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local foods of North Carolina

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Does anyone have any thoughts on foods local to north carolina?

there's the obvious, barbecue, and the correlatives like brunswick stew, and the ever disappearing fried cornbread, but what about the other stuff? so far I've found:

Ramps (an onion of sorts, there's a ramp festival in I think Henderson every year that I'm going to try to get to)

Squirrel Nut Candy Zippers

muscadines, my new love, and scuppernongs, which I haven't tried yet.

anyone know of any products or produce local to NC?


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  1. Pimiento Cheese Sandwiches! No matter what the occasion, no matter how fancy, when they list the foods served, they always mention pimiento cheese sandwiches. Until I lived in NC I'd never had one and since I've moved to the DC area I haven't seen or heard about pimiento cheese sandwiches. They're all good but I remember having one at Pyewacket that was especially delicious.

    4 Replies
    1. re: Anova
      Katherine Williams

      Pimento Cheese is not indigenous to North Carolina, its more a general Southern food. In fact Southern Living did a little story on it this past Summer. However, two great places in the Raleigh area to get good homemade pimento cheese sandwiches are Hayes Barton Cafe and Dessertery, where they have Grilled Pimento Cheese sandwiches on the menu. Now that's a great twist to the old favorite! Hayes Barton is right in the heart of the Five Points area of Raleigh on Fairview just off Glenwood Avenue. They have a wonderful old soda shop atmosphere with a WWII theme including 1940s music. Also AWESOME desserts. Definitely worth the trip, but expect to search awhile for a parking spot. The other great pimento cheese place is in downtown Apex at the Salem Street Soda Shop on Salem Street. Everytime I go there, the firemen from down the road are eating there, so you know its good. Posting a link and pic. of Hayes Barton below.

      Link: http://triangle.citysearch.com/profil...

      Image: http://a600.g.akamaitech.net/7/600/33...

      1. re: Anova

        Your pimento cheese sandwich MUST be on white wonderbread with real mayonaise, and should sit for a bit before eating !!

        1. re: Linda Mac

          There's also the jalapeno pimiento cheese omelette at Mary's of Course in W-S! So good!

          1. re: Linda Mac

            I love pimiento cheese, but not on white bread. In desperation one night, I spread the cheese on a ginger snap and a star was born! The more peppery and gingery the cookie, the better. I know it sounds odd, but the flavors marry beautifully. I went away for New Year's weekend and my friend's mom had made a tub of pimiento cheese - I went out and bought a box of Peek Freen's Ginger Crisps and introduced me friends to the combo - they though I was nuts, but then ate the entire tub of cheese with the ginger snaps!

        2. I'd consider liver pudding a native North Carolina food. I had never seen it till junior year at Carolina when my roommate returned triumphant from the grocery store with a grey brick of pig liver. I was skeptical at first, but it was quite tasty in a fried sandwich.

          Blue skies,

          1. k
            Katherine Williams

            Here is a list of food-related things that are native to North Carolina:

            Mount Olive Pickles (from you guessed it, Mount Olive, NC)

            I always thought Duke's Mayonnaise was local to NC, named after the university in Durham, (and because I'd never heard of it til moving here), but it is named after the founder, Eugenia Duke of Greenville, SC.

            Cheerwine - a cherry-flavored soda invented in Salisbury, NC (between Charlotte and Greensboro) and only sold in a small handful of nearby states. During youth group trips from Atlanta to the NC Mountains in the late eightes we regularly stocked up. Now its found in Atlanta and you can order it online at www.cheerwine.com. (Hurray for e-commerce!
            Pepsi - another soda invented in NC, but in New Bern. Sorry I can't give you any more details because I'm a native Atlantan and Coke is tops with me, but New Bern is a neat town. I believe it was NC's capitol at one time.

            Pig Pickin' - a strictly North Carolina term for a BBQ event where the pig is selected that morning then slaughtered and roasted whole over a grill. Lots of places around the state offer to do it all for you, just provide your truck or SUV and they hitch up the grill with pig inside and you grill it all day. Fun stuff.

