On Second Thought For Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Southern food has a history as rich as its taste. Whether it's red beans and rice, fried chicken, biscuits or potlikker, the history of Southern food stretches from slave plantations, to the Montgomery Bus Boycott, to our own kitchens today. We talk about the origins of our favorite Southern dishes with culinary historian John T. Edge of the Southern Foodways Alliance. He is the author of the new book, “The Potlikker Papers: A Food History of the Modern South.”

We continue our conversation with John T. Edge with a look at where Southern food meets politics. Also joining the conversation is self-defined “soul food scholar” Adrian Miller, and chef Mashama Bailey of The Grey restaurant in Savannah.

In the Jim Crow South, the laws of the land separated black and white. As racial tensions grew, some police departments added African American officers to their squads. Atlanta hired eight men in 1948, but their authority was greatly restricted. These officers inspired Thomas Mullen’s first novel, “Darktown.” We talk with him about his follow-up work, “Lightning Men,” ahead of an appearance at the Decatur Book Festival this weekend.