The Ocracoke Preservation Society recently held its annual Fall Membership Pot Luck Dinner and Membership Meeting. Folks were invited to bring "favorite Ocracoke dishes" to share at the pot luck table. It was (no surprise) an extremely tasty supper after which folks were invited to share memories and stories associated with "their favorite island food".
What followed was an amazing time of warm and evocative storytelling. People recalled some of their favorite island cooks, including Clinton Gaskill and his corn "flitters".
There were stories of Ocracoke's famous "old Drum" meal which involves boiling drum (the fish, not the percussion instrument) with potatoes, hard boiled eggs and crackling. It's a dish that is frequently followed by some good sleeping.
And we not only heard about but got to taste some island favorite desserts including blackberry dumpling and fig cake.
The stories were still going on the next day. At the bank I heard Judy Garrish remembering her father riding his bike to the Sound every Saturday, raking up clams, bringing them home in his bike basket and fixing Clam Chowder for his family.
No matter where we grew up, we all grew up eating; memories of family dishes and meals sure have the power to take us back.
Our latest Ocracoke Newsletter is an article written by Marvin Howard in 1954. You can read it here: http://www.villagecraftsmen.com/news102111.htm.