            Pack o' Nabs - another colloquialism coming from North Carolina. It means those 6-packs of peanut butter and/or cheese crackers you get out of vending machines or at the convenience store. Nabs, short for Nabisco, I suppose, but all the ones I ever see around here are produced by Lance, Inc. in Charlotte. Hmmmm....

            1 Reply
            1. re: Katherine Williams

              Cheerwine might only be sold in a couple states, but it's not unique. I'm from PA and we had Cherokee Red and it was pretty much the same thing.

            2. Does anyone remember Spanish Bar? A delicious spice cake with white frosting that was sold at A & P groceries for decades? Yum!

              1 Reply
              1. re: Linda Mac

                Not only remember it, I regularly give out recipes for it. It's one of the recipes Charlotte Observer readers request constantly. There is still a version of it being sold in the Vermont Country Store catalog.

              2. Hatteras clam chowder - broth based rather than cream (New England) or tomato (Manhattan). Named after Cape Hatteras, NC.

                13 Replies
                1. re: mojoeater

                  Texas Pete hot sauce and Krispy Kreme doughnuts, courtesy of Winston-Salem. And Lexington-style and Eastern-style BBQ.

                  But I don't think NC alone can claim ramps.

                  1. re: mojoeater

                    Broth based chowder is also known as Rhode Island clam chowder. I would tend to favor the Rhode Island term, as there do not seem to be any quahogs in NC, the main ingredient in clam chowder. I guess you could get away with using the tinier little necks or cherrystones if you had to.

                    1. re: joshuahmel

                      No quahogs in NC? Ha! I've dug plenty from the mud.

                      1. re: Cake Ladies

                        One of my favorite things as a kid was clam-diggin' on the Outer banks. All the chowder down there is made with local clams.

                        1. re: Cake Ladies

                          Then why do they not sell them at fish markets in NC?

                          1. re: joshuahmel

                            quahogs are the big clams, best for stewing rather than eating from the shell, so they don't often show up at markets. Find a good clam house and call ahead to tell them you want them. Red Barn in Onslow is a great market, but I'm guessing if you hunt around, you'll find one close to you if you're near the coast.

                          2. re: Cake Ladies

                            I think quahogs are the same as little necks. I'm not sure, but I think so.

                            1. re: Stack8

                              Both little necks and cherry stones are types of quahogs or at the least sizes of quahogs. The clams that go by the name quahogs are the extra big ones, which it is my understanding are not that good to eat outside of chowder or a fritter because they are too tough. (Am not normally a reference on clams but just finished Saveur which happened to have an article on Rhode Island clam shacks in it. Made me want to get to the New England coast pronto!)

                              1. re: jean9

                                I read that article too! I made those "Stuffies"! I got a dozen cherrystone clams and then supplemented the clams with some canned clams. The recipe called for just canned clams but who has 24 empty quahogs shells lying around (well, I do now)? They were gobbled up at a party and everyone has asked for the recipe.

                                1. re: southernitalian

                                  I am glad to hear you had such good results with the recipe. I will have to give it a try. Where did you purchase your clams?

                                  1. re: southernitalian

                                    Stuffies are made with quahogs, not cherrystones. Jean9 is correct: hard-shell clams come in three different sizes: littlenecks (small), cherrystones (medium), and quahogs (large). They all have different uses. In New England, we also have soft-shell clams (steamers), which are eaten steamed or deep fried in batter.

                                    1. re: joshuahmel

                                      The ones I got at Harris Teeter were labeled Cherrystones but were about as big a clam as I would be comfortable eating. Spent my summers on Martha's Vineyard and went to school in Boston so I've seen all kinds of clams. I don't care what they're called, they were good!

                        2. B&G fried pies--they're made in W-S and it wasn't until I moved away that I realized they were more of a Piedmont thing.

                          Nabs are a definite--I don't know about them being short for Nabisco. The only ones I've ever seen anyone eating are made by Lance. To me, to be considered "nabs" they have to be the peanut butter on cheese cracker variety.

