Italian Cooking | Southern Roots

Italian Cooking | Southern Roots

Hog and Hominy. Once a nickname referencing the abundance of pork and corn products in the state of Tennessee, Hog and Hominy now refers to a dapper Memphis eat spot that can boast the same bounty. Andy Ticer and Michael Hudman – James Beard Foundation Award semi-finalists and the same guys behind the beloved Andrew Michael Italian Kitchen – established this latest creation in 2011.

Ticer and Hudman have been best friends since sixth grade. They both come from a rich Italian background but were born and raised in the South – a unique combination that ensured both an appreciation for good food and a diverse appetite. “We grew up in families centered about the table and cooking,” the boys tell us. Their grandmothers, who were both born in Italy, were especially influential  – teaching them the essentials of Italian cooking.

They furthered their expertise in Europe – studying at the Italian Culinary Institute in Calabria. “Italy was where our cooking changed,” Hudman tells us. “It was there we really learned how to cook.”

Southern bred and Italian fed has made for a delicious combination and these talented guys have fused the best of both into successful palettes for their restaurants.

Along with integrating both Italian and Southern aspects to their cooking, they also strive to cook fresh and local. It was in Italy that they developed this philosophy – “to respect the animal and cook seasonally with local ingredients.”

“We believe in supporting the local community, and serving the best, freshest ingredients possible. Buying local enables us to do both at once,” Ticer explains.

Some of H&H’s most popular dishes include the Red Eye pizza, the beef and cheddar dog and the peanut butter pie. They’ve also started serving ramen for late nights Thursday through Saturday and “it’s going REALLY well,” they tell us.

No strangers to late nights, themselves, some of the pair’s more interesting dishes were concocted in the wee hours of the morning. The Red Eye, for example, is a pizza that features pork belly, egg, fontina, celery leaf and sugo or cooked sauce. Michael recalls, “We’d had a few beers and it was 4 in the morning and we were discussing wanting to have one cooked sauce and one raw sauce on the menu. We started talking about early mornings and the “bloody beer” (which is a bloody Mary with an egg). We had pork belly on hand so we tried it all out. It’s our answer to Memphis’ BBQ Pizza.”

With a menu ranging from pork tails to pecorino, Hog and Hominy offers up an eclectic portfolio of fresh fare.

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