savor — guide to food & dining on the azalea coast “People used to eat the entire animal,” including the head, lungs, heart and so on, says Liz Williams, the president and director of the Southern Food and Beverage Museum in New Orleans. “We don’t really do that much anymore.” Williams notes less common cuts of meat, such as tongue, are starting to gain in popularity again, but these foods would have been routinely eaten by Southerners in the mid to late 1800s. “Pork was big. When possible, people ate a lot of vegetables . . . and then they put up whatever was in excess,” Williams says, adding Southern cooks during that time period would have used a variety of preservation techniques. Meat might have been smoked, salted or preserved in fat. Vegetables were com-monly pickled or dried for use during the colder months. Fruits would have been preserved in alcohol, and the increasing availability of sugar meant they would also have been turned into jams and other sweet preserves. Area plantations such as the Foy family’s Poplar Grove were largely self-sustaining and, with the exception of a few items such as coffee, very few foods would have been purchased elsewhere. At the time, Poplar Grove’s acreage stretched all the way to the sound. “They produced their own salt,” docent Christina Fennell says. “So they used that for preserving meat.” A gristmill on the property ground flour for biscuits and cakes and, in addition to the livestock raised on the plantation, the Foys would also have eaten game such as venison and squirrel, Fennell says. Even drinks such as root beer were produced right there on the plantation. The proximity to the water meant the Foys ate various types of seafood — with the exception of oysters, which they considered slave food — says Felicia Greene, director of tourism at Poplar Grove Plantation. The Foys also grew corn, sweet potatoes, apples and various other fruits and veg-etables. One of the plantation’s main crops was peanuts. Francis Marion Foy examines one of his cornfields at Poplar Grove Plantation while children look on, circa 1880. The African-American children may have been the children of former slaves who continued to work on the plantation as tenant farmers after the Civil War. Voted Best Vegetarian Food by encore magazine Lovey’s Your LOCAL Health Food Store and Café CELEBRATING 12 YEARS • Organic Produce and Groceries • Salad, Soup, Hot & Juice bars • Cafe • Catering • Supplements • Health & Beauty Aids • Wheat & Gluten-Free foods SpecialS Megafood, Kal, Soloray, Veg Life and Sunny Green Supplements 25% off 910-509-0331 Landfall Shopping Center • 1319 Military Cutoff Road www.loveysmarket.com 84 WBM april 2015 PHOTO COURTESY OF POPLAR GROVE FOUNDATION, INC.
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