and those from my own garden. I had read that basil is an excellent companion plant and added one to my tomato area. There definitely is a difference.

 

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Launch of the Coastal Chronicles June 20, 2012

Yesterday was the digital release of my second novel, Julianne.  I have been writing most of my life.  I was the kid in school who new book coverdidn’t cringe when a term paper was assigned; I relished the idea and delved into my research.  However, when it came to my personal stories, I had a problem with actually finishing them.  Julianne was one of those stories.  I started it in 2003, got about halfway through and then life got in the way.  I let it drop by the wayside.  Six years later I picked it back up, determined to actually complete one novel.  The day I wrote the last sentence was one of the proudest moments of my life.  I had finally completed a full novel.  I then promptly put it away and moved on to another story.

When I managed to complete and publish Summer Storms in two years, I decided to go back to Julianne and see if there was actually anything there worth working on to publish.  I was appalled to see how much repetition there was in the story and began stripping it down to its bare bones in order to build it back up.  It was an interesting experience to see how much I personally have changed since I first wrote Julianne.  I looked at the whole story with new eyes and even questioned if I needed to change the main characters to make them more appealing.  Then I realized the things that made them appealing to me in the beginning was they were reflective of where I was in my life at that time, and maybe there are other people who are in that same place now. Will they relate with Julianne, Oliver, Cameron, Michael, or Gavin?  Maybe their original flaws were more of a ministry to my future readers than anything I could create now.

One of my favorite things about writing this book though, was all the food.  My next couple of posts will share recipes and snippets from the book.  If you are a member of Amazon Prime you can borrow Julianne over the next 3 months.  Stay tuned for more details.

 

 
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