Collins Dream Kitchen: The dream is real!
The “soul spaghetti” at Collins Dream Kitchen (1439 Terry Rd, Jackson) is on John T. Edge’s list of 100 Southern foods to try before you die, and I have been hearing good things about the restaurant since before I moved to Jackson. So it’s embarrassing that it took me this long to get there, but I’m glad I finally did.
The restaurant doesn’t look like much on the outside (true of so many of the best places), but inside it is bright and open. You order from a cafeteria line and take your tray into the dining room, where a server brings you water, iced tea, or lemonade.
Counting on my friend to let me try his soul spaghetti, I decided I was more in the mood for red beans and rice. The sausage was delicious, and had a unique texture that was almost spongy—that may sound unpleasant, but I liked it a lot. The skin was snappy and the dish was nice and smoky, with a little bit of spice. Although the beans didn’t come in a sauce, they were far from dry. I also really enjoyed the sides: the greens were mellow and not greasy, and the macaroni had a pleasantly crispy top. Despite the cafeteria-style set-up, neither suffered from tasting like it had been sitting out for hours.
My friend got the spaghetti and I had a few bites. I loved the fat, soft pasta and the savoriness of the sauce, but I actually preferred the red beans and rice. Overall, the restaurant was near the top of my list of good soul food in Jackson (a long list, obviously). I think as long as you eat something at Collins Dream Kitchen before you die, you’re probably set.
CDK is open 11-6:30 weekdays, 11-5:30 Saturdays and 11-5 Sundays.