Despite an uncertain season for this year's Ole Miss football team, I still look forward to each and every trip to Oxford and tailgating in Grove (the iconic spot on campus where tailgating is elevated to an art form). However, as much as I love the Grove, there's one pre-game tradition I miss from my days as a student: A barbecue sundae from the Rebel Barn.
When I was kicking around Oxford, the Rebel Barn stood out in this small, college town where gas station food marts were (and still are) the center of the universe for satisfying a student's most pressing concerns: beer, chicken on a stick, potato logs, and more beer.
Unfortunately, you can't buy cans or bottles of cold, refrigerated beer in Oxford—and here's where the Rebel Barn played its trump card. This convenience store was drive-through, so their beer was outside...meaning that once the weather cooled down, the Barn's beer was naturally chilled. Talk about your work-arounds, huh?
In addition to "cold" beer in the fall and winter, the Rebel Barn also sold something called a barbecue sundae. The curative powers of this town specialty are legendary (it could slay even the worst hangover in only a few sporkfuls). Those layers of succulent pulled pork, creamy slaw, and tangy baked beans piled high in a large heat-proof cup warmed my soul on crisp, college gamedays.
Carrying on the tradition, my wife and I often entertain with this multi-layered delight. To me, it's quite simply barbecue therapy at its finest.
I've built barbecue sundaes using shredded or chopped pork, brisket, and chicken (I've even seen a vegetarian version made with tofu...and it was actually pretty tasty). The image shows the Sundae served in a Mason jar, but I generally go with a spork and large Styrofoam cup.
If you're pressed for time, the ingredients are easily procured with a quick trip to your favorite barbecue joint. For the more adventurous, however, below are links to recipes for pork, slaw, and beans.
Makes 4 servings
Prep: 10 minutes
Divide 2 cups warm baked beans evenly among 4 Mason jars or large heat-proof cups; top each with 1/2 cup coleslaw, 1/4 pound warm shredded barbecued pork, and 1 to 2 tablespoons sauce. Serve with dill pickle wedge, if desired.
Recipes to make from scratch: