Run, Forrest! Run!

Run, Forrest! Run!

It’s hard to believe that twenty years have passed since the award-winning Forrest Gump was filmed here in our little coastal town of Beaufort, South Carolina. We’re celebrating! To commemorate this great film I’ve channeled my inner Forrest Gump and created some yummy Gump-inspired recipes. (Photography by Susan DeLoach)

 Dr. Pepper Presidential Pork

Dr. Pepper Presidential Pork
The best thing about visiting the President is the food! Now, since it was all free, and I wasn’t hungry but thirsty, I must’ve drank me fifteen Dr. Peppers.” – Forrest Gump

1 large sweet onion
1 Boston butt (pork shoulder) – 5 to 7 pounds
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 (11-ounce) can chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
2 (12-ounce) cans Dr. Pepper
2 tablespoons light brown sugar
Peel and cut the onion in to wedges. Lay the wedges in the bottom of a large crock pot. Generously salt and pepper the pork, then set it on top of the onions in the crock pot. Pour the can of chipotle peppers and adobo sauce over the pork. Pour in both cans of Dr. Pepper and stir in the brown sugar. Place the lid on the crock pot and cook for 7 to 8 hours on high heat, turning the pork two or three times during the cooking process. Check the meat after after 7 hours; it should be falling off the bone. If it’s not completely falling apart, cook it for an additional hour. Remove the meat from the crock pot and place on a large cutting board. Use two forks to shred the meat, discarding the bone and pieces of fat. Strain as much of the fat off the top of the cooking liquid as you can and discard it. Return the shredded meat to the cooking liquid and keep warm until ready to serve. Serve warm on flour tortillas. Top with shredded lettuce, diced tomatoes, grated cheese, diced tomatoes, guacamole and fresh cilantro. Freezes beautifully. Serves 12 to 15.

Peas and Carrots Risotto with Shrimp

Peas and Carrots Risotto with Shrimp
Me and Jenny goes together like peas and carrots.” – Forrest Gump

4 cups vegetable broth
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 shallot, chopped
1 cup chopped carrots
1 cup arborio rice
½ cup dry white wine
1 cup frozen peas, thawed
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
2 pounds cooked shrimp (sauteed, boiled, steamed or fried)
Grated parmesan cheese
Zest of one lemon
¼ cup chopped Italian parsley
Pour broth into a saucepan and warm over low heat. Heat olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the shallot and saute until translucent. Stir in the carrots and rice and cook for 1 minute using a wooden spoon. Add the wine and continue to stir until the liquid has cooked off. Add 1 cup of the broth and continue to stir until it has been absorbed by the rice. Continue adding broth, one cup at a time, and stirring until it has been absorbed. Stir in the peas. The risotto should be thick and creamy. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Pour risotto into a serving bowl. Top with cooked shrimp, grated parmesan cheese, lemon zest and chopped Italians parsley. Serve hot. Serves 4.

Shrimp and Italian Sausage Pizza

Shrimp and Italian Sausage Pizza
My given name is Benjamin Buford Blue, but people call me Bubba. Just like one of them ol’ redneck boys. Can you believe that?” – Bubba

1 packaged pizza crust
1 cup prepared pizza sauce
1 medium sweet onion, thinly sliced

½ pound sweet Italian sausage; cooked, drained and crumbled
½ pound medium shrimp; cooked, peeled and deveined
Dried oregano
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
Extra pizza sauce, for dipping
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place pizza crust on a prepared pizza pan. Spread crust evenly with pizza sauce. Top with sliced onion, Italian sausage and shrimp. Season, to taste, with dried oregano. Cover evenly with shredded cheese. Bake for 20 to 30 minutes, until cheese is melted and lightly browned. Serve hot with extra pizza sauce on the side for dipping. Serves 4.

Shrimp Fondue with Ginger Dipping Sauce

Shrimp Fondue with Ginger Dipping Sauce
So Bubba was from Bayou la Batrie, Alabama, and his mama cooked shrimp. And her mama before her cooked shrimp, and her mama before her mama cooked shrimp, too. Bubba’s family knew everything there was to know about the shrimpin’ business.” – Forrest Gump

For the dipping sauce:
2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger

1 clove garlic, minced
½ cup low-sodium soy sauce
Mix all ingredients and set aside for at least one hour before serving.
For the shrimp:
2 pounds medium shrimp, peeled and deveined

¼ cup fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon soy sauce
½ teaspoon grated fresh ginger
1 clove garlic, minced
Vegetable oil for cooking
Place shrimp in a glass bowl. Mix together lemon juice, soy sauce, ginger and garlic. Pour mixture over shrimp and toss to ensure that each piece is thoroughly coated. Refrigerate for two hours. Heat the oil in a fondue pot and cook the shrimp until pink and cooked through. Serve with dipping sauce. Serve 6.

Cajun Shrimp

Cajun Shrimp
Bubba was my best good friend. And even I know that ain’t something you can find just around the corner. Bubba was going to be a shrimping boat captain, but instead, he died right there by that river in Vietnam.” – Forrest Gump

1 teaspoon paprika
¾ teaspoon dried thyme
¾ teaspoon dried oregano
¼ teaspoon garlic powder
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
1½ pounds shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
Combine first 7 ingredients in a medium bowl; stir to mix. Add shrimp and toss to coat. Heat oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Cook and stir shrimp in hot oil until they are pink and cooked through, about 4 minutes. Serves 4.

Life is Like a Box of Chocolates Cake

Life is Like a Box of Chocolates Cake
My momma always said, ‘Life was like a box of chocolates. You never know what you’re gonna get.’” – Forrest Gump

For the cake:
1 (15.25-ounce) chocolate cake mix

1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
1 cup buttermilk
1/3 cup vegetable oil
3 large eggs
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease two 9-inch cake pans with vegetable shortening , then dust with flour. Shake out the excess flour. Set the pans aside. Place the cake mix, cocoa powder, buttermilk, vegetable oil, eggs and vanilla extract in a large mixing bowl. Blend with an electric mixer until the batter is well blended, about 3 minutes. Divide the batter between the prepared pans. Place the pans in the over side by side. Bake the cakes until a toothpick inserted in the center of each layer comes out clean, 25 to 30 minutes. Remove the pans from the oven and cool on racks for 5 minutes. Invert each cake onto a rack and allow to cool completely. Meanwhile, prepare the frosting.
For the frosting:
1 stick butter, at room temperature

2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
3 cups confectioner’s sugar
1/3 cup whole milk, plus additional if needed
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 (16-ounce) box assorted chocolate candies
Place the butter and cocoa powder in a large mixing bowl. Blend with and electric mixer on low speed until the mixture is soft and well combines. Add the confectioner’s sugar, 1/3 cup milk and vanilla extract to the mixing bowl and beat with the mixer on low speed until the frosting is fluffy. Add more milk if the frosting is to thick. Place one cake layer, right side up, on a serving platter. Spread with the frosting. Place the second layer, right side up, on top of the first layer. Frost the top and sides of the cake, using smooth strokes. Decorate cake with chocolate candies. Store cake, covered, at room temperature for up to 3 days or refrigerated for up to 1 week. Serves 8 to 10.

Catering by Debbi Covington

The writer owns Catering by Debbi Covington and is the author of two cookbooks, Gold Medal Winner of the Benjamin Franklin Award, Celebrate Everything! and Dining Under the Carolina Moon. Debbi’s website address is She may be reached at 525-0350 or by email at