Rural Missouri - May 2011 - (Page 18)

O U T by Jason Jenkins O F T H E W A Y E A T S hen it comes to “out of the way” eats, few are more remote than the Traveler’s Table. Since 2008, this eatery just up the road from Dillard Mill State Historic Site in southern Crawford County has been serving classic American favorites and a mix of international dishes. Despite the old adage, owners Greg Kerlin and Chris Johansson prove that location isn’t everything — when you have delicious food. They open for their 2011 season on May 27. A Missouri native, Greg studied at the California Culinary Academy in San Francisco. While in the Bay Area, he met Chris and they married. She had never been to Missouri, and her vision of the state was a bit stereotyped. “I always thought it was kind of like a big cornfield out in the Midwest,” she jokes. To set Chris Join editor Jason Jenkins straight, Greg on his visit to the Traveler’s organized a MisTable in the online edition at souri vacation in 2001. After visiting Johnson’s Shut-Ins, they stopped along Highway 49 to take a picture of the bluffs above Huzzah Creek. When they returned to their rental car, it wouldn’t start. They wandered down to Dillard where they found help. A year later, when the couple returned to complete their road trip, they noticed the property next to the mill was for sale. On a whim, Chris wrote down the number. When their rental car broke down on the Huzzah Creek bridge, Greg Kerlin and Chris Johansson couldn’t have “At the time, we had a very crazy landlord, dreamed their misfortune that day would eventually lead to the opening of the Traveler’s Table in 2008. and one day when he was being particularly potatoes or another creation. seed, mustard and oil dressing. Greg keeps the crazy, I picked up the phone and called about the Beyond these dishes, the rest of the menu is in secret of the potato salad’s deliciousness to himproperty. We actually could kind of afford it, so constant flux. Chris and Greg post the menu for self — that is, unless you’re willing to peel a paswe took the leap,” she says. Eventually, Chris and the upcoming weekend to their website by Thurssel of potatoes for him. Greg moved to Dillard for good and remodeled day, or you can call to find out what’s for dinner. On Fridays and Saturdays when the dinner the building that now houses the Traveler’s Table. Some of the lunch options that rotate through hour arrives at 5 p.m., you’ll find a dish referred “I love to do things that are fresh and unique the menu include Greg’s “Dagwood” sandwich — to as “Meat and Potatoes.” It’s an 8-ounce filet — and tasty. That’s No. 1,” says Greg. “We experiwith salami, ham, smoked turkey, Swiss cheese, mignon with a side of the potatoes of the day, ment with flavors from all over the world.” pepper jack cheese, lettuce and tomato — and which could be roasted potatoes, garlic mashed From Italian to Mexican to Chinese, you the Hawaiian turkey burger, served with never know what choices the Crawford green onions, bell peppers, pineapple, Electric Cooperative members will offer. fresh ginger and a teriyaki glaze. The menu changes with the ingredients The Traveler’s Table For dinner, you might try the chicken available and the whimsy of the chef. mole poblano, which combines grilled “There’s not really a science to it,” Specialties: Pulled pork sandchicken breasts and a sauce made of says Chris. “It’s sort of what’s fresh, what wich, half-pound burger, “Meat flavorful chiles with a hint of chocolate we can get, what we feel like doing.” and Potatoes,” rainbow slaw, St. • and cinnamon. Another favorite is the There are a few staples on the menu, Louis-style gooey butter cake. Dillard 16-ounce ribeye, which Greg hand cuts however, including a half-pound hamand grills to order. burger and a pulled pork sandwich, each Price: Lunch from $7 to $10; Chris bakes all the desserts. Try the with Greg’s unique twist. dinner from $15 to $25. Cash, hummingbird cake — a three-layer spice For the burger, he combines fresh cake with banana, pineapple, pecans and chuck and ground beef to create the perchecks, Mastercard and Visa accepted. a cream cheese frosting — or the classic fect patty, which is grilled to order after St. Louis-style gooey butter cake, which is receiving a dash of his secret marinade. Details: Open Friday through Sunday, 11 a.m. to 8 served on Sundays. The pulled pork begins as a whole p.m., from late spring through late fall. This year’s Although they bring in some help on pork butt, which Greg marinates with opening day is May 27. No smoking. Seats 30. For Friday and Saturday evenings, most days a rub of his creation. Then, it’s into the parties of six or more, please call ahead. Catering and it’s just Chris and Greg doing all the work. charcoal smoker for a few hours, folcooking classes also offered. As a result, a meal at the Traveler’s Table lowed by up to eight hours in a slow is a chance to slow down, take a moment cooker in a bath of smoky pork stock. Directions: Located next to Dillard Mill State Historic and enjoy the overall experience. The result is pulled pork that is both Site. From the intersection of Highways 19 and 49 in “The joke with the locals is you don’t juicy and tender. Cherryville, follow the signs to the mill, about 12 miles. come if you’re in a hurry,” says Chris. You won’t find fries on the menu, “Because everything is cooked fresh, it but regulars rave about the rainbow slaw Contact: 573-244-5300 or does take a little longer, but we think it’s and the potato salad. The slaw combines worth it by the time it gets to your table.” carrots, two types of cabbage and a dill W The Traveler’s Table Classic American dishes served with international flair 18 WWW.RURALMISSOURI.COOP http://WWW.RURALMISSOURI.COOP

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Rural Missouri - May 2011

Rural Missouri - May 2011
Table of Contents
Jim Peters’ Passion
Help & Hope
Twist of Fate
Mail Bag
Shoot Like a Pro
Out of the Way Eats
Aircraft From Another Era
Hearth and Home
News Briefs
The Pared-Down House
Around Missouri

Rural Missouri - May 2011