Some foods, cherished for generations, loom large in the lives of North Carolinians. Author Georgann Eubanks set out on a cross-state journey to research and document 12 of them. “I was particularly interested in foods that have a strong history in NC and that come ripe only for a very limited time each year, forcing us to wait for their special tastes and textures,” she says.
Although her selections represent the entire state, there are foods—such as ramps, apples and goat’s milk—that she associates with our neck of the woods. “I love WNC and did much of the writing holed up in my little 900-squarefoot cabin on a windy ridge in Mitchell County in sight of the Black Mountain Range,” Eubanks says. She spoke to native people in Cherokee to learn about ramps, to Bill Carson at the Orchard at Altapass for a lesson on heirloom apples and to the granddaughter of Carl Sandburg about the poet’s family farm.
Young and old will find appeal in the foods Eubanks features. “We all have powerful memories associated with foods and the smells and tastes of our family’s familiar dishes,” she says.
The Month of Their Ripening: North Carolina Heritage Foods through the Year, September, 2018, nonfiction, hardcover $28, e-book $19.99, by Georgann Eubanks, and published by UNC Press, Chapel Hill, NC. To learn more, visit GeorgannEubanks.net. The author will be at City Lights Bookstore in Sylva on Friday, December 7, at 6:30 p.m.