If you’ve ever had a sorry excuse for a buttermilk biscuit in Brooklyn or lackluster cheese grits in Portland, you know that, bless their hearts, people from coast to coast are trying to recreate the aesthetic and authenticity of our region’s food.
But living where the sweet tea is sincere and the BBQ is tops isn’t something we take for granted, and here at Southern Living, we love to see our farmers, artisans and chefs take Southern food forward.
Here are three of our favorite products to use in your own kitchen right now:
Cajun Grain | Kinder, LA
If you think brown rice is for yogis and health nuts, Kurt and Karen Unkle might be just the people to change your mind. They can count Donald Link, Emeril Lagasse and John Besh amongst the fans of their sustainably harvested brown jasmine rice, which is bagged and delivered fresh from their Southern Louisiana fields.
beta verde Home-Sown Jam | Winston-Salem, NC
Mother-daughter duo, Margaret and Salem Norfleet Neff jar up Southern flavors with a twist. In between managing their local farmers market and hosting garden-to-table dinners, Margaret and Salem create jams like Blackberry Mint Whiskey, Strawberry Balsamic Black Pepper, and Smokey Cayenne Cherry.
Samovar Gardens Fine Teas | Huntsville, AL
Us Southerners know that one of life’s greatest luxuries is an icy glass of tea with a spring of mint. The Front Porch Special, a blended tea made by the Samovar family in Northern Alabama, takes it to a new level with hints of bergamot, jasmine and spearmint mixed into a bold black base that lives up to its name.