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Even if you've lived in Louisiana your entire life, you may have questions when it comes to these uniquely southern units of measurement.

If you've ever been given an old family recipe, then you know a lot of things in cooking come down to judgment calls, not actual measurements. A lot of people measure things by feel. So, if you've ever been told to add a pinch of salt, you can safely assume it's the amount of salt that you can 'pinch' between your thumb and index finger. If you need a technical measurement, that's roughly 1/16 of a teaspoon... and that's an actual teaspoon, not the spoons you set your dinner table with.


What about if you're told to add a dab of something? No, it's not a dance move, it's another southern unit of measurement and I'll be honest, I wasn't able to find an actual measurement for a 'dab' online, but I can tell you that a 'tad' is equal to about a 1/4 teaspoon. A dash is about 1/8 of a teaspoon, a smidgen or a shake works out to 1/32 of a teaspoon, and a drop or nip is 1/64 of a teaspoon.

Clearly, when it comes to small-batch baking or cooking, measuring is more important, but most southern mommas teach their babies to measure by feel. You know when to stop adding water, flour, or whatever, judging by the dish's texture or consistency.

Diamond Dogs
Diamond Dogs

How about measurements when it comes to distance or driving? There's a big difference between something being 'over yonder' which really isn't that far, maybe a half mile or so, and something being 'down the road a piece.' Heck, they could be talking about Dallas!

What's your favorite southern unit of measurement? Is it a dollop, or maybe even a hair or a mess? I'd love to hear from you! Shoot me an email at erin.bristol@townsquaremedia.com or send me a chat message using our free app.

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