How BBQ Transcends Race, with Michael Pollan (author of Cooked)
Ed Mitchell, a very well-known pitmaster in Raleigh, said the only times he’s experienced race divisions break down was during the Vietnam War, and barbecue. Barbecue and Vietnam transcended race in his experience like nothing else. When I was talking to historians of barbecue (we now have historians of barbecue) they said that even during the tensest periods of racial strife, if the good barbecue place in town was black, whites would eat there. And if the good barbecue place was white, blacks would line up at the takeout window. Barbecue was too important to let normal racial divisions stand in the way.
Brian Lehrer Weekend: Elizabeth Drew remembers reporting on Nixon during the Watergate era; Anand Giridharadas tells a story of violence and forgiveness in “True American”; and Michael Pollan finally learns how to cook. Listen here.
"There’s something about the idea of cooking through an entire cookbook that’s very appealing. Like you’re going to culinary school for $30. BuzzFeed asked chefs to pick what cookbooks they’d recommend cooking through and explain why. Michael Pollan, author of Cooked, recommends In The Green Kitchen by Alice Waters among others to help change cooking from an occasional thing into a gratifying routine.”
Mr. Food Revolution, Michael Pollan, as a new book out called Cooked: A Natural History of Transformation. He tells Weekend Edition:
[T]here’s something magical that happens when people eat from the same pot. The family meal is really the nursery of democracy. It’s where we learn to share, it’s where we learn to argue without offending. It’s just too critical to let go, as we’ve been so blithely doing.”