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Day Trip: Edom & Lake Palestine

Ever so often, we decide to play hooky for a day, leaving the yard work, computer work and everything else behind.  And last Saturday was one of those days. We woke up to an absolutely gorgeous day – unseasonably cool and a beautiful clear sky. Certainly not a day to stay home no matter what you had planned. We had been talking about taking a ‘day trip’ around the Tyler area and decided that this was the perfect day to do so.

We headed out right after breakfast driving ‘north’. The trip was really nice – lots of wildflowers blooming, and the traffic wasn’t bad. Around 11-ish we started looking for a place to eat lunch. Not the same old burgers and sandwiches for us today. We wanted something special. We spied – in fact passed and had to go back to – a very unique looking BBQ restaurant…. The Purple Pig, located between Palestine and Tyler on State Hwy 155 South.

With its rustic exterior and full parking lot, I just knew the food had to be good… and it was. The beef was fork tender, the wide variety of side dishes offered something for everyone – and best of all, the portions were generous. The staff – including Manager, Deb – were courteous and helpful. We’ll definitely be going back – even if we have to make a special trip just to eat there.

After lunch we headed on to Tyler and then to Edom. Edom was having a street fair and the town was packed with all manner of booths selling crafts and food. We didn’t want to have to walk the half-mile or so back to the fair from where we’d have to park the car, so we left Edom and headed down the back roads to Lake Palestine .

 

Along the way we passed Blue Moon Nursery. Seems to me it was out in the middle of nowhere but you would not believe the number of people shopping. Cars were lining the highway with people walking along the highway shoulder coming and going. We stopped just long enough to get this picture.  

Then on to the lake. Saw a sign directing people to a public marina – that sounded promising – so we took a quick right turn. Beautiful homes and lovely condos were everywhere all along the road… and then the water – for as far as we could see. We parked the car and went for a walk. I can imagine that in the middle of summer it could be scorching hot there – but today was perfect. The nice breeze coming off the water kept the temperature comfortable. . . almost cool. Needless to say we didn’t want to leave, but after an hour or so, it was back to the car and home. Now that we know the lay of things in that area – we’ll be going back. Soon I hope.

 Recipes

 OK, now for the two recipes: Smothered Steaks with Mushroom Gravy and Smoked Salmon Dip. Tried them both this week. The smothered hamburger steaks were really good – very tender. David loved them!! I made them out of 80/20 Angus hamburger meat, slices of bread, dried chopped onions, salt, pepper, then simmered them in a gravy made of mushroom soup, dry brown gravy mix and butter. You can get the complete recipe with directions here.

 

The smoked salmon dip I liked… David not so much. But then he doesn’t like salmon and he doesn’t like cream cheese – the two main ingredients. I used fresh salmon I had smoked myself, but you could use canned salmon (drained with skin and bones removed) along with liquid smoke, or purchased smoked salmon. The drier the salmon texture, the better. I only used ingredients I had here at the house (one of the drawbacks of country living) but for me – it turned out good. I liked it – especially with crackers. You can get the recipe here.

IF I were going to change anything – I think I might use fresh lemon (not lemon pepper) and add some sour cream to ‘thin’ the consistency down some. Otherwise, not bad. Or if you’re adventurous, try adding in some of your own favorite ingredients like horseradish, cayenne, paprika, etc. Enjoy!

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