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Though there are abundant “Middle Eastern” restaurants in Atlanta, ones designated as “Israeli” are rare; Tal Baum and a few other chefs are trying to change that. Three new restaurateurs are bringing Israeli-style food to Atlanta.
The Potlikker Papers is a food history of the modern South, “the South that awakes from slumber in 1955 when the cooks and maids in Montgomery step off the buses and begin walking to work, rejecting Jim Crow,” says Edge.
I grew up not far from Maryland’s Eastern Shore, where the South begins, feasting on crabs and oysters from the Chesapeake Bay estuaries. My father is a politician, and each summer my family traveled to a different state for the annual Southern Legislative Conference. I inhaled New Orleans beignets in a swirl of powdered sugar. I learned that North Carolinians eat tangy pork barbecue and that Texans prefer beef brisket. In 1995 I moved to Atlanta, excited to taste the city’s singular brand of Southern cooking.
A proper cubano sandwich is pressed flat until the weight of the griddle and the goo of the cheese seal shut the envelope into which the pork and ham have been stuffed. While most cubano recipes rely on roast pork shoulder, this sandwich, inspired by Eric Smith and Hector Ward at The Texas Cuban, is built on a base of roast pork tenderloin.
In 2002, always ahead of the trending culinary curve, Southern food writer John T. Edge and a friend blew $3,000 on a hot dog-shaped cart in an attempt to provide Oxford, Mississippi cubicle toilers with “an honest $3 lunch.” Their Dunce Dogs venture, showcasing all-beef wieners stuffed inside natural casings, served up with buttermilk slaw and pimento cheese was an immediate failure.