As chef de bureau I’m always searching for interesting odd shaped objects, even while in Virginia for my dear mom’s 90th birthday. In Richmond, VA I was hugely gratified to come across an actual odd shaped object that was both interesting and delicious. At one point in the several days of festivities, my sister (hostess extraordinaire) brought home some crispy legs and thighs from Lee’s Famous Recipe Chicken. I had never heard of it. The crust was so thick that a thigh was not recognizable by its shape but my suspicions died when I tasted it. It was greaseless and wonderfully tasty.
I’ve lived in San Francisco for over 30 years and decades go by without my eating any fried chicken since I’m not aware of any good emporia of that delight. If Lee’s was located here, instead of 2438 miles away, I’d be eating fried chicken a lot more often. (You can get fried livers and gizzards too but we abstained).
I grew up in Virginia but in the northern part, the suburbs of Washington D.C. That is the most populous region of the state but is often considered by Virginians further south as not really Virginia.
Some friends in Richmond recently moved out to a house on the Chickahominey River. No one is going to say that’s not Virginia. The river ran with the blood of Union and Confederate soldiers during the Civil War and is an example of the Tidewater region, although the salt water is blocked from their part of the river by a dam.
I’ve always had a 19th century vision of swamps as miasmal cesspools so I was amazed at how pleasant the swampy banks of the river were. It wasn’t even buggy since the flies and mosquitoes were kept down by the abundant fish, birds and bright green dragonflies.
Our friends’ house is on dry land but has a long boardwalk that goes through the swamp and out to the river. There’s a wide part in the boardwalk, under some trees, where there’s a table and chairs. We sat there and watched the natural world go by. I include a few photos, which is a first for The Bureau of OSO.