If Appalachian cuisine could speak, I think it’d sound like my grandmother: loving but no-nonsense, pleased but bemused by your enthusiasm over the meal she’s just made from little more than dried beans and a tin of flour.
Join the Southern Foodways Alliance on a romp through our home state of Mississippi (and the birthplace of the OA). We'll take you from the Delta to the state capital to the Gulf Coast. While you're here, enjoy the foods that draw hungry travelers from far and wide, as well as the community treasures that fly under the radar.
As this request wells up from within me, it feels at once ancestral and strange. I don’t really eat fried chicken, certainly not store- or restaurant-bought fried chicken. I live in California, for heaven’s sake. I live in Berkeley. But frying a chicken seems like an ancestral art, like knowing how to make a pie crust or a green tomato chutney, both of which I pride myself on knowing how to do. Here in my great-aunt’s house, here in Greensboro, I want to heed my grandmother’s injunction.
Because I come from a small family spread around the country, I thought “meeting the family” meant there would be a polite, quiet dinner with Nicole’s parents. Instead, there was a crush of noise and people when we walked into the barroom at the front of Bruning’s. There was talking and laughter, clinking of beer steins and highball glasses, yelling of orders to bartenders, shouting of names by the hostess when a table was ready, bumping of shoulders and swishing of hips to move through the waiting crowd.