Kitchen Road Trip: Arkansas

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This week, we’re taking Kitchen Road Trip to Arkansas. My only memory of Arkansas is stopping there, briefly, during a road trip. Someone in my family figured out there was a town named Brinkley (my last name!) along the highway and we decided spontaneously to stop there. It was at night, so we only stayed long enough to eat a quick dinner, take a picture in front of a sign with our name on it and get stopped by quite possibly the longest, slowest train in the world. Though I didn’t get to explore any of Little Rock, Fayetteville or the back country, it still counts as a state visit by my standards. Although, I’d like to go back and have some of the culinary experiences that Arkansas is known for — watermelon, barbecue, cornbread, purple milkshakes… Well, I’m not so sure about that last one, but my friend Emmie tells me it’s true. Many thanks for your help on this one, Em! // Susannah

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Kitchen Road Trip: Alabama

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In my family, we’re racing to see who will be the first to visit all 50 states, but there’s some argument (mainly from me) about what “counts” as a visit. For example, in my opinion, an airport layover doesn’t count. Driving through without stopping doesn’t count. Going there as a baby doesn’t count. I suppose any of those could get half-credit if you’re using this interactive map, not my rules, to track your progress. But to me, making a memory is what really matters. If you do something memorable that connects you to the state — such as a meal or a photo-op — then you get the full point.

With today’s Kitchen Road Trip, I’m taking you to the great state of Alabama. Even though I have “passed through” on road trips at least twice, none of them “count” by my rules. Much of my knowledge of Alabama, sadly, comes from history class, books and movies. ‘To Kill A Mockingbird,’ ‘Forrest Gump’ and ‘Sweet Home Alabama’ spring to mind. Also, a pair of my friends once schooled me on the difference between the War Eagle and the Crimson Tide, but that’s really about it. However, everything I read about the Cotton State to prepare this post just made me excited about visiting someday. Alabamans sound like an incredibly charming bunch who live for a good bowl of grits and college football, and I can’t wait to meet them! In addition to the finds below, I also came across these recipes for white barbecue sauce and black bottom pie that I absolutely must try… // susannah

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