Sooners, Boomers, Mascots, and Sausage Gravy & Biscuits
Oklahoma comes from the Choctaw language phrase okla humma, literally meaning honored people. (The word “humma” is usually applied as honorific denoting courage and bravery.)
Sooners is the name given to settlers who entered the Unassigned Lands in what is now the state of Oklahoma before the official start of the Land Rush of 1889. President Benjamin Harrison officially proclaimed the Unassigned Lands open to settlement, 132 years ago, on April 22, 1889 and officially open to settlement at noon. The name derived from the "sooner clause" of Proclamation 288—Opening to Settlement Certain Lands in the Indian Territory, which stated that anyone who entered and occupied the land prior to the opening time would be denied the right to claim land.
- Boomers (nope, not those Boomers) relates to OK’s participants in the "Boomer Movement”—white settlers who believed the Unassigned Lands were public property and open to anyone for settlement, not just Native American tribes. Those who actually observed the official start of the land run and began the race for free land often found choice sections of land already occupied by Sooners or, in some cases, by Boomers.
- Football mascots. In 1908, the University of Oklahoma adopted "Sooners" as the nickname of its football team. Eventually, Oklahoma became known as "The Sooner State” and the school fight song is titled "Boomer Sooner." The school mascot is a replica of a 19th-century covered wagon, called the "Sooner Schooner." There are a pair of costumed mascots also named "Boomer" and "Sooner".
Sausage Gravy and Biscuits. The perfect dish for brunch after a late night with My Girlfriendships® gang (and a real Oklahoma dish) is Sausage Gravy and Biscuits. Quick, easy, and so perfect for the morning after any fun night.
Ingredients for 12 | Multiply by degree of hunger, divide by number of girlfriends!
- 1 pound breakfast sausage, hot or mild
- 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
- 3 to 4 cups whole milk, more to taste
- 1/2 teaspoon seasoned salt
- 2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper or to taste
- 1/2 cup coarse fresh breadcrumbs
- biscuits, warmed for serving
Tear small pieces of sausage, and add them in a single layer to a large heavy skillet.
Brown the sausage over medium-high heat until no longer pink.
Reduce the heat to medium-low.
Sprinkle on half the flour and stir so the sausage soaks it all up. Little by little add the rest until all absorbed.
Stir and cook, another minute or so.
Add the milk, stirring constantly.
Cook the gravy, stirring frequently, until thickened (may take 10 to 12 minutes).
Add the seasoning. Add more milk if needed.
Spoon the sausage gravy over warm biscuits and serve immediately!
Looking for a place to gather with girlfriends for dinner or a night out? Here are a couple of great options when planning your next girlfriend gathering. If you’re in Stillwater, I recommend:
- The Hideaway | The Hideaway was founded in 1957, and is one of the first pizza restaurants in the state. It was originally called the Campus Hideaway, and was located on 3rd Street, just off the Oklahoma State University campus. When Richard and Marti Dermer had their first pizza there, he made the comment, "Pizza is going to be more popular than hamburgers.”
Richard got a job as a delivery driver his freshman year at OSU, and three years later, at age 20, he and Marti bought it so they could pay for college. They changed the name to The Hideaway and set out to prove his statement while also creating a Stillwater tradition. They have continued to work hard to grow their business while employing OSU students to help them get through school.
Pizza may not be more popular than hamburgers, but for the college crowd, it’s right up there. For a My Girlfriendships gathering, The Hideaway Super Special is perfect. Each slice comes with two different toppings. Toppings include various meats, veggies, cheeses, sauces and more—something for everyone! Pizza night calls for soda, beer, or a refreshing lemonade—The Hideaway has them all.
Girls weekend-ing in Tulsa?
- Rib Crib | Speaking of football, when visiting Tulsa, a must-visit restaurant is the Rib Crib. CEO Michael Garrett Mills is a former American football tight end who played college football at the University of Tulsa and was drafted by the New England Patriots in the fourth round of the 2006 NFL Draft. CEO Mills also played for the Minnesota Vikings, Philadelphia Eagles, and Cincinnati Bengals. Following his career in professional football, he ventured into Wall Street working for Goldman Sachs where he realized that finance wasn’t the long-term career he was looking for. That’s when fate stepped in: Bret Chandler, founder of the Rib Crib, asked him if he wanted to come back home. If so, there was a spot for him at Rib Crib. He joined as vice president of strategy, and is now the CEO.
The menu is replete with delicious barbecue but for our girlfriends outing, we will go with the Pitmaster’s Choice: The Motherlode. Sliced smoked chicken breast, chopped brisket, pulled pork, and sliced hot links is the perfect shareable for a fun evening dinner with the girls.