On Thanksgiving, early in the morning, for such is the time of day it’s done, I bake a pumpkin pie. I think of England while prepping everything, because the spicing – cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, ginger – dates to medieval times in England and beyond. Sure, you find that flavor pattern in many European dishes, a […]Read more "The British Were in the Kitchen, Too: A List of Books on Food History"
Memory, fickle memory. To recall the long-ago past becomes a journey into a place where truth flits behind trees or ducks into closets, an exhausting game of hide-and-seek where no player easily becomes “It.” Do you remember going to the Saturday afternoon movies when you were a kid? How you got so engrossed in the […]Read more "Pumping Sunshine: Susie H. Baxter’s Rural North Florida Childhood"
They’re not visible to the naked eye, but I hear their raucous cawing every day, the very second I open the door. Crows, maybe ravens. No matter where I live, these glossy black birds congregate. The only place on earth to escape these intelligent creatures lies far south, in Antarctica. Crows and ravens eat whatever […]Read more "A Murder of Crows, An Unkindness of Ravens"
Although I’d read her Pulitzer Prize-winning novel, The Yearling (1938), in high school, I came to admire Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings’s work more via the great unifier – food. I bought a paperback copy of Cross Creek Cookery nearly forty years after Charles Scribner’s Sons first published it. Now the spine on my cheap copy splits […]Read more "Muses: Cross Creek and Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings"
There’s something about explorers who ventured into the New World that always grips my imagination. Maybe it’s because men could leave home for years, move from place to place, free to be the souls they were born to be. As a woman, I could never have done that. Nor would it be easy today, either. […]Read more "William Bartram and the Nature of Florida"