Southern foods are strange, but delicious

Published 3:38 pm Tuesday, February 28, 2023


Contributing columnist

One thing that I’ve learned is that no matter where you go, people are people. I realized that when on a trip to New York, I observed cars in their front yard up on blocks, and once in New Jersey, I saw houses with Christmas lights still up in the middle of summer just like the rest of us. We are all pretty much the same. That is, unless you’re talking about what’s good when it comes to supper time. However, it seems that what’s considered normal is in the eye of the beholder.

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I could easily list the weird foods I’ve seen across the country that people consider good but looked like something you should blow into a Kleenex. However, let’s turn the mirror around towards ourselves and look at the so-called normal foods we eat in the south that would send a Northerner running for cover.

It might be weird to some that many folks here eat Pigs Feet and don’t even get me started on Chitterlings. If that’s what it takes to be Southern, then I’m out. Who was the guy that thought inventing potted meat was a good idea? I’m convinced it was originally meant to be dog food but was mistakenly labeled for humans.

Before we make fun of Northern folks though, maybe we should remember those Southern favorites — Vienna sausages and Spam. Don’t pretend that you don’t eat it. Many of my Northern friends can’t wrap their head around chicken fried steak. Is it chicken or steak? What it is, is delicious. Wait until I explain black-eyed peas to them.

I can’t remember a day of my childhood where there wasn’t a pone of cornbread on the stove. Still, people that don’t live in the South have never heard of it. I’m sorry, but I don’t want to live in a world that doesn’t include cornbread.

I’m amazed how many people in the North think lobster is something desirable. The first time I tried it, I spent 15 minutes trying to break into it only to find the meat was pretty bland. I haven’t worked that hard on something since I tried to solve the Rubik’s cube. Plus, I could always just take the stickers off that when I became frustrated. The waitress saw my displeasure with the lobster and said, “Your supposed to dip it in butter.” Well, you could dip anything in butter and have it taste good. That’s what butter does. It makes things delicious. You can keep the weird-looking sea creature and just bring me a bowl of butter.

Chicken and waffles is something that we only see in the South. I say either bring me fried chicken or bring me waffles, but let’s not mix them. If we are going to combine crazy foods that don’t go together why not bring me a hot dog wrapped in a pancake? Wait. That’s called a corn dog. Why is it that anything on a stick tastes so good?

Apple sauce is certainly enjoyed by people all over. However, I personally have never understood the purpose behind it. I have teeth. I can chew my apples the old-fashioned way, thank you very much.

Southern food, although delicious, is indeed capable of blowing the minds of those in the North. They look at me like I’m Granny Clampett when I talk about potato candy, tomato sandwiches and chocolate gravy. I think the next time I’m talking with friends from the North, I’ll tell them about Souse just for fun. What do you think?