Cynthia Graubart attained culinary celebrity status last year when she won a James Beard Award for the cookbook she co-wrote with famed Southern author Nathalie Dupree. It’s called Mastering the Art of Southern Cooking, and it is amazing. It took four years to write, and it weighs six and a half pounds. It’s got 750 recipes and another 650 variations on the standards. It is becoming itself a standard--a bible--for any Southern cook. On the show today, she talks about the book and how to define the South by food.
Eudora Welty was one of the South’s most beloved writers, and her fiction is still a study in detail and dialogue and wit. Her settings were often Southern, but her themes were universal. Eudora won multiple awards in her lifetime, including a Pulitzer in 1973 for her novel The Optimist’s Daughter. She passed away in 2001.
The audio you hear of Eudora in this episode is part of Bill Ferris' recent book The Storied South, which is a collection of interviews with iconic writers, musicians, historians, photographers and artists.
Bill tells us here about his close friendship with the famous Southern writer.
Contributor Kelley Libby visits a shape note sing event in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia. Sometimes this style of singing is referred to as Sacred Harp. That’s because there’s an old tune book called The Sacred Harp, and most shape note singers use it, especially in the deep South.