July 24, 2014

Asparagus – Shoots and Roots

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by Joy Salyers My friend (and amazing artist) Jessica Clark posted this pic on Facebook Tuesday. While she was rejoicing in it finally being the time of year when your nails are dirty for all the right reasons and things are sprouting, when I saw the beautiful asparagus spear, what I thought of was not shoots but roots. Let me explain. Asparagus is a perennial, the fruit tree of vegetables. When you settle … [Read more...]

A Class Perspective on Daylight Saving Time

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by Joy Salyers, NC Folk Executive Director How is your first work day on Daylight Saving Time winding down? If you are like some of my Facebook friends, it wasn’t an easy start. “Last time I was up before the sun it was to catch a flight for a fun weekend. Today is just to go to work . . . .” or “I like having the evening light longer but having to arrive at work again in the pitch black of night sucks!” And a … [Read more...]

North Carolina Blueberries

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by Deborah Miller I didn't actually GO blueberry picking with Joy Salyers and Elijah Gaddis, but I heard all about it and got to enjoy the bounty.  Heck, I don't even know where they went. But that Monday, I came into work to find a large container on my desk filled almost to overflowing. So I had them by the handful.  At first. Then I slowed down to popping them one by one just barely biting into them so I … [Read more...]

Dan Dunkel’s First Brunswick Stew

Dan Dunkel

by Joy Salyers On May 19, my family and I headed up to Person County to the 125th anniversary of Berry's Grove Baptist Church.       Berry's Grove is on Berry Road, in what is either Timberlake or Little River, depending on whether you're trying to mail something there or drive to it. Being raised Baptist, I know that any church celebration is likely to bring some of the best food … [Read more...]

Sometimes Community is Just a Piece of Cake

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Here at NC Food we write about all aspects of our state’s traditional foodways. We tell potential bloggers to think of food as communication - what growing, preparing, and eating in certain ways says about a community's traditions, history, and values. This week I saw an example of community values emerging through food in a powerful way. My partner Isaac worked for five years as a reporter at The Times News in … [Read more...]

Oysters in the Parking Lot

Cabbage Collards

One of the best perks of doing fieldwork for the North Carolina Folklife Institute is the amazing food you run into on the road. When I arrived in Brunswick County last night for a community meeting related to a folklife survey we’re doing, supported by the National Endowment for the Arts, fieldworker Steve Kruger showed up with a trunk full of goodies – collards, cabbage collards, and a huge sack of oysters he’d … [Read more...]

Dropping in to Say Happy New Year

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by Joy Salyers with help from Deborah Miller I have to confess right off, that I don’t remember much in the way of New Year’s traditions in my family, food or otherwise. Sure, my great-grandmother cooked cabbage and black-eyed peas for luck and prosperity, but we were almost never at her house on New Year’s Day. At our house, with two working parents, it seemed more a day of recovery from the holidays, and a last … [Read more...]

Joy and Deborah’s Excellent Adventure to Person County

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by Deborah Miller One of the things I already know I love about working here is when Joy starts a sentence with “We need to go …. ”  Not one to need too much convincing, I can be ready to go in a split-second.  And this time, she said “We need to go drive up to Roxboro to see this Sappony exhibit at The Kirby Gallery before it ends on Friday.”  It was a beautiful sun-filled day driving up Hwy. 501 North as Joy … [Read more...]