11 February, 2019

Appalachian Roots



My maternal grandmother, a bright, beautiful Cherokee/English woman, was born in Dahlonega, Georgia in the mid-eighteen hundreds. In a region isolated by a wild and glorious terrain, natives and tenacious immigrants coaxed sustenance from rock. Deer, wild turkeys, and other critters supplied protein needed in diets necessary for hard work. Streams and rivers provided cold, clean water and additional protein of fish, frogs and turtles.

Hot and cool weather crops were eaten fresh in season and "put away" for tough winters. Initiatives to bring electricity to Southern Appalachia did not begin until the 1930's. Life sustaining meats and produce had to be canned, cured, or dried. No easy tasks. The multi-cultural settlers quickly adapted the beloved recipes from their motherland to their new homeland. Where different flora and fauna flourished and familiar ones did not exist, resourcefulness became an important commodity.

John and I consider our Southern Appalachian Cuisine breakfasts, served the third Wednesday of the month, an honoring of the past and an embracing of the future. Although all or part of the meals will be borrowed from Appalachian recipes, like Frank Sinatra, we'll do it our way.

Dale

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