Cornbread Nation
April 28, 2008 6:07 PM   Subscribe

The Southern Foodways Alliance is one weighed-down church-supper table, full of oral history/blog projects like The Tamale Trail, the Boudin Trail, interviews and recipes from the Bartenders of New Orleans, photo essay/interviews from Birmingham's Greek-Americans, a mess o'homemade films, and a passel of event and BBQ-shack photos on Flickr, all smothered in the tangy-sweet academic goodness of the Center for the Study of Southern Culture at Ole Miss. These folks get my vote for most flavorful, funkiest food-loving folklorists in the lower forty-eight.

Tamales previously mentioned here, and Prince's Hot Chicken here, but the whole site is worth a bookmark and a long evening on the porch.
posted by Miko (15 comments total) 40 users marked this as a favorite
MikoFilter: one weighed-down church-supper table full of oral history/blog MAGIC.
posted by scrump at 6:12 PM on April 28, 2008

This is awesome, thanks. I try not to read food posts in the first half of the week based on a very poorly thought out non-gluttony/austerity program, but we'll see how long I last.
posted by Divine_Wino at 6:27 PM on April 28, 2008

Let me tell you I love those delta tamales. This is my kind of post right here.
posted by nola at 6:27 PM on April 28, 2008

I'm a long time fan of the SFA and the Southern Culture Center. Even spent some time visiting there during an Elvis/Faulkner pilgrimage. This post is more lovely than a southern gothic cliche.
posted by dawson at 6:39 PM on April 28, 2008 [1 favorite]

That does it. It's time to make dinner.
posted by loquacious at 6:55 PM on April 28, 2008

I kind of skipped over this at first, but this is really a fun post.
posted by caddis at 7:22 PM on April 28, 2008

I approve of this mightily. Although I will have to content myself with Soul Vegetarian. And try to pretend that these delicious turnip greens weren't cooked with a ham hock.
posted by xthlc at 7:51 PM on April 28, 2008

Separate from but partnered with the SFA is the Southern Food and Beverage Museum, which will open at the Riverwalk in New Orleans in June, and as of July will be the new permanent home of The Museum of the American Cocktail.
posted by chuq at 11:47 PM on April 28, 2008 [1 favorite]

You post great stuff Miko, truly -- thanks!
posted by fourcheesemac at 3:03 AM on April 29, 2008

posted by languagehat at 6:02 AM on April 29, 2008

Wow. I saw this last night when I was too sleepy to enjoy all the goodness of these links. Thanks so much for posting this!
posted by pointystick at 7:11 AM on April 29, 2008

D'oh! I had this on my "to post" list, but you beat me to it. One of their oral historians presented a session in the Slow Food track at the Georgia Organics conference this year. She talked about her equipment, the interviewing techniques, and how she was able to find people to interview (driving around looking for hand-lettered signs plays a prominent part).

It was a great presentation, and I was able to snag one of their DVDs ("Whole Hog"), which I haven't found time to watch yet.
posted by ewagoner at 7:17 AM on April 29, 2008

One side of my family is from Vicksburg and we all agree that Solly's are the best we've ever had. I have three bags in my freezer right now. They're so good, I don't want to eat them (b/c then I'll run out).
posted by jdfan at 7:38 AM on April 29, 2008

Look on our shrimp and grits, ye yankees, and despair!
posted by gordie at 7:38 AM on April 29, 2008

My uncle, who died at age 98 in 1996, ran Bon Ton Hatters in downtown Birmingham. The business was started by his father, Demetrios Callisperis, in 1908. It's still in business, run by my cousin Jimmy. His family lived up the street from us, and on Sunday afternoon we'd walk up to their house and eat spanikopitas and roast lamb (in the spring; often venison in the fall) and collard greens and saghanaki and fried green tomatoes.

The blending of southern ingredients and cooking techniques with traditional Greek cuisine has created a unique food culture in Birmingham that we locals are justifiably proud of.

It's also led to sometimes head-scratchingly weird food -- the special sauce on Pete's Hot Dogs (what is it? It's not chili, but it's more than just beef...what IS it?), the cole slaw at John's (which is nothing more than half a head of green cabbage, shredded thin, piled high, and doused with a gloopy orange catsup-based sweet dressing that seems strange but is in fact delicious), even the funky brown sauce that drips from every Milo's hamburger exists at the intersection of two great culinary traditions -- Greek cooking and Southern cooking.

I think I'll order take-out from the Fish Market for dinner tonight.... grilled triggerfish Greek style with a side of slaw and fried nom nom...
posted by BitterOldPunk at 3:36 PM on April 29, 2008 [1 favorite]

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