|John J. Beck|
Elon University history professor Dr. John J. Beck will explore how those influences merged to form a common cuisine — though with many variations — from Virginia to Texas in “Southern Cooking, High and Low: A Short History of the Cuisine of the South,” at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, August 14, at the Asheboro library.
Beck’s talk, sponsored by the library’s Margaret C. Taylor Memorial Culinary Arts Collection, is free and the public is invited.
Beck notes that traditional Southern fare was created and cooked at home rather than fostered by restaurants — whether in the houses of affluent families by African American women before and after the Civil War, or for the social events of less well-to-do people, such as church picnics, wakes and family reunions.
Now Southern food is being taken in new directions by professional chefs who approach the cuisine with the same reverence that they have treated French and other celebrated cooking traditions.
Beck holds a Ph.D. in American history from UNC-Chapel Hill with a specialty in Southern history. He is co-author of Southern Culture: An Introduction and is currently working on a history of Southern food.
He retired from a career in the North Carolina Community College System, last serving as Dean of Arts and Sciences at Granville Community College.
The library is located at 201 Worth Street. For further information, call 336-318-6803.