Soul Food Sunday at Mother’s Basket in DeSoto

When Jackie Johnson was just 12 years old, her mother, Jackie Mitchell, started teaching her how to cook all different types of soul food. Mitchell was taught by “Mother” Vernie Brown, who is the namesake of Mother’s Basket, a restaurant in DeSoto. Johnson passed these dishes onto her husband, son and daughter, who run the restaurant with her, making this a true generational establishment.

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Soul Food Sunday at Mother’s Basket starts at noon and is sometimes sold out by 2 p.m.

Molly Wolchansky

The best day to try Mother’s Basket is Soul Food Sunday, when people come from all around North Texas to get the daily special. The restaurant is about 25 minutes from downtown Dallas, but that doesn’t stop patrons from making the weekly drive.

There isn’t a set menu on Sundays, and that’s because Johnson “likes to cook from the heart.” The wait isn’t ever too bad, but they sometimes sell out as early as 2 p.m., so be sure to arrive early.

Soul Food Sunday serves staples like baked pork chops, oxtail, neck bones, fried fish, chicken leg quarters and a variety of classic sides like macaroni and cheese, green beans, black-eyed peas, cornbread dressing, yams and cabbage.

We tried the tender baked chicken that falls right off the bone and is blanketed with crispy, lightly peppered skin. A scoop each of dressing, macaroni and cheese and green beans with a side of cornbread were all perfect.

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A catfish basket with sweet potatoes and cabbage.

Molly Wolchansky

We also tried the fried catfish, which is coated with thin and crunchy breading. Combined with the sautéed, buttery cabbage and thick cornbread, it makes for a fond tastebud trip back in time. The Sunday specials start at $14, and the servings are plentiful, so be sure to arrive hungry.

Mother’s Basket is open only Thursday through Sunday. The regular menu is available when it’s not Soul Food Sunday, and it boasts dishes like Smokey Denmark Hot Links, which come with fries, bread, pickles and peppers and starts at $6.

There are other dishes to choose from like the pork chop basket, which comes with the same sides and starts at $9. If you’re not a fan of pork, try the chicken wing basket and the chicken tender basket that starts at $6, and be sure not to pass on the sugar-filled peach mango tea.

The restaurant is takeout only. While waiting for your to-go order, be sure to check out the family photos displayed on each wall. Everything is served in styrofoam containers and the food is packed so that it stays warm for a while.

Mother’s Basket, 208 North Hampton Road, Suite C, DeSoto. 11 a.m. – 8 p.m. Thursday – Saturday and Sunday 12 p.m. to sell out – closed Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday.

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