Friday, September 28

Southern Six-Pack: From the Great Bacon Shortage to Charlie Brown's Great Pumpkin

It's that time of the week Fido and pop yourself a cold one using this brilliant opener.

1. Let's start with the question on everyone's minds. Will there or will there not be a worldwide bacon shortage? As much as we respect Stephen Colbert's plan to "stockpile bacon, pancetta, ham hocks, canned ham, and Jon Hamm," Slate's Matthew Yglesias has convinced us that there's probably nothing to worry about.

2. Which is good if you want to sample the bacon bourbon at Restaurant August—or make some of your own. (Last step: "Punch a hole in the frozen fat and pour the bourbon through a strainer once again.")

3. With the notable exception of barbecue—ribs, in particular—Memphis might not always get the culinary props it deserves. Kerry Crawford of the I Love Memphis blog tells Saveur about 7 undersung foods you can only get in Memphis. (Still hungry? This week Crawford also chronicled her top ten bowls of mac-n-cheese in Memphis.)

4. Food Republic interviews John Darnielle, the man behind indie rock act The Mountain Goats.* A native of California, Darnielle has made his home in Durham, NC, for several years now. Being a vegetarian hasn't stopped him from embracing some of the iconic foods of his new home, including grits, peanuts, and collard greens (minus the ham hock, we assume).

5. Our Man in the Rockies, guest blogger Adrian Miller, spoke on NPR's All Things Considered about celebrating ethnic diversity through food in his hometown of Aurora, Colorado. (We think the whole story is super interesting; Adrian comes in around the 8-minute-mark.) Culinary tourism is just one way that the Denver suburb is trying to capitalize on its diverse ethnic makeup for reasons ranging from community-building to economic growth.

6. Don't be a blockhead. Halloween is still a month away, but it's not too early to start preparing for the arrival of the Great Pumpkin. (While you're at it, take Linus's advice and never jump into a pile of leaves with a wet sucker.)

*Not familiar? Check out Darnielle's NPR Tiny Desk Concert. Dig the melancholy lyrics over catchy melodies, often about the pains of teenage boy-into-manhood. Which, okay, sounds kind of heavy. (We're more dinner fork than Pitchfork over here.) But trust us, he's good.