Whether we like it or not, one of the activities most of us have been doing a lot of during this crazy time is cooking at home. As restaurants begin to open up, but travel still may be limited, we thought it would be fun to recreate a few of our favorite Franklin dishes for folks to enjoy at home!
We cherish our local restaurants, and if you’re local, please continue to support them in any way you can, whether it’s through take-out or dine-in if you live in town. However, if you don’t live nearby, we hope that these recipes will inspire you to enjoy a Franklin themed dinner or happy hour at home!
As a disclaimer, these are not the exact recipes, just inspired by some of my personal favorites, adapted for the home cook. A few of these even feature several store-bought ingredients, making them a breeze to whip up if you need a little pick me up. Happy cooking y’all!
Cork and Cow Black Mamba
This is the perfect spring cocktail, blackberries are readily available this time of year and the bourbon is an unexpected southern twist in this drink. No need to have a fully stocked bar, just a few simple, fresh ingredients, and you’ll have yourself a refreshing Cork and Cow style cocktail!
Makes 1 cocktail
– 2 mint leaves
– 4-5 blackberries
– 1 tsp lemon juice
– 1/2 ounce simple syrup (optional)
– 1.5-ounce Makers Mark Bourbon
– 1 can of Ginger Beer
1) Muddle mint, blackberries, and lemon juice in the bottom of a cocktail glass until berries are broken down
2) Add Makers Mark and simple syrup (add syrup if you prefer a sweeter drink) and then stir well
3) Top with ginger beer to fill the glass, garnish with a lemon slice.
Gray’s on Main Bacon Wrapped Figs
My go-to appetizer when dining at Gray’s on Main is these bacon-wrapped figs. The sweet and savory combination in this dish is absolutely mouthwatering and relatively easy to make at home!
4-6 appetizer servings
– 1/2 cup Balsamic Vinegar
– 16 dried figs
– 1 oz goat cheese
– 8 oz smokey bacon (not thick cut)
1) Preheat Oven to 400 degrees.
2) For the balsamic reduction, place vinegar in a skillet and bring to a slight boil, reduce heat to medium for 8-10 minutes until vinegar is thick and syrupy.
3) Use a small, sharp knife to cut a slit halfway through each fig, use the knife to place a small amount of got cheese in the opening.
4) Cut each bacon slice in half, and wrap each fig with a half slice of bacon, secure with a toothpick.
5) Place the wrapped figs in a cast-iron skillet (or other ovenproof skillets) for 10-12 minutes. Turn the figs over and broil on low for 3-4 more minutes until bacon is crisp.
6) Once the figs are done, drizzle the balsamic reduction over the figs, tossing to coat each one in the syrup.
Meridee’s Breadbasket Chicken Salad
The chicken salad at Meridees Breadbasket is a local favorite for sure. Hellman’s mayo is a staple here along with the cracked black pepper. Serve it alongside fruit salad and buttered cinnamon raisin bread for a true Meridee’s themed lunch.
– 4 cups of chopped, cooked chicken
– 1/2 cup celery
– 3/4 cup Hellman’s Mayonnaise
– 2 teaspoons lemon juice
– 3/4 tsp cracked black pepper
– 1/2 teaspoon salt
1) in a large bowl stir together all ingredients gently, until well combined. Serve chilled.
Bishop’s Meat & 3 Mac and Cheese
Bishop’s Mac and Cheese is comfort food at its finest. This creamy, delectable dish might just become a staple recipe if you can’t get to the real thing. Lots of cheese is the name of the game here, so treat yourself!
16 oz macaroni
2 cups sharp cheddar, freshly grated
2 cups Monterey Jack, freshly grated
4 oz Velveeta, cubed
1/2 stick butter
1 cup half and half
1/2 cup milk
2 teaspoons Worcestershire
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees
2) Boil macaroni for 6-7 minutes, drain, and set aside.
3) Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat, once melted, add milk and half-and-half. Remove from heat, and add 1 cup of the cheddar, and all of Monterey Jack and Velveeta. Stir until cheeses are melted.
4) Once melted, add in the Worcestershire, salt, pepper, and cooked macaroni. Stir together until well combined.
5) Pour into a 13×9 dish, top with remaining cup of cheddar, and bake for 20-25 minutes.
Tennessee Pound Cake from Puckett’s Grocery & Restaurant
Puckett’s makes pound cake better with butter, of course! With a store-bought pound cake and caramel sauce, you are on your way to a mouthwatering, easy-breezy dessert!
– Store-bought pound cake, thawed if frozen, cut into 1 inch thick slices
– 1/4 cup butter, divided
– Store-bought caramel sauce
– Vanilla Ice Cream
1) Melt half of the butter in a large skillet on medium heat, once melted, add 4 slices of cake. Cook for 1-2 minute son each side until a golden crust is formed.
2) Repeat with remain butter and 4 more slices of cake.
3) Top warm cake with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and warm caramel sauce.