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Your Mama’s has supper for you to take home

By Linda Haymes

This article was published April 11, 2013 at 2:38 a.m.

Meatloaf, yeast rolls, pie and salads are among the dinner-to-go items at Your Mama’s Good Food.

Your Mama’s is bringing it on home.

The longtime popular blue-plate Southern home style restaurant has been serving hot lunches to diners in downtown Little Rock since 1990. And now the restaurant is offering customers dinner - not a sit-down one in the the restaurant, but on a to-go basis.

A home-cooked meal in the comfort of your home? Which you didn’t have to cook? The folks at Your Mama’s Good Food, now in the Pyramid Building at Center and Third streets, may have hit a home run with this one.

Owners Teresa and Steve Maxwell, formerly of Louisiana, joined with Teresa’s brother, John Gray, and bought the restaurant from founders Fleming and Barbara Stockton about a year ago. They have thoughtfully retained in its new location its retro heritage with black and white tiled floors, red vinyl and chrome chairs and vintage collectible decor, and they also prominently display the neon sign that Fleming Stockton built front and center inside the restaurant.

But the new owners are also forward-thinking, with a presence on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Foursquare. And they’ve made a move toward online ordering and adding locally sourced ingredients to the menu.

Downtown workers looking for a hot meal in a hurry to take home may call the restaurant before 3 p.m. and place an order to be picked up anytime between 4 and 6.

Dinner packs to serve either two ($16.95) or four ($30) include a choice of an entree, one side and rolls or cornbread.

Entree options are the restaurant’s signature dish, meatloaf with spicy creole sauce; chicken stew (white meat chicken and served over steamed white rice); chicken spaghetti (white-meat chicken and traditional spaghetti noodles, though you can substitute other types of pasta); baked ziti; chicken pot pie; spaghetti and meatballs; chicken pesto pasta; and chicken fried steak or chicken fried chicken with a choice of cream or brown gravy.

Side dishes are mashed potatoes, roasted new potatoes, macaroni and cheese, black eyed peas, green beans, sauteed cabbage and carrots.

Add salads and desserts for an additional charge.

The garden or Caesar salads come in individual portions ($2.75) or big enough to serve four ($6). Desserts, sold only in individual portions, are pecan pie, Key lime pie, banana pudding and bread pudding ($2.15).

Oh, and in addition to dining in at lunch and take-out dinner meals, the restaurant also offers catering.

The order I called in at 1:45 on a recent Thursday afternoon - Caesar salad, meatloaf, mashed potatoes and rolls for four and two desserts - was taken smoothly and swiftly and I chose 4:30 as my pick-up time. I worried on arrival about finding an available metered parking space, but this late in the day, several were open. The entree and sides all came in metal pie tins with plastic lids; the rolls were wrapped in foil and two slices of pie were each packed in clear plastic containers. The bill came to $40.

When I got home 20 minutes later, the food was still warm and easy to unpack and distribute. Everything tasted the same as it does in the restaurant, with the exception of the creole sauce atop the meatloaf, which seemed a little more dry that when it’s served at lunch. A better option might be to pack the sauce in a separate container to be added later.

The Key lime pie was thick and creamy, but the piece was a little on the smallish side. The pecan pie, however, was a generous portion and loaded with pecans.

Those looking for a night off from cooking will be hard-pressed to find higher-quality take-home fare.Your Mama’s Good Food

Address: 215 Center St., Little Rock

Hours: 11 a.m. to 2 -p.m., Monday through Friday; 4 to 6 p.m. for dinner take-out on orders placed before 3 p.m.

Cuisine: American/home style/Southern

Credit cards: All major

Alcoholic beverages: No

Wheelchair accessible: Yes

Carryout: Yes

(501) 372-1811

yourmamasgoodfood.com

Weekend, Pages 38 on 04/11/2013

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