                          1. And of al the liver pudding - Neese's is the favorite. They distribute it in these little trucks.

                            Also, Blenhein Ginger Ale

                            5 Replies
                            1. re: Jimmy Buffet

                              PS - There is Liver Pudding and Liver Mush. Both sold in stores there.

                              Whatever the difference is is beyond me. Never tried either, although I've considered it. The main thing that held me back was that I didn't know how to serve it during the four years I lived in Greensboro.

                              Alas, now that I live in the Baltimore area, I probably will never try Neese's Liver Pudding, but there is a guy in my local Lowe's Store here - bought our appliances from him when we moved in - who mentioned he was from Greensboro, NC and if we ever went down, would we please bring him back some Neese's Liver Pudd'n.

                              1. re: Jimmy Buffet

                                how to serve liver pudding. just slice it and broil it so that it gets a crunchy crust. serve it like you would any other breakfast meat

                              2. re: Jimmy Buffet

                                correction - Blenheim's Ginger Ale comes from Hamer SOUTH Carolina, near Bennetsville - great website:

                                there's a store locator tab so you can get your fix.

                                Maybe you were thinking of Cheerwine?? started before 1920 in Salisbury North Carolina

                                1. re: kariin

                                  Looks like Jimmy's last post was about 6 tears ago, so I'm afraid he'll miss out on the store locator tip.

                                  Don't think anyone would confuse Blenheim and Cheerwine...especially if they had ever tasted both, lol.

                                  1. re: carolinadawg

                                    When I was younger I always associated the taste of cheerwine with doctor pepper.. neither of them I liked very much at the time.

                              3. I think we can make a legitimate claim that Shrimp and Grits was invented by Bill Neal at Crook's Corner (or was it at La Residance) in Chapel Hill. I know people all over the South claim it (especially low country), and who can blame them - it's such a brilliant dish.

                                On the other hand, I think Blenheim's ginger ale is from South Carolina even though I wish we could claim it as our own. Here's the Blenheim's Shrine:

                                2 Replies
                                1. re: Graig

                                  I'd disagree that Bill invented it. It was a traditional Charleston fisherman's breakfast. But Bill certainly improved it and elevated it to white-tablecloth restaurant fare. And his version is still one of the best there is.

                                  1. re: kathleen purvis

                                    Alamance County cheese dog - A bun with several long strips of cheese that are put in a bun that is steamed. Then mustard, chili and onions are added to make a cheese dog all the way. (No hot dog in an Alamance County cheese dog).

                                    Barbecue slaw - red slaw where the barbecue sauce is mixed in with the slaw. Generally found in Lexington style Barbecue restaurants. Very tangy. Good on sandwiches as well as burgers.

                                2. I could probably fill up several pages with suggestions on this one. But a short list: Damson plums, parched peanuts and boiled peanuts (depending on how close you are to the Virginia or South Carolina line), Sundrop and Cheerwine, Texas Pete, Moravian cookies, fried pies in wax paper envelopes (found at the checkout counter at Lexington-style barbecue restaurants), that really soft chili that goes with mustard and onions on grilled hot dogs and hamburgers in Eastern N.C., 12-layer cake (mostly found around Lumberton, sometimes with only 7 or 8 layers, but still great), Carolina Treet barbecue sauce, red slaw and -- oh lord, should I go on?

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: kathleen purvis

                                    Yes, please, do go on. I'm getting hungry just reading this.

                                  2. What about Mama Dip's chicken - her restaurant is in Chapel Hill

                                    8 Replies
                                    1. re: sdoby22

                                      Bright Leaf hot dogs from Carolina Packers in Smithfield, NC. Skins are bright red; inside has a little "kick" to it, unlike a regular hot dog. They are quite good, and when you have one, you almost become addicted... Most of us who grew up in eastern NC are quite familiar with them. They are sold in selected grocery stores across the state. Many restaurants within an hour or two drive from Smithfield will sell them. Shorty's in Wake Forest, Roast Grill in Raleigh, Short's in Selma, just to name a few.

