Grub Americana

food production

Okra: Ladies’ Fingers of the South

Okra, or ladies’ fingers as the pods are sometimes referred to because of their long, tapered, finger-like shape, is thought by many historians to have originated in east Africa.


The fig was believed to be one of the earliest plants cultivated by the human race.


Persimmon fruit, when ripe, is delicious eaten fresh. But they make wonderful pies, cakes, cookies, and breads.

Yam or Sweet Potato?

Almost all reddish-orange fleshed tubers eaten in the good ole’ US of A are sweet potatoes—not yams.

TV Dinners

Although it was the Swanson Company of Omaha who coined the name “TV dinner,” they were not the inventor of the frozen meal.

Why Turkey?

Exactly when and how turkey came to be the centerpiece of our Thanksgiving table remains a time-lost food mystery.

Coffee Snob

Okay I admit it, the “best part of waking up” is not Folgers in my cup. It is not that I don’t like coffee, nor do I have anything against Folgers. Quite the contrary. Not only do I love coffee, but I am an official Starbuck’s Gold Card carrying coffee snob. And I rarely, if […]

Mayhaws: The Revival of a Once Forgotten Fruit

A few months ago, while visiting with some ladies at a local retirement community, the discussion turned to homemade jellies and the fruits from which they’re made. One of the women, born and raised in Louisiana, mentioned that her all-time favorite jelly was mayhaw, a fruit that until then I had never heard of. By […]