The first Yankee Challenge is to season that brand new cast iron skillet, and cook us an old fashion Big Southern Breakfast. Breakfast must include: Thick Cut Bacon, Eggs (no omelets), Stone Ground Grits , Skillet Gravy and Butter Milk Biscuits . The rules are as follows: No olive oil allowed (butter or lard only); Everything, but the grits, has to be cooked in the cast iron skillet; and Everything must be made from scratch (no instant gravy mixes, quick biscuits, or instant grits). Make sure to season your cast iron skillet the day before, by rubbing a thin coat of lard or Crisco over every surface, and baking it alone in the oven at 250 degrees for 2 hours. Once your skillet is seasoned you won’t have to season it again, if used frequently. Some tips would be to cook the biscuits first, remove them from the skillet and then cook the bacon and eggs together. Try leaving a few table spoons of the bacon grease in the pan for the gravy, and keeping those tasty little bacon crisps with it. Stone grits will take 20 -30 minutes, maybe longer, so get them started while baking the biscuits. Don’t be afraid to season everything liberally with salt, pepper and/or whatever else peeks your interest (Tony Chachere’s is your friend). And don’t use soap and water on your cast iron skillet, just wipe it clean when your done. We will check in with Caitlin soon to see how she did.
Readers leave us a comment and offer your favorite biscuit recipes, ways to cook eggs, or gravy secrets. Don’t forget to try out the challenge for yourself and take pictures, we’d love to post everyone’s trials with the Big Southern Breakfast. Stop by and give Caitlin, “The Yankee”, a word of encouragement or recipe for the challenge. There will be a PRIZE, each month, for the reader with the best pictures and story about their Yankee Challenge experience, so get cooking y’all. Post your pictures to our Flickr group here or to our Facebook Fan Page here .