                                      1. re: goodeatsinadive

                                        Slight correction. Shorty's uses Jesse Jones (According to their in-store signage). Don't know what George uses at Roast Grill, but its not Carolina Packer, as they are not red, but brown. While I prefer the red "southern style" dogs (and prefer Jesse Jones over Carolina Packer/Bright Leaf), Roast Grill is one of my favorites - I like the "burnt" with slaw and onions, mustard and chilli - my real problem is limiting it just 2 ( OK maybe 3). And Shorty's is #1 in my family's book. Like Carolina Packer (and their Brigth Leaf brand) Jesse Jones is a NC product - used to be Jesse Jones Sauasage Company in Raleigh that was sold to/became Goodmark Foods, which later sold the Jesse Jones brand to someone else who still produces their hot dogs and bologna. Goodmark specializes in Slim Jims - another great NC product.

                                      2. re: sdoby22

                                        Yes, but the question was about local N.C. foods. Dip's chicken is fine indeed, but there is fried chicken in a lot of places, not just N.C.
                                        (Sorry, meant that as a reply to sdoby22. I never seem to click on the right thingy.)

                                        1. re: kathleen purvis

                                          Sourwood Honey.There is nothing like it. If you have a chance to lay your hands on some buy twice the amount you think you might want or need. It won't be enough and honey lasts practically for ever. Don't bother with the comb in the jar stuff, it is wasteful unless you like chewing on honeycomb.

                                          1. re: mardy

                                            As a South Carolina native (but proud North Carolina resident), I do have to point out that Blenheim Ginger Ale is a South Carolina concoction, crafted in Blenheim, SC and originally sold at Four Oaks Farms in Lexington, SC.

                                            Liver pudding and boiled peanuts are also not NC originals; as a matter of fact, I have had a harder time finding boiled peanuts up here than I ever did in SC or GA.

                                            Cheerwine, however...nobody outside of NC has ever heard of it! Also, let's not forget Sun Drop.

                                            1. re: Suzy Q

                                              Sun Drop actually was created in Missouri but I think it's been adopted by the Carolinas as a hometown drink. Either way, it's been owned by Cadbury Beverages for a pretty long time. A friend of mine managed the acccount when I was with Cadbury. And let me tell, you they don't know nuttin' about the South up there in Connecticut (they've since moved to the Dallas area). They operate on an independent bottling system so it may be bottled locally but that's it.
                                              Cheerwine, though, is the real deal.

                                              1. re: Suzy Q

                                                I must stand up for Tennessee and say that we drink oceans of Sundrop and Cheerwine here, particularly in smaller towns. We also have fried pies in waxed paper, sourwood honey and two different Nashville-area canners of the soft chili for hot dogs. Occasionally in upper east TN you can find 12 layer cake. I think it must all trace back to the era when Carolina and Tennessee were a single state. IMO the mountainous parts are still a single state.

                                                1. re: Suzy Q

                                                  and you gotta love that new cheerwine commercial tweaking all the northerners in CLT

                                          2. would fried apples count? (as a local dish, not necessarily a product)

                                            (by fried i mean sauteed in butter and brown sugar in a cast iron skillet)

                                            my grandmother was born and raised in the mountains of western NC and fried apples were a staple side dish at her house when i was growing up.

                                            being from FL myself, hardly anyone here has heard of fried apples, and forget about being seeing them on a menu here in the flatlands.

                                            man, as a kid the church covered dish events up there used to rock! then again, the ones down here weren't so bad either, just a little different......

                                            8 Replies
                                            1. re: hitachino

                                              I'm new to NC. Just how are these fried apples made?

                                              Also, I must point out that "liver mush" mentioned above is nothing more or less than Philadelphia scrapple, which is pretty firmly identified with the Amish folk of Pennsylvania. Not that that is a bad thing--scrapple, or liver mush, is good stuff.

                                              1. re: johnb

                                                Just slice the apples like you would for a pie (maybe not quite that thin) and sautee them in a little butter, add the brown sugar just before they are soft. Generally served w/ pork chops.

