What Is The Authentic South?
What constitutes the authentic south? What does it mean to be "southern"? That is a difficult question for me to answer as I was born and raised in New York and Atlanta is my adopted city.
But judging from my conversation with Chef Linton Hopkins last year, the answer is also hard for native southerners to answer.
Tanner Latham tackles the subject in his podcast aptly named Authentic South that explores the culture, craft and characters in the southern U.S.
Listen to GPB Radio, Saturday, Oct 11 at 1 p.m. as he poses the question to chef Vivian Howard at Chef and the Farmer, a restaurant in the tiny Eastern North Carolina town of Kinston. Howard and her husband Ben Knight star on their Peabody Award-winning PBS show A Chef’s Life.
On the definition of southern food, Howard has a difficult time finding the right words. But she has found a meaning she is comfortable with. She notes she cooks the dishes and sauces she grew up on in her part of North Carolina, like blueberry vinagrette. And that is the authentic south for her.
If you can’t catch the episode tomorrow, listen to the podcast version of it below.
How would you define authentic southern cuisine and culture? Let me know in the comments section below.