Let me preface this first dish by saying that, should I ever find myself on the eve of my execution and am offered a choice for my last meal, this would be it.  Brady makes it sometimes, and it is good for dinner, good for breakfast, and especially good over grits.  The recipe he uses calls for 2 pounds of sliced round steak, seasoned, then pounded and dredged in flour, so you can enjoy this even if you don’t dig on the veal.


1 cup chopped onion
3/4 cup chopped celery
1 1/2 cups chopped green pepper
2 cloves of garlic, minced
2 tablespoons butter
8 veal cutlets
1/2 cup bacon drippings
1/2 cup flour
1 cup water
1 cup red wine (optional)
2 cups chopped tomatoes, or 1 (16-ounce) can chopped tomatoes
2/3 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon Tabasco sauce
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon chopped parsley
2 medium bay leaves

Saute the onions, celery, green pepper, and garlic in the butter in a skillet until light brown.

Brown the cutlets in 1/4 cup of the bacon drippings in a skillet. Remove the cutlets to a warm plate and keep warm.

Add the remaining 1/4 cup bacon drippings to the skillet. Stir in the flour. Add the sauted vegetables, water, wine, tomatoes, thyme, salt, pepper, Tabasco sauce, Worcestershire sauce, parsley and bay leaves and mix well. Return the cutlets to the skillet. Cook over low heat for 1 hour or until the veal is cooked through. Discard the bay leaves. Serve with Garlic Cheese Grits Souffle on page 120.

Yield: 8 servings

While the grillades are delicious with plain old grits, seasoned with a little butter, salt, and pepper, sometimes one feels a little more expansive. This souffle is delicious on its own, and is a wonderful dish to take to potluck brunches.

Satchel Paige was born here, too.

Satchel Paige was born here, too.

Garlic Cheese Grits Souffle

1 cup quick-cooking grits
1 teaspoon salt
3 cups water
1/2 cup butter or margarine
6 ounces Gruyere cheese
3 cloves of garlic, chopped
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups milk

Cook the grits in salted water in a saucepan using the package directions. Melt the butter and cheese in a saucepan over low heat. Stir in the garlic. Beat the eggs in a 4-cup glass measure; add enough milk to equal 2 cups. Combine the grits, cheese mixture, and egg mixture in a bowl and mix well. Spoon into a 2-quart casserole. Bake at 350 degrees for 35 to 45 minutes or until set.

Yield: 8 servings

West Indies Salad gets its own sidebar in Bay Tables, where it’s described as “outlandishly easy, yet elegant and truly addicting.” The recipe originated at Bayley’s Steak House in Belle Fontaine, Alabama, which is also credited with popularizing another Mobile favorite, fried crab claws. This recipe, submitted by Bill Bayley himself, originally appeared in the Junior League of Mobile’s first cookbook, Recipe Jubilee, published in 1962.

West Indies Salad

1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 pound fresh lump crabmeat
salt and pepper to taste
4 ounces vegetable oil
3 ounces cider vinegar
4 ounces ice water

Spread half the onion over the bottom of a large bowl. Cover with separated crab lumps and then remaining onion. Pour oil, vinegar, and ice water over all. Cover and marinate in the refrigerator for 2 to 12 hours. Toss lightly before serving.

Yield: 4 servings

Next: I go hunting for crawfish in Los Angeles, learn how to cook duck, and nearly choke to death on my dessert.