The Appalachian Food Summit wasn’t just a day of trying different foods from Appalachia.
That was part of the day, sure. But there was also plenty of teaching and learning going on, as well.
“And this year’s theme is cornbread and roses about solidarity in different movements and labor markets and coal mines and things like that, and the role that food has played in that in Appalachia. So we have some great speakers today that are focusing on that,” said Nancy Bruns, AFS Board Member.
A West Virginia teacher talked about food during the West Virginia Teacher Strike. Wilma Steele spoke on the West Virginia Mine Wars, and how food and the red bandanas brought miners of different cultures together at difficult times. And composer Ed Brown gave a taste of what’s to come.
“The songs are all from the musical that I’m creating called ‘Rednecks’ which is of course the story of the Battle of Blair Mountain. And (it’s called) ‘Rednecks’ because they would identify themselves in battle with those red bandanas that they wore. You know, black miners, white miners, ones from Italy, they were all rednecks together fighting for a common cause,” said Brown.
Oh, yeah, and there was food. Food from many different background. Pepperoni rolls were featured, they are a West Virginia staple, of course. Fritti, a type of Italian doughnut, was a big hit too.
“I’m just going to make a hole in the dough there. And then make the hole pop, see? And then they dry,” said Pamela Delaude, who was in charge of the frittis, as she demonstrated the process of making them.
The next Appalachian Food Summit won’t take place until 2020. But you can stay up to date with the AFS by visiting their Facebook page.