                                                1. re: johnb

                                                  I alway thought they were different. In NC we have livermush and scrapple. I though scrapple was a mix of all leftovers from the hog while mush was primarily a liver http://www.neesesausage.com/

                                                  1. re: quazi

                                                    Maybe you're right. This Neese outfit seems to have many variations, but I suspect there's a great deal of overlap among the recipes for scrapple, liver mush, liver pudding, etc etc etc put out by different companies.

                                                    I'm in far western NC, west of Asheville (Franklin to be specific). I'd like to try some of these Neese products, but their website isn't too clear about their geographical coverage. How far west do Neese products get?

                                                    1. re: johnb

                                                      If you want a little history, there's a reason for the livermush/scrapple overlap. The Great Wagon Road, which brought settlers from the Philadelphia area into the South, went through North Carolina. So scrapple came with them. There are also some, most notably Bob Garner, who think the traditional Lexington-style barbecue resembles German braised pork shoulder and also came in with settlers from Pennsylvania.

                                                      1. re: kathleen purvis

                                                        I appreciate Bob Garner's knowledge in most respects, but I think he overstates the case a bit with that theory. German settlers certainly had an influence on BBQ when they encountered it, but I think it was more a matter of adopting and adapting the pre-existing BBQ traditions of the Carolinas rather than introducing a whole new tradition. It should be noted that in South Carolina, when you look at BBQ restaurants with German family names, it is not unsual for them to use the whole hog (Sweatman's) or hams (the numerous Bessinger chains) rather than shoulders exclusively. It also seems much more of a leap of logic to theorize that braising independently turned into smoking than it does to theorize that German settlers simply adapted the exisitng smoking techniques of the colonial Carolinas and adjusted the cuts of meat and the sauce composition to suit their tastes.

                                                      2. re: johnb

                                                        I found some Neese products at Ingles when I lived in Asheville.

                                                  2. re: hitachino

                                                    I grew up in TN and my mom made fried apples with the apples from our June apple tree.. Apples, butter, and white sugar (not brown). And no cinnamon, please.

                                                    Sometimes I crave fried apples.

                                                  3. Well Gardners in Rocky Mount is the best place for pork barbecue, barbecued potatoes, brunswick stew, hush puppies and sweet potato jacks. Don't forget Yoohoo (chocolatey drink) and Moon Pies, a cold Sun-Drop (now in diet woohoo). Pig picking cakes, watermelon rind pickles, pickled okra, chitterlins (don't like em), pickled pigs feets, pork brains in a can with eggs(my dad loves em), collards with hamhocks, fried fatback (they don't know what that is here in ohio), persimmons (best in the mountains of Hickory). Oh my I could go on and on lol.

                                                    6 Replies
                                                    1. re: Drexxy

                                                      YooHoo was invented in New Jersey, and I'm pretty sure Moon Pies are not "native" to NC. What's a pig picking cake? Thats a new one.

                                                      1. re: carolinadawg

                                                        Pig Pickin' Cake: Yellow cake flavored with mandarin oranges and layered with frosting made from whipped topping (Cool Whip), pecans and vanilla pudding. Three or four layers. Served cold from the refrigerator. At least that's how they do it in my part of SE N.C. A sweet, cool ending to ENC BBQ.

                                                        1. re: Cake Ladies

                                                          Chitterlings are also more of a South Carolina affectation - never met anyone in NC who eats the nasty things - but there's even a Chitlin' Festival every year in Salley, SC.

                                                          I think pig picking cake is a lot like hummingbird cake, if you know what that is.

                                                          1. re: Suzy Q

                                                            though I am not one of them there are many tarheels that eat chitlins. THey are in every grocery except whole foods and fresh market

                                                            1. re: quazi

                                                              A lot of people eat chitterlings .. only a few will admit it though.

                                                              When we served them in a hospital cafeteria in S. Virginia we would sell 200-250 portions.

