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Sunday Dinner Is Alive and Well In The South – Pot Roast or Fried Chicken?

Growing up in the South, I remember how families would go to Sunday services and then have a special lunch together.  It was known as Sunday dinner even though it was the meal served at lunch time.  Families had all types of traditions for the meal.  Many families had fried chicken every Sunday and others would have pot roast or stew beef.  In the summertime, that meal could be served outside and become a picnic.  I really thought the tradition had gone away until our church decided to change the service time of the later Sunday morning service.  Boy that didn’t go over well and many families were upset as they always went to service and then ate lunch together.  I will say that many families now go out together to a favorite restaurant for their Sunday “Dinner.”

As Mr. D and I were traveling home from Morehead City in July, we stopped in Kinston for some wonderful barbecue.  We realized we were coming close to the 12 Noon Sunday Dinner time but didn’t think much about it.  I will tell you that Kinston is in the farmland of eastern North Carolina.  I was astounded at the families that gathered at King’s Barbecue for lunch.  There were tables with 15 or so family members at the table and they did not all arrive at the same time.  That made me think that King’s might have been a great central location to come together.  Or they could just agree with me that King’s has some wonderful barbecue and eating it every Sunday wouldn’t be so bad.

Thinking of the Sunday Dinner tradition, I wanted to share a couple of recipes with you. The first one for pot roast is one I have shared on this blog previously but I think it would be a great choice for Sunday dinner.  It is fairly easy to make and is ready when you return home from Sunday Services or a busy workday.

Crockpot Pot Roast

One beef roast ( sirloin tip, chuck roast, it is really your choice,)  The weight can be from 3 to 6 pounds and actually depends upon the size of your crockpot and family)

one can of condensed tomato soup

1 bay leaf  (remove bay leaf before serving)

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

3/4 cup of water

Peeled potatoes 1 to 2 pounds cubed

peeled carrots  1 pound sliced ( I used the fingerling carrots and just cut them in half diagonally)

onion – one sliced

Determine the size of crockpot needed ( I have one of the crockpots that has 3 sizes to select from)  I normally use my 2 or 4 quart pot depending upon the size of my meat.

Spray the crockpot with cooking spray.  Add the roast, bay leaf, tomato soup, water, salt and pepper.  Cook according to your crockpot directions.  I placed my ingredients in my pot at 8 am and it was ready for lunch at noon. When I came home from church I checked the liquid and did not need to add any.  However, it would be a good idea to check and make sure you have enough gravy for the vegetables when you add them.

During the last 30 minutes of cooking time I add the carrots, potatoes and onion.  I have prepared the vegetables by microwaving them for about 5 to 7 minutes per vegetable.  I do microwave the carrots, onions and potatoes individually in 1/2 cup of water.  I drain them and add them to the roast. I pour the gravy over the vegetables and let them cook for the 30 minutes.

Mr. D’s Mother made fried chicken every Sunday for lunch even though she never attended Sunday Services. The recipe I am sharing with you for Southern Fried Chicken comes from James Villas the Glory of Southern Cooking.  His recipe for perfect Southern fried chicken is the way I saw my Mother, Granny and Dale’s Mother prepare their chicken so he could be right that it is perfect.  You can tell by his introduction how passionate James is about the preparation of Southern Fried Chicken.

southern fried chicken

I think it is a wonderful tradition to be together as a family and share a meal.  I also know many Southern women that have worked and planned to make sure the tradition continued.  I do believe the idea of Jello congealed salad or broccoli casserole must have been created by a Southern lady for a Southern Sunday Dinner.

Mr. D and I usually eat Sunday Dinner every Sunday at home.  First of all, the restaurants are very crowded at lunch time and second, I have been preparing Sunday Dinner for us for almost 45 years.  It has become a Southern tradition in our home for sure.

Thanks for stopping by.

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