TALES FROM THE BAYOU: Back To My Not So Italian Roots…




Life on the bayou wasn’t always all about crawfish and gumbo.

There were other times when my mother threw together other ingredients in her attempt to put food on the table. Sometimes it worked.

Sometimes it didn’t.

I lived for Sunday afternoons because I could identify what was on my plate. I loved mother’s fried chicken and mashed potatoes. I wasn’t so lucky the other days of the week. Sometimes I would come home from school to fish head soup. Yes, you heard me right. NOT fish soup…fish HEAD soup. Do you know how freaky it is to look into a pot and have your meal LOOKING BACK AT YOU?

Then there were the rooster COMB and chicken FEET meals placed in front of me. Just in case you’re wondering…no, there is NO meat on chicken FEET, but you can have lots of fun playing with the tendons like a theater puppet to make the claws clinch up!

Occasionally, mother would try to make a  traditional Italian meal of spaghetti and meatballs. Most of the time we didn’t have the ground meat for meatballs so she would substitute diced chicken. Then there was the fact she usually didn’t have enough spaghetti to feed six people so she would substitute rice on the bottom of the dish. Being raised in the middle of rice country had it’s advantages. Seasoned tomato paste topped off the dish instead of homemade spaghetti sauce, and I imagine the “cheese” that was sprinkled on top came from the government subsidized cheese handouts we would travel to the next town each month to receive.

Any true Italian would have been horrified to have that concoction placed in front of them, but in our house, it was WAY BETTER than the grease dripping pancakes or turnip rice dishes I had to choke down to avoid being hungry.

Luckily, pasta dishes are much easier to make these days…


Close-Up, Pasta, Pesto, Italian, Fettuccine, Cuisine



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With Valentine’s Day fast approaching, it’s easy to pick up a quick read to share with a loved one! Check out my author page on Amazon…https://www.amazon.com/Donna-L-Martin/e/B00KA7DS02




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Best selling, award-winning author, Donna L Martin, has been writing since she was eight years old. She is a 4th Degree Black Belt in TaeKwonDo by day and a ‘ninja’ writer of children’s picture books, chapter books, young adult novels and inspirational essays by night. Donna is a BOOK NOOK REVIEWS host providing the latest book reviews on all genres of children’s books, and the host of WRITERLY WISDOM, a resource series for writers. Donna is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers & Illustrators and Children’s Book Insider. She is a lover of dark chocolate, going to the beach and adding to her growing book collection. Donna’s latest chapter book series is called HISTORY’S MYSTERIES. Book One, Ship of Dreams, is available in eBook and print form from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Books A Million, and other online retailers. Also, coming to the Titanic Museums in Branson, Missouri, and Pigeon Forge, Tennessee. Book Two, A Chocolate Train Wreck, was released in November.



2 thoughts on “TALES FROM THE BAYOU: Back To My Not So Italian Roots…

  • Chicken and tomato sauce—yuk. But it WAS better than turnips or eggplant! It wasn’t until I was grown that I discovered that rice wasn’t ‘normally’ found at the bottom of spaghetti dishes.


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