Tag Archives: appalachian food

Of Love, Beans and Pie Luck in Appalachia

Men and women moved along the table side-by-side, some introducing themselves to each other for the first time, and some reconnecting while filling their plates and sharing stories of their Appalachian roots. This was exactly the purpose of the summit. As Ronni Lundy repeated throughout the day, “We’re here to break bread and talk about what are we doing, not where are we?” The gathering wasn’t pretending to provide answers. It was listening to what Appalachia has to say for itself about its people, food, and place without those who bend its stories into stereotypical narratives stemming from a fear of poverty and the unknown.

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New Year countdown

Ringing out the old, ringing in the new. Everyone’s doing it tomorrow night. One New Year tradition in Appalachia is the New Year baby. The custom of using a baby to signify the New Year originated in ancient Greece, the baby symbolizing in this case not birth, but re-birth. The Germans added the twist of […]

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Those men would eat like hungry men do eat, you know

“Well, we used to go to the neighbors and play cards, various different kind of games, and we popped corn. No pizzas, but we popped corn and made popcorn balls. And we made those with sorghum molasses. We didn’t waste any sugar. And we made our own sorghum molasses. I never cared all that much […]

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The turkey was dressed out the day before

“In my younger days, during the 1920s, work was very good, and I would see men at the commissary company store, flipping gold and silver coins in the air and catching them as they fell. Shopping at the company store was an event. We all had our favorite clerk and would stand in line to […]

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Cornbread or beaten biscuits? Breaking the food code

This 2005 interview with Dr. Elizabeth Engelhardt of the University of Texas/Austin ran in that school’s Office of Public Affairs newsletter. Full article here. When you sit down to your Thanksgiving meal this week, will the dressing on your plate be made with cornbread or wheat bread? Will it have oysters or sausage or chestnuts? […]

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