Kimberly Schlapman oh GussieFans of grammy award-winning country band little big town love Kimberly Schlapman’s harmonies, and many have grown to love her sweet southern personality and mouth-watering recipes displayed on her cooking show, Kimberly’s Simply Southern. now she’s released a new cookbook, Oh Gussie! Cooking and Visiting in Kimberly’s Southern Kitchen. She shared 2 of her favorite recipes from the book.

Creamy Smoked Mac and Cheese
Makes 6 servings
A toasty garlic-crumb topping and a whiff of smoke really make this stovetop macaroni and cheese fit for grown folks. Let’s face it: There is a lot of sad macaroni and cheese in the world. This recipe, however, elevates the humble dish. Think of all the possible ingredients you can include—even cooked crab or lobster if you want to start at the top!

5 tablespoons of butter
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup panko breadcrumbs
¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
1 pound spiral pasta
¼ cup all-purpose flour
1 ½ cups milk
1 cup heavy (whipping) cream
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 pound smoked cheddar or gouda cheese, grated
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1. Melt 1 tablespoon of the butter in a skillet over low heat. Add the garlic and cook until it becomes fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the panko and toast until golden brown. Pour the breadcrumb mixture into a bowl, add the Parmesan and parsley, and stir to combine.
Mac n Cheese Oh Gussie Kimberly Schlapman
2. In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook the pasta al dente.
3. Meanwhile, melt the remaining 4 tablespoons butter in a large saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the flour and whisk until it starts to foam, about 2 minutes. Slowly add the milk, heavy cream, and garlic powder, whisking constantly. Keep whisking until the sauce thickens, taking care not to let it boil. Add the cheese in small batches, whisking after each until the cheese is melted. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
4. Drain the cooked pasta. Toss the pasta and cheese sauce together and stir to mix well. Serve in bowls and top with toasted breadcrumbs.

Fresh Glazed Apple Cake
Makes 1 Bundt cake
A precious little lady named Mrs. Coffee taught my daddy in school. By the time I was coming up she had slowed her pace and taught only as a substitute teacher. She was a member of our church and was especially known for her deliciously moist apple cake. I liked having a teacher who had known my daddy when he was in school. Daddy has always been curious and interested in learning. He even took up pottery at the age of 68. When I bake this cake, I like to serve it on the beautiful ceramic cake stand my daddy made for me, and when I drizzle the apple glaze over the cake, I think about sweet little Mrs. Coffee and how important it is to keep on learning.

CAKE
1 ¼ cups canola oil
2 cups sugar
3 eggs, at room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
4 cups peeled and diced assorted apples
1 cup finely chopped pecans (optional)

GLAZE
¾ cups sugar
½ cup evaporated milk
8 teaspoons (1 stick) salted butter

1. Make the cake: Preheat the oven to 325°F. Grease and lightly flour a
Bundt pan.
2. Using an electric mixer, cream the oil and sugar in a large bowl. Add the eggs and vanilla and mix well. Sift in the flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon. Mix until well incorporated. The batter will be on the thick side. Add the apples and pecans to the bowl and mix well.
3. Pour the batter into the Bundt pan and bake until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean, about 1 hour and 10 minutes.
4. Meanwhile, make the glaze: Combine the sugar, evaporated milk and butter
in a small saucepan and set over medium heat. Cook, stirring, for 3 minutes.
Keep warm.
5. When the cake is done, leave it in the pan. Poke holes all over the cake with a skewer or toothpick. Pour three-quarters of the glaze on top of the cake while it’s in the pan and still hot. The holes will help soak up the glaze. Let it rest for 30 minutes. Invert the cake onto a cake plate and pour the remaining glaze on top.
(If needed, heat the glaze slightly over low heat to bring it to a nice consistency for pouring.)

Apple Cake Kimberly Schlapman Oh Gussie
To hear more about what Kimberly’s been up to click here.
Buy your own copy of ‘Oh Gussie’ at your local bookstore or click here.
Photographs by Beall + Thomas Photography