Alabama Living again sponsored a cooking competition at the Alabama National Fair, marking the eighth year the magazine has helped judge the annual contest in the fair’s Creative Living Center.
The fair, sponsored by the Kiwanis Club of Montgomery, draws thousands of visitors from across central Alabama. The recent fair’s cooking contest theme was a new one, “What’s Your Heritage?” It drew recipes reflecting the background of the entrants. The winners included cuisine from Native American culture, West Africa and Ireland.
In a large skillet, cook the meat with taco seasoning over medium heat. Once meat is browned, pour off fat but leave a little bit. Turn burner down and add beans. Cook until the mixture is warmed through. Cover and keep warm while making bread.
Bread: In a medium bowl, stir together the first four ingredients and mix well. Stir in milk and mix until the dough comes together. You may need more flour to handle the dough. Knead the dough until smooth on a lightly floured surface. Let rest for five minutes.
Heat oil in a large, deep, heavy skillet to 365 degrees. Oil should be at least 1½ inches deep. Cut dough into 4 to 5 equal parts and flatten each part out into a thin circle. Fry breads in hot oil until golden on both sides, turning only one time. Drain on paper towel.
Top each bread with meat mixture and add toppings of choice.
Joseph Goins, Montgomery
Rinse and pat dry chicken pieces. Place in a Ziploc bag. Add the next six ingredients and seal bag. Shake to coat chicken. Marinate for 1 to 24 hours if desired. Pour chicken into crockpot and add chopped peppers and sliced onion. Drizzle with olive oil. Toss to coat. Cook on high for 4 hours or until chicken is tender. Serve with mashed potatoes.
Nicole Penn, Eclectic
Cut and dice potatoes and cook on stove top until tender. Cook fresh-cut corn on stove top on medium for 30 minutes. Set aside. In a large pot, sauté onion and bell pepper until onion is transparent, then add stew beef. Cook on medium heat for 15 minutes, then add water, brown gravy mix and cream of mushroom soup. Continue to cook on medium, stirring often.
Cook cabbage in pot on stove top with butter. Add balsamic vinegar, garlic, parsley and pepper. Stir well. Continue to stir until cabbage is soft and transparent. Spray the bottom of your baking dish with Pam cooking spray. Roll out one can of crescent rolls and place on bottom of the dish. Add potatoes and corn, then cabbage, then meat mixture with mushroom soup on top of cabbage. Add second can of crescent rolls on top in single layer. Brush on egg white wash. Bake at 360 degrees for 30 minutes or until top is golden brown. Sprinkle black pepper on top.
Mary Lyons, Tallassee
This story originally appeared in Alabama Living magazine.