I have looking forward to our stay in Alabama so much. I was secretely counting the days until we could leave the Grand Canyon and get ourselves down south again. I have missed my family and friends down here so much! But I have to confess, I have really missed the food, too.
(this is my home cooked fried catfish)
We have been in Alabama for a week, and I have eaten fried catfish 5 times since I got here. I am probably going to turn into a big ol’ catfish, with a slippery skin and thin, one strand mustache hanging out by my nose quite soon. And grow gills. And if I don’t turn into a catfish I will be fatter for sure! But how can you resist that true, southern fried catfish when you see it on the menu? I have eaten it for breakfast with grits and fried eggs. For lunch with home made cole slaw and french fries. And tonight I had it for dinner, cooked at home and served with garlic new potatoes and squash casserole.
It doesn’t help that we have found the most fabulous little restaurant less than two miles from our campsite. It is located in a gas station, which is not unusual her in the south. Pleasant Valley Grocery Store is the official name of the place, but it is a little gas station with a tiny restaurant tucked inside.
They cater to the deer hunters that frequent this area, the ones who stay at the campground we are hosting. They sell candy, sodas, bread, snacks and beer. And have the best southern fried catfish I have ever put in my mouth. It came with cole slaw and home fries. FabGrandpa had the smoked barbecue pork ribs–it was the first time I have EVER heard him ask for a to go box because he couldn’t eat it all. EVER. In 18 years.
The people who run the place are so nice! They greet us each time we come in as if they have known us all their lives. Like they are so happy to see us! The second time we came in, they asked if we were going to have iced tea, and remembered that I get the unsweetened tea. The SECOND time.
They have University of Alabama memorabilia on the walls (a little bit of Auburn University stuff, too, but they definitely lean towards Alabama) There is a crockpot of boiled peanuts over on the counter, too.
They have a pretty good cup of coffee, too. I’m telling you, if you come to this area, and don’t go to this place, you are messing up! You’ll miss the best fried catfish ever in the history of the earth!
(I have not been paid to write about Pleasant Valley Restaurant. This is just my opinion, take it or leave it)