                                                      2. I just want to say that I am thoroughly enjoying this thread, and I think we should do it for many more states!

                                                        1. Pepsi...the taste born in the Carolinas!
                                                          Perdue...it takes a tough man to make a tender chicken!
                                                          Hatteras style Clam Chowder...with potatoes, bacon, onions and a clear broth. Is that how they make it in Rhode Island?
                                                          And there aren't many things better than a Carolina oyster roast or pig pickin'...even better if they are the same event!!

                                                          1 Reply
                                                          1. re: SweetPhyl

                                                            "Hatteras style Clam Chowder...with potatoes, bacon, onions and a clear broth. Is that how they make it in Rhode Island?"

                                                            Yes, and it is known throughout the nation as Rhode Island style, along with the other two styles: New England and Manhattan.

                                                          2. ramps are found anywhere from south carolina up to canada. they are not local to just north carolina.

                                                            1. Scuppernong grapes and Bojangles biscuits!!!!!!!

                                                              1. has anyone mentioned boiled peanuts yet ?

                                                                1 Reply
                                                                1. re: KyMikey

                                                                  Boiled peanuts have a SC/GA point of origin. My grandfather farmed and grew peanuts in Harnett County for years and thought boiled peanuts were the nastiest thing he'd ever seen when my dad's family from GA introduced them to him.

                                                                  I also remember doing complete laps of the old Carter-Finley Stadium as a kid looking for boiled peanuts at State games - I grew up going to South Carolina games in Columbia also, and you couldn't walk five feet without hitting a boiled peanut stand at Williams-Brice. I finally broke down and asked one of the guys selling roasted peanuts at Carter-Finley if he had any boiled peanuts, and he laughed at me and said that "we don't eat those up here, honey." He had a great laugh with his buddies about it.

                                                                2. Bass Farm sausage - bulk pork sausage in mild or hot - made in Spring Hope...

                                                                  1. Pork Chop Sandwitch, Mt. Airy

                                                                    1. I grew up on the NC/SC line, so a lot of my memories are Carolina rather than North or South - but we always fried our cornbread like pancakes. They were crunchy/lacy on the outside and soft in the center, not sweet - I still crave this! When I've discussed it with others from eastern NC, they agree that it seems to be a eastern Carolina thing. In central and western NC the cornbread is always baked, and sweet like cake.

                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                      1. re: lponeill

                                                                        I'm originally from the western part of the state--no one in my family has ever served sweet cornbread. We've always made buttermilk cornbread cooked in a cast-iron skillet.

                                                                        Now, my husband is from the eastern part the state and likes his cornbread crunchy!

                                                                      2. Moravian Sugar Cake- from either the bakery in Old Salem or Dewey's in WS

                                                                        1. WOW! My daughter has to do a report on NC, and we live in Oklahoma. We have to make a native snack and reading that Pepsi and Mt. Olive products were invented in NC is amazing! I ONLY use Mt. Olive pickled goods because they just have this amazing flavor, I had never looked at the back of my jalapeño or pickle jars before :)

                                                                          1. I grew up there and moved away at age 30 which was 28 years ago. Things have changed a good bit but when I think of NC food, I don't think about things that are manufactured there. I think about the food that was grown in the warm earth and turned into something glorious by hands of the mothers. They used fatback, lard and hamhocks to season the vegetables because they were raised during a time when you supported your families on what you could grow. Liver pudding came from that tradition; so did watermelon rind pickles. Butter beans, field peas, corn, fried okra, fresh tomatoes and cucumbers remind me of home. We picked up pecans off the ground in Fall, cracked while watching ACC basketball and then baked them into pies and cakes for the holidays. Collards were on everbody's table after the first frost. So were sweet potatoes. Pickles, chow chow and/or hot pepper vinegar was served with greens. Cold ice tea, cornbread &/or biscuits and you've got some good eatin'!

                                                                            6 Replies
                                                                            1. re: brutland

                                                                              Brutland, your post brought a tear to my eye. This is what it means to me as well, I'm fortunate enough to say....

                                                                              1. re: brutland

                                                                                Brutland, that was beautiful!

                                                                                I remember my Daddy buying me mini Lance pecan pies at the local filling station when I was a little girl and eagerly unwrapping them from their plastic sheaths and gobbling them down, splitting crumbles all over his pick-up truck.

                                                                                I remember family reunions replete with all sorts of long-gone delicacies and picnics on the side of the Parkway with my grandparents.

                                                                                I remember steaks grilled on charcoal... I remember fried livermush and cornbread crumbled into milk....

                                                                                1. re: brutland

                                                                                  I agree with you. I am about your age and originally from Eastern NC. When I think about NC foods, I think of dishes my mother and grandmothers made. Sometimes it is about the dish itself but equally, it is about how they prepared it. Here are a few other dishes to add to the list: chicken (pot) pie (no vegetables or crust just thinly rolled dough dropped into chicken/hen broth), sweet potato pudding made similar to sweet potato pie filling but with grated raw sweet potatoes, mackerel cakes (pre-cursor for me to crab cakes), stewed catfish with onions (often eaten at breakfast), fried salted herring fish, raisin cake made from fresh ground raisins, 'haslet' -made from some unknown part of the pig and the list goes on!

                                                                                  1. re: Meherrin

                                                                                    Meherrin - so eloquent and descriptive. Are you from eastern NC, by chance? I am from western NC and I don't remember really any of the dishes you mention…. but I want to try them all!

                                                                                    1. re: Tehama

                                                                                      Meherrin wrote "I am...originally from Eastern NC".

                                                                                2. The only Damson's plum jelly/jam are found in a Farmers Market in Wilmington, NC., my Favorite. They also sell local butter beans and peas during the season.

                                                                                  1. Hardees was started in NC but I wouldn't call it an NC food.

                                                                                    1. On our flight to Kitty Hawk, a bunch of us Cheeseheads stopped at East Raleigh airport, where Dexter and the fellas there made us "Pickled Chicken", a regional barbeque. Grilled 24 half chickens over coals, no seasoning or marinade that I was aware of, deboned it into a mixture of 4LBs butter, 1 qt. white vinegar, (1LB butter to 1 cup vinegar) salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes to taste. Let it sit awhile before serving but warned us not to let it simmer as it makes the vinegar bitter. Served it with boiled red potatoes, bobbing in butter, and boiled cabbage, chopped, and seasoned with salt, pepper and red pepper flakes again to taste all dripping in that sauce.
                                                                                      My goodness, was that good! Tried the recipe at home here in Wisconsin and found it even tastes better the next day reheated as the red pepper flakes spread their heat more evenly. One of the best meals and hospitality I've experienced in all my travels...will make this dish for my Gourmet Club this month.

                                                                                      1. My family is from a small town called Warrenton, NC; I grew up in NY but spent my vacations and holidays on my grandparent's farm in NC as a child. I, like a few others here, think of NC food in relation to the food I grew up with...crispy fatback and slab bacon from my grandfather's smoke house, the wedge of extra sharp cheddar chopped up with a butcher knife and slowly melted in a cast iron skillet in bacon fat over heat from a wood stove then fresh eggs stirred in for scrambled, my grandmother's buttermilk biscuits with strawberry preserves or apple butter...oh how I can still taste that meal!

                                                                                        Crispy fried chicken or fish caught in the pond, a skillet of fried potatoes & onions, mixed greens with chopped onion, hot sauce and pepper vinegar on top and fried hot water cornbread (which is patted out and fried like a pancake and not sweet). Sweet potato jacks, blackberry dumplings, black walnut pie, peach cobbler, apple dumplings...

                                                                                        Pine State Ice Milk - anyone else remember this treat? The company was a creamery and also made the buttermilk my grandmother used. It was a Raleigh company, now in the National Register of Historic Places. I loved this what I called "ice cream", it was less sweet than real ice cream and really reminds me of my childhood.

                                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                                        1. re: Cherylptw

                                                                                          Re: Pine State, yes, I know what you mean, Vern.