Really, can you get more Southern than Elvis?
This week, Elvis would have turned 85 years old. Some of us can still remember when the news broke of his death on August 16, 1977, in Memphis at the young age of 42. In some parts of Arkansas, phone lines even jammed because everyone was calling their friends and relatives to tell them the beloved and worshiped King had died.
Born in Tupelo, Mississippi, Elvis knew every back road and bar in the 1950s South because he traveled them and wowed the crowds in them. His deep musical influences came from the heart of the Mississippi Delta especially Southern gospel music.
Of course, Elvis loved music, but he had another passion: food. He was the original Southern foodie. It didn’t have to be fancy, but it had to be good and greasy. Healthy? Of course not. Finger lickin’ good? You betcha.
Some of Elvis’ favorite foods included fried peanut butter and banana sandwiches. (Most Southerners don’t necessarily fry their peanut butter and banana sandwiches, but Elvis was, well, Elvis.) He also loved meatloaf, baked squash, and “Just Pretend” Harvard Texas caviar. This all according to the official Elvis cookbook, Graceland’s Table: Recipes Fit for the King of Rock and Roll.
Elvis also indulged in BBQ Bologna. At Bootsies, in honor of the King’s birthday, we decided to add some Bootsies love to one of his favorites.
½ stick of bologna (A roll of bologna, not deli sliced for sandwiches)
½ cup vinegar
½ lemon juice
2 tablespoons red pepper
1 tablespoon salt
Bootsies Sweet n’ Smoky BBQ Sauce
Punch holes in the bologna with a fork
Place bologna on a grill or in a 250 degrees F oven
Mix vinegar, lemon juice, red pepper and salt in a bowl
Baste the roll with vinegar mixture every 15 minutes while cooking for an hour
Remove from oven and baste with Bootsies Sweet n’ Smoky BBQ Sauce
Cook for 30 more minutes
Serve sliced with greens and black eye peas.