During our visit to Savannah, we took a ride to Beaufort, the second oldest city in South Carolina. Located on Port Royal Island, in the heart of South Carolina’s Lowcountry, Beaufort is quaint, scenic, and historic.
The city celebrated its tricentennial in 2011, and the entire downtown is designated as a historic district by the National Trust for Historic Preservation. Most of the homes date back to the antebellum period, having been built by wealthy plantation owners,
and the city has taken care to preserve the architecture and maintain its historic character.
The buildings survived because it was one of the few Southern towns Union troops chose to occupy.
Used as a naval post for Union forces, Beaufort chooses to honor its military history
and its Spanish, French, and British past with a series of plaques at Waterfront Park that share the history of the city’s colonization beginning in 1520.
For those who aren’t history buffs and just want to enjoy the scenery, the park is lined with bench swings where visitors can sit, take a break from shopping, and watch the boats go by.
Just off Bay Street, a main thoroughfare lined with galleries, antique shops, and boutiques,
is Blackstone’s Cafe, a favorite of locals for its informal atmosphere
and delicious shrimp and grits.
I can’t say “no” to authentic Southern food — or to biscuits — and I was not disappointed by the cheesy shrimp and grits and buttery biscuits that have made this cafe an institution in Beaufort!
Growing up in New Jersey, recreating this meal seemed like a daunting task, but I knew what I could make to remind me of our day trip…Biscuit Bread Pudding!
For this recipe, I started with Savannah maven Paula Deen’s recipe for bread pudding, substituted biscuits, adjusted the sugar, and added spices until the result was something even a Northern girl could be proud to serve.
- 4 buttermilk biscuits, cut into cubes
- 5 eggs
- 2 cups milk
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 cup raisins
- 1 cup packed light brown sugar
- 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 cup chopped pecans
- Caramel sauce (optional)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Grease a 13 x 9 x 2 inch pan. Arrange biscuit pieces in bottom of pan; set aside.
- In a large bowl, beat eggs. Mix in milk, granulated sugar, nutmeg, spices, cinnamon, salt, and vanilla. Add raisins.
- Pour mixture over biscuit pieces and let sit for 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, in a small bowl, mix and crumble together brown sugar, butter, and pecans.
- Sprinkle brown sugar mixture over top. Bake for 35-40 minutes, or until set.
- Remove from oven, cool slightly, and drizzle with caramel sauce, if desired.
DISTANCE TRAVELED FROM PHILADELPHIA TO BEAUFORT: 679 miles