Glennis at Ican'tbelieveweate's site is the host this month at Food 'N Flix. The August movie is The Help and what a great choice.
This movie was so good…..it was funny, it was sad and I found myself getting surprisingly emotional over certain scenes. Where the producers found the cars, the clothes and furnishings for this movie I don’t know ……but it sure was a blast from my childhood. I remember the hairstyles, handbags……so many things. But my experience and memories aren’t from a southern child’s point of view.
I did not grow up in the south nor was I from a high society family. Blue color Philadelphia suburbs were my haunts and the closest we ever got to white-gloved snotty ladies was at John Wanamakers department store in Philly. No, not the sales ladies……the high society shoppers who had conversations about trips to Italy, expensive cars and big parties. They probably had maids and I sure hope they treated their help better than the society ladies in this movie.
The Help was set in a small Mississippi town in the 1960s. Skeeter, a girl from a rich family, grew up in the care of her family’s maid Constantine. Skeeter came back from college and set her goal to become a writer. She lands a job writing a cleaning advice column in the local rag and asks permission from her friend Lizzy (Aibileen’s employer) if she may interview her maid to get the cleaning advice correctly reported.
Once they start talking, Skeeter has a better idea - an interview about what it’s like to be the hired black help to society ladies. Naturally, Aibileen is not keen on spilling what she knows and how she feels. She'd be in a world of trouble if they were to be caught. Skeeter makes the arrangements to meet in secret – this is the beginning of her book.
I don't want to tell anymore about the movie because if you haven't seen it (and I really suggest you do), I don't want to spoil a single good scene or surprise. Go on...go rent it...I will wait here.
So much food in this movie! The ambrosia looked so very good. There is that scene in the beginning where you see an entire spread of food, all of it worthy of being on a magazine cover. And it was all prepared by the help.
In the end, that fried chicken won hands down. I can’t take credit for this delicious chicken, and believe me, it was delicious! My wonderful Southern husband knew just the method to fry up crispy chicken, the sort his mother used to prepare. He did it all. He told me he only meant to help out but then he got into it…. I am sooooo happy he did. He even made the chicken gravy from scratch.
*For the record: I did shuck corn, make rice, measure ingredients and help.
Buttermilk Fried Chicken and Gravy
One 4-pound chicken, cut into 8 pieces
2 large eggs
1/2 cup buttermilk milk
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon seasoned salt, such as Lawry's
1 teaspoon seasoned pepper, such as Lawry's
16 ounces solid vegetable shortening, such as Crisco
1/4 cup AP flour
2 cups milk
Pat the chicken pieces dry and line a baking sheet with wax paper.
In a large bowl, whisk the eggs with the milk. Add the chicken.
In another bowl, whisk the flour with the seasoned salt and seasoned pepper. Dredge the chicken in the seasoned flour and transfer to the baking sheet.
In a 12-inch, cast-iron skillet, heat the vegetable shortening to 365°. Add all of the chicken and fry over moderate heat, turning occasionally, until deeply golden brown and an instant-read thermometer inserted nearest the bone registers 170°, 20 to 24 minutes. Drain the chicken on paper towels and serve right away.
Quotes I liked: but don't read all of them if you haven't seen the movie. Spoiler :-)
Minnie: “Fried chicken just tend to make you feel better about life.”
Aibileen: “God says we need to love our enemies. It hard to do. But it can start by telling the truth. No one had ever asked me what it feel like to be me. Once I told the truth about that, I felt free. And I got to thinking about all the people I know. And the things I seen and done. My boy Trelaw always said we gonna have a writer in the family one day. I guess it's gonna be me.”
Charlotte Phelan: “Courage sometimes skips a generation. Thank you for bringing it back to our family.”
I loved this scene!
Minny Jackson: Eat my shit.
Hilly Holbrook: Excuse me!
Minny Jackson: I said eat... my... shit.
Hilly Holbrook: Have you lost your mind?
Minny Jackson: No, ma'am but you is about to. 'Cause you just did.
And this scene later…………
Missus Walters: I may ave trouble remembering my own name, or what country I live in, but there are two things I can't seem to forget: that my own daughter threw me into a nursing home, and that she ate Minny's shit.
Hop over to visit Glennis and see her announcement for The Help HERE. There is still time to join in at Food 'n Flix!
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