Eating Appalachia

Author Darrin Nordahl has a new book out this month.

I found Eating Appalachia: Rediscovering Regional American Flavors a fun and interesting read. There were lots of interesting tid-bits I didn’t know about indigenous Appalachian foods.

This 208 page, easily-held hardcover is nice mix of history, color photos and recipes for every ingredient in the book.

As a Root Beer lover, I was especially interested in the history of sassafras root/oil and how it was banned by the FDA in 1960, and later, safrole was “listed as a controlled substance in the United Nations Convention against Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances treaty.”

A few of my favorite recipes:

  • PawPaw Whiskey Sour
  • Aunt Clara’s persimmon Pudding
  • Wild Ginger Poached Pears

From the Press Release
“Although Appalachia might not be considered a culinary mecca for most foodies, the large region has an exceptionally diverse ecology. Its broadleaf forests contain thousands of plants not seen anywhere else in North America. In Eating Appalachia Nordahl also discusses some of the larger agribusiness, governmental agency, and ecological issues that prevent these wild, and arguably tastier foods, from reaching our table and illustrates how our food choices impact our local ecosystems. Additionally, he profiles the champions of these native foods and the annual festivals that celebrate the ingredients. Some of the festivals featured include the Feast of the Ramson in Richmond, West Virginia; the PawPaw Festival in Albany, Ohio; and Elk Night at Jenny Wiley State Park in Prestonburg, Kentucky.”

Eating Appalachia

You can purchase your copy on Amazon HERE