Southern food is a celebration of the people within the community, using the agrarian bounty that is constantly around them. It pays homage to the past but is a constantly evolving, ebbing with the seasons and flowing with the constant progression of the South. It is a foodways that really has had a much stronger emphasis on vegetables and sides than huge portions of proteins, and one that is healthy if we show off the diversity of our crops and cooking styles.
Paula looked at me with moderate confusion and disdain and blurted out to her masses, “What’s wrong with just butter and salt in grits?”
And that’s the issue isn’t it? That is the monochrome image of Southern food, one that I am tired of challenging, a simply unhealthy version that has been pushed for decades. True Southern food is so much more than that.