My guest today begins his newest book with this declaration of purpose. “This is a book about the taste of place and the styles and stories of cooking that define it. It is a book about how people talk about their lives and their histories through the stories that flow from field, marsh, kitchen, and table. This is a book about tradition—the human process of making sense and discovering invention through experience, lived, remembered, imagined…It is a book about how the taste of place expresses a love of place. This book originates in a particularl place, but it resonates with foodways far beyond its borders. The place in question is the Eastern Shore of Virginia.”
Those are some of the first words in Bernard L. Herman’s new book A South You Never Ate: Savoring Flavors and Stories from the Eastern Shore of Virginia. Bernard L. Herman is the George B. Tindall Distinguished Professor of American Studies and Folklore at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. He has previoulsy published on numerous topics, ranging from the artist Thornton Dial to the development of the townhouse in early American city. And given when this podcast drops, it’s particularly appropriate that his 2012 Thanksgiving essay for the magazine Saveur was anthologized in a collection of the year’s best food writing.