Southern Cooking with Andy Bedwell


Andy’s Homemade Chili, Easy White Chili and Mother’s Coconut Pie

Pumpkins piled high in roadside stands and supermarkets signal the coming of fall in the South. Summer may be over but you can still have a taste of the season. My mind floods with the beauty of the vegetables that I have in my freezer and in my canning jars. Now it is time to enjoy the sweet harvest of summer. Doug and I both love any kind of soup that I can put together. In fact, chili is simmering in a pot for our dinner tonight. Soup’s on!

Andy’s Homemade Chili

Two pounds ground chuck (cooked and browned)

One large onion, chopped

One package French’s Chili-O seasoning mix

Two or three cans of chili beans or pinto beans

Lots of chopped tomatoes (You can’t have too many)

One can of Rotel tomatoes

One half cup Heinz Ketchup (I have to have a little Heinz)

Shake of garlic powder

Three shakes of Worcestershire sauce (Anytime that I use beef, I always use a little Worcestershire. Do not ask me why.)


Black pepper

One tablespoon sugar (Anytime that I use fresh tomatoes, I always use a little sugar. This rule came from my mother’s kitchen.)

After browning the ground chuck, I add all of the other remaining ingredients to a large pot. Let it come to a boil and turn down to a simmer for several hours. At this point, you may need to add some water.

Andy’s Note: I know all of you have your own recipe but I just wanted you to know how I made mine. In fact, I would love to know how all of you put your chili together.

Easy White Chili

3 chicken breasts, boiled and deboned

2 cans Northern Beans, drained

1 pound Velveeta cheese

1 onion, sautéed

2 cups broth

1 can Rotel tomatoes

2 cans cream of chicken soup

2 cans Shoe Peg corn, drained

Mix and simmer for 15 minutes. Serve over tortilla chips.

Andy’s Note: If I have fresh tomatoes, I always add a few. This is so easy and so good. One reason that I enjoy making different soups is that you may add anything that you prefer. My sister Mary and I love to use chow mein noodles with our different soups.

Mother’s Coconut Pie

1 cups sugar

2 cups milk (whole)

3 1/2 heaping tablespoons flour

4 eggs, divided

1/4 stick margarine

1/2 tablespoon

lemon flavoring (this is the hidden secret of her pie)

1/2 bag of coconut

1 baked deep dish pie crust

Mix sugar and flour together. Add milk, four egg yolks and margarine. I begin cooking this on medium heat  and then turn down to simmer until it is thick, stirring constantly. When thick, add lemon flavoring and coconut. My mother always had tall meringues on her pies but I usually use whipping cream.

Andy’s Note: I sometimes forget how wonderful this pie tastes.  It is a classic, it is not that complicated to make, and it is absolutely delicious!  You must remember that when you serve chili or soups, you have to end the meal with a creamy, luscious dessert. My mother was known for this coconut pie recipe.

Yah, Alabama football teams! Roll Tide and War Eagle!

Happy Fall Cooking,

Andy Bedwell

“Southern Cooking with Andy Bedwell” can be purchased at Alabama Gift Company in downtown Gadsden and The Messenger on Rainbow Drive.

Latest News

City of Gadsden and Gadsden State continue partnership
Free events planned for Poetry Month
Pinwheel Ceremony brings awareness to child abuse advocacy
Downtown Walking tours now underway
3rd Annual Autism Conference returns to Etowah County

Latest Sports News

Southside's Rose highlights All-Messenger girls basketball
Gaston's Merriman leads off All-Messenger boys basketball
Local teacher/coach opens sports facility
Five local teams ranked in latest ASWA baseball, softball polls
Ashville finishes runner-up at Guntersville meet