My brother Jimmy’s recording of “The Bama Breeze” was his homage to coastal dives, particularly the famous Flora-Bama on the beach at the Alabama – Florida State line. He sent me a little love both when he changed the lyrics to call the bar owner “LuLu” and when he asked me if I wanted to play the bar owner in the video. I mused for just a second, thinking…hmmm… a woman who owns a bar, drinking a beer, jumps up on the stage and sings with the band. It wasn’t much of a stretch! I had crazy fun shooting the video but I’m glad I have my day job! Now I enjoy this drink at my own “Bama Breeze” bar on the beach at LuLu’s.


Makes 1 Drink

2 ounces Absolut® Citron vodka
1 ounce Coconut rum
Juice of ½ fresh lime
½ ounce simple syrup
2-3 ounces cranberry juice

Fill tall glass with crushed ice
Add vodka and rum
Squeeze lime juice into glass
Fill with cranberry juice
Add simple syrup to desired sweetness
Garnish with fresh lime slice

My dear friend, Suzanne Cleveland, for years arrived at every pier-party, holiday get-together, or general shin-dig with her trademark lemon squares. The children would wait impatiently for her to arrive with a tray of tasty treats, powdered sugar all over their faces and fingers within minutes. This dessert is inspired by her recipe, with a tart little key lime twist.


Makes 10-12 Squares

For Crust:
¼ cup blanched almond slivers
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
2 cups all purpose flour
1 tablespoon powdered or confectioner’s sugar
¼ teaspoon almond extract

For Filling:
5 eggs
2 cups white sugar
¾ cup key lime juice
¼ cup powdered or confectioner’s sugar
Pinch of salt
½ teaspoon orange zest

Preheat oven to 350˚
Using a mini-food processor, chop almonds into a coarse meal.
In a large mixing bowl or food processor, combine almonds, butter, flour, 1 tablespoon confectioner’s sugar and almond extract.
Blend into a thick pastry and pat into the bottom of a well greased 8x12“ baking dish.
Bake crust for 15 minutes and remove from oven. Reduce oven temperature to 325˚.
Gently beat eggs. Add granulated sugar, salt, key lime juice and orange zest.
Mix thoroughly.
Pour key lime filling over partially baked crust and return to the oven.
Bake 20 – 30 minutes or until key lime filling “sets”.
Remove from oven and cool.
Sift remaining confectioner’s sugar on the top and cut into squares.

Lucy Buffett celebrates her art of cooking flavored with freedom, relaxation, and seaside decadence much like her brother Jimmy, who wrote the forward to this book, does with his music. This previously self-published book (formerly titled Crazy Sista Cooking) has sold over 70,000 copies.

LuLu’s Kitchen – A Taste of the Gulf Coast Good Life, features a new introduction by Lucy along with updated photographs of some of the books classic recipes and dinner party moments. Packed with more than 120 signature recipes from, LuLu’s, her famous Gulf Coast restaurant, this book is the next best thing to being there. Tucked inside are humorous stories with plenty of wit and wisdom from Lucy’s own kitchen. The book features party menus, Buffett family favorites, and lots of “telling it like it is.” Renowned novelist Tom McGuane also contributes an engaging essay that blends smoothly with the spicy dishes and distinctive drinks.

Recipes include soul-satisfying Southern delights like West Indies Salad, Perfect Fried Shrimp, Blackened Grouper Sandwich, Garlic Cheese Grits, Fried Green Tomatoes, and Heavenly Fried Crab Claws. And there’s a whole chapter on 25 specialty drinks, including “Bama Breeze” and “LuLu’s Painkiller.”

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