Amy Rogers

Coordinator of WFAEats

Amy Rogers is the author of Hungry for Home: Stories of Food from Across the Carolinas and Red Pepper Fudge and Blue Ribbon Biscuits. Her writing has also been featured in Cornbread Nation 1: The Best of Southern Food Writing, the Oxford American, and the Charlotte Observer. She is founding publisher of the award-winning Novello Festival Press. She received a Creative Artist Fellowship from the Arts and Science Council, and was the first person to receive the award for non-fiction writing. Her reporting has also won multiple awards from the N.C. Working Press Association. She has been Writer in Residence at the Wildacres Center, and a program presenter at dozens of events, festivals, arts centers, schools, and other venues. Amy Rogers considers herself “Southern by choice,” and is a food and culture commentator for NPR station WFAE.

What’s your favorite childhood food memory? Watching my mother in a gorgeous cocktail dress sneak into the kitchen before a party so she could eat some real food.

What’s your typical breakfast? Coffee, with a side order of extra coffee

What can you always find in your fridge? Half-and-half. Because you can put it in coffee, tea, cereal, frittatas, and lots of leftover things like tomatoes, potatoes and shellfish to make cream-of-whatever soup.

Kitchen tool(s) you can’t live without? I lived and cooked wonderful meals for literally decades with only one chef’s knife. I now have others but rarely use them.

If you aren’t in the kitchen, where are you? Visiting farm stands, markets, cafes, friends’ homes – anywhere there’s food to be sampled and enjoyed.

Amy Rogers’ website

In case your holiday season wasn’t busy enough, here’s something else to celebrate: It’s National Cocoa Day.

Think you know cocoa, and the chocolate made from it? Test your knowledge with these quick questions.

True or False?

Amy Rogers

Latkes? Check. Chanukah gifts? Check.

Brandy-soaked sugar cubes to set afire…What’s that? You’ve never taken part in a Flaming Tea Ceremony for Chanukah?

Neither had I, nor anyone I knew, not in all our years of celebrating the Jewish holiday known as the "Festival of Lights."

It goes like this: Everyone at the table soaks a sugar cube in brandy, places it in a teaspoon, lights it with a candle, sings a holiday song, then drops the little fireball into a glass of tea, which puts out the flame. Then everyone drinks their tea.

Ballantyne Hotel & Lodge

Get the gumdrops! Whip up the icing! If you’ve ever been tempted to try your hand at baking and making a gingerbread house, this could be your year to claim a really "sweet" prize. The Ballantyne Hotel & Lodge wants you to submit your creation to its Gingerbread Lane competition.

They’re billed as "the most important cookbooks you’ll ever own," and it’s hard to disagree. 

Joanne Caras and her family collected recipes and remembrances from Holocaust survivors around the world, and then performed a series of small wonders. Caras created two elegant books, first, "The Holocaust Survivor Cookbook" and now a new volume, "Miracles and Meals." Both celebrate how human dignity can - and does - flourish under the most horrific circumstances.

"Soup"-er Art

Nov 26, 2012
Campbell Soup Company

Got an art lover who’s also a foodie on your holiday shopping list? Here’s a tasteful gift idea: commemorative Andy Warhol cans of Campbell’s tomato soup.

Stay with me here.

"Spatchcocking." If it’s happening around here this Thanksgiving, nobody’s talking about it – yet.

The peculiar term is probably English in origin. It describes an unusual way to prepare a chicken or turkey, and it’s unlike the traditional Norman Rockwell presentation we’re used to. Yes, those rounded mounds of roasted poultry look beautiful. But too often, their crispy skins hide dried-out white meat, still-pink dark meat - or both. It’s difficult to cook something the size of a turkey evenly. Harder still to keep it moