Meet Toni Tipton-Martin of Southern Foodways Alliance

Meet one of the founders of the SFA and preserver of Southern food culture.


My name is Toni Tipton-Martin and I am, one of the 50 founders of Southern Foodways, and, also a founder of the new organization Foodways Texas in Austin. SFA has done an amazing job of preserving and investigating cultures and diversities that were absent from the southern food story. And so there's so many people that made contributions over the years and their stories, their contributions were just basically ignored. And so the really wonderful thing about southern foodways and what it contributes now to southern food, is bringing those stories and those people to life. If I were going to give a show and tell presentation about the food of the South, I would go to completely off script and not use a food or a pantry item. But I would actually use my hands. And that's because the women of my ancestry were not often provided with the appropriate tools to accomplish the jobs that they did. And yet they managed to measure and to accomplish incredible creativity just with the use of their hands. So they could pat out rolls. They could pat out biscuits. They measured seasonings and herbs. They just had a, an amazing understanding and sense of touch. The person in the South who represents Southern food to me, who is the most important role model, would be Edna Louise. And Edna Louise was known as the [UNKNOWN] of southern cuisine. She was a regal presence and yet she was very down to earth very approachable. She was so giving and open with her talent and sharing it. surprising, I would make one of her recipes if I were ever going to be able to cook for her. And I would make her blackberry cobbling, cobbler Because of its simplicity and how fantastic it is. No one can ruin it. And she would be amazed at that.
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