Guide to Georgia’s Literary Landmarks

Jump into the pages of your favorite books at these Georgia literary landmarks.

Photo courtesy of The Wren's Nest

Photo courtesy of The Wren’s Nest

The Wren’s Nest: Located in Atlanta’s historic West End, the Wren’s Nest is Atlanta’s oldest house museum and is currently in its 100th year of operation. The mission of the Wren’s Nest is to preserve the legacy of Joel Chandler Harris and the heritage of African-American folklore. Docents provide tours Tuesday through Saturday, and storytellers tell every Saturday at 1 p.m. and by appointment. Admission is $8.

Flannery O’Connor Childhood Home: From 1925 to 1938, O’Connor lived on 207 Charlton Street. In 1989 the property was restored and turned into a museum with a book collection, toys, family pictures of O’Connor and a tiny desk that was especially made for her as a child. Admission is $6.00.

Mercer Williams House/Creative Commons

Mercer Williams House/Creative Commons

Mercer Williams House: When journalist John Berendt visited Savannah, he was inspired to turn a local murder case into the acclaimed novel, “Midnight in the Garden of Good & Evil.”  The Mercer Williams House, the location of the murder, is open to tourists 7 days a week. Admission is $12.50.

Georgia Writers Museum: The Georgia Writers Museum in Eatonton focuses on promoting the rich, literary heritage of the state. Permanent exhibits honor the three most famous local authors, Alice Walker, Flannery O’Connor and Joel Chandler Harris. Works and artifacts of the other authors are featured in the museum on a rotating basis.The museum is open Friday – Sunday.

Margaret Mitchell House/Photo by Lauren Cleland

Margaret Mitchell House: Tour the apartment where Margaret Mitchell penned “Gone with the Wind” in Atlanta. Guided tours of the Margaret Mitchell House are offered daily and include visits to her Crescent Avenue apartment, which she affectionately nicknamed “The Dump.” On your visit, you can also explore two exhibitions, “Margaret Mitchell: A Passion for Character” and “The Making of a Movie Legend: Gone With the Wind.”

Uncle Remus Museum. Photo courtesy of Lauren Cleland

Uncle Remus Museum/Photo by Lauren Cleland

Uncle Remus Museum: Gather around the fireside for the adventurous tales of Brer Rabbit, and learn about the life and writing of Joel Chandler Harris at the Uncle Remus Museum in Eatonton. The museum is open 7 days a week and adult admission is only $5.

Photo courtesy of Andalusia

Photo courtesy of Andalusia

Andalusia: Explore the picturesque farm where Flannery O’Connor lived with her mother for more than a decade in Milledgeville. It was on this 544-acre estate that she wrote her last book. Andalusia is only open Sunday, Thursday, Friday & Saturday. Admission is free but donations are welcome. Click here for a virtual tour of Andalusia.

LaurenLauren Cleland is the voice of Explore Georgia on social media. She loves ice cold sweet tea, anything peach flavored, channeling Scarlett O’Hara in her daily life and sharing the wonders of her beloved Georgia with all of you!

RECIPE: Chef Art Smith’s Buttermilk Fried Chicken

chicken

Chef Art Smith’s Buttermilk Fried Chicken

For the brine:

1 gallon cold water

½ cup kosher salt

1 teaspoon black peppercorns

3 sprigs rosemary

5 sprigs thyme

4 cloves garlic

2 bay leaves

 

For the chicken:

2 whole chickens, cut into 10 pieces each

1 quart buttermilk

 

For the egg wash:

6 large eggs

1 tablespoon hot sauce

2 teaspoons salt

2 teaspoons ground black pepper

For the dredge:

2 cups all-purpose flour or gluten-free flour

3 cups self-rising flour (I use White Lily flour, or gluten-free flour)

1 tablespoon garlic powder

1 tablespoon onion powder

1 tablespoon salt

2 tablespoons paprika

½ teaspoon cayenne

2 teaspoons dried thyme

For frying the chicken:

Canola oil

METHOD

To prepare the brine: In a large soup kettle, dissolve the salt in 2 cups water over medium-high heat. Add the remaining water, stirring to blend in the salt. Add the black peppercorns, rosemary, thyme, garlic cloves, and bay leaves.

To prepare the chicken: Place the chicken pieces in the brine and refrigerate for at least 12 hours. Remove the chicken from the brine and submerge in the buttermilk. Refrigerate for 4 to 6 hours.

To prepare the egg wash: In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs, hot sauce, salt, and pepper. Drain the chicken from the buttermilk and put in the bowl with the egg wash. Turn the chicken pieces to coat them with the egg wash.

To prepare the dredge: Mix together the all-purpose and self-rising flours, garlic and onion powders, salt, paprika, cayenne, and thyme. Add more salt if needed. Remove 2 pieces of chicken at a time from the egg wash, letting the excess liquid drain off. Roll in the seasoned flour. Shake off any excess flour and lay the chicken on a wire rack until ready to fry. (It is crucial that any excess flour is shaken off before frying the chicken.) Repeat with the remaining chicken pieces.

To fry the chicken: Pour canola oil into a large cast iron pan to a depth of 1 inch and heat over medium heat until it registers 325˚F on a deepfrying thermometer. Place 4 to 6 pieces of chicken into the oil. Take care to use long tongs to move the chicken and do not crowd the pan. Turn each piece about every 2 minutes. If the chicken begins to darken, turn the flame on the stove down slightly to adjust the temperature. Cook the chicken until it reaches an internal temperature of 180˚F. Be sure to give the oil 5 minutes to reach the proper temperature before dropping in the next batch of chicken. Place the fried chicken on a plate lined with paper towels to absorb excess oil and keep at room temperature until ready to serve.

Assembly: Place the fried chicken on two large serving platters and serve.

RECIPE: The Ritz-Carlton Lodge’s She Crab Soup

soupThe Ritz-Carlton Lodge, Reynolds Plantation‘s She Crab Soup

Yield = 5 8oz. Cups

2/3 Cups Onions, small dice

2/3 Cups Celery, small dice

¼ Cup + 1 Tbsp Flour

3.5 Tbsp Sherry Wine

3 Cups Clam Juice

½ Tbsp Crab Roe

1 tsp Worcestershire

½ tsp Tabasco

1 tsp Onion Powder

1 tsp Garlic Powder

½ tsp Celery Salt

½ Cup Heavy Cream

Lemon Juice to taste

Salt & Pepper to taste

Crab meat, as desired

Directions:

Sweat onions and celery in olive oil and butter until tender.  Add sherry wine, cook until alcohol has burned off.  Add flour and cook for one minute.  Slowly add clam juice, and crab roe stirring constantly to break up clumps to create a smooth mixture.  Add Worcestershire, tabasco, onion powder, garlic powder, celery salt and heavy cream.  Simmer for another 45 minutes.  Finish with lemon juice, salt, and pepper to preferred taste.  Add crab meat as desired.

Atlanta’s Exotic Bird Fair

DSC_0367

Photo by Stefanie Barber

Atlanta’s Exotic Bird Fair is happening this weekend! Breeders from all over the region come to the North Atlanta Trade Center to sell all sorts of breeds, from beautiful multicolored finches to the most uniquely hued macaws. Vendors also attend, selling items specifically for birds such as seeds, toys and cages, all at huge discounts compared to pet stores.

For bird lovers of all kinds, there is plenty to find at this fair. When my adorable budgie Jasmine needed a friend we had an amazing selection to choose from. Cinderella was just a sweet baby when we got her, but she has grown into the biggest diva around.  My two budgies are spoiled by all the fun toys and treats I get each time we visit the fair. One of the best deals I got from this fair is my budgies’ amazing cage that I purchased for 50% less than I saw in stores and online!

So if you love birds, head over to the show this weekend. You can even get $1 off admission by going to the website and either printing or pulling up the coupon on your phone.  If you can’t make it to this show the next one is on April 25th and 26th.

Location

North Atlanta Trade Center
1700 Jeurgens Court
Norcross, GA 30093-2219

Hours

Saturday  9am to 5pm
Sunday 10am to 4pm

Admission

Kids 12 and under: Free
13 and older: $5

Tickets are valid for both days
Free Parking
http://www.northatlantatradecenter.com/bird.html

525868_337136273015782_693027213_nOur names are Stefanie and Adam and we are a married couple who grew up in Augusta. After graduating from college, we both set our sights on the big city of Atlanta to further grow in our careers and lives. During the week we maintain our respective office jobs. The weekends, however, are spent exploring all that Georgia has to offer – every hidden gem and fascinating locale. We run StefanieandAdam.com to share our exciting adventures and explorations with the world.

Georgia’s Best Pies

Photo Credit: The Pie Hole

Photo Credit: The Pie Hole

It’s National Pie Day! In honor of this delicious holiday, we’ve compiled a list of our favorite pies in the Peach State. Fair warning: this list will make you very hungry.

Buttermilk Pie courtesy of GirlsGetaway.com

Buttermilk Pie courtesy of GirlsGetaway.com

Buttermilk Pie at Yesterday Café in Greensboro: Arguably the most famous pie in Georgia, the Buttermilk Pie at Yesterday Cafe is so good that Southern Living named is one of the South’s Best Pies and Carrie Underwood ordered 300 for her wedding.

Photo courtesy of  Savannah Candy Kitchen

Photo courtesy of Savannah Candy Kitchen

Pecan Pie at Savannah Candy KitchenSavannah Candy Kitchen’s recipe uses fresh eggs, real butter, corn syrup, sugar and fancy Georgia pecan halves. You can purchase your own pecan pie at the store in Savannah or online. We suggest serving your pie with whipped cream and/or a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Your taste buds will thank us.

R&A Orchards, photo courtesy of examiner.com

R&A Orchards, photo courtesy of examiner.com

Fried pies at R&A Orchards in Ellijay: What could be better than a pie? A FRIED pie! R&A Orchards in Ellijay serves up a wide variety of fried pies everyday. We’d tell you our favorite but we can’t choose just one.

Anything from The Pie Hole in Roswell: Busy bakers, tiny tables and a display case full of sugary treats welcome you to The Pie Hole in Roswell, Georgia. Slices are available daily but the menu is different every day. However, we’ve never tasted a Pie Hole pie that didn’t make our eyes roll back into our head with delicious delight.

Mary Macs photo courtesy of Foodspotting.com

Mary Macs photo courtesy of Foodspotting.com

Peanut Butter Pie at Mary Macs in Atlanta: Nothing cleanses the palate after a southern feast like a piece of Mary Macs’ famous Peanut Butter Pie. It’s silky-smooth texture and cookie crust will make you want to give up your day job and become a professional pie eater. Seriously. It’s that good.

 

 

LaurenLauren Cleland is the voice of Explore Georgia on social media. She loves ice cold sweet tea, anything peach flavored, channeling Scarlett O’Hara in her daily life and sharing the wonders of her beloved Georgia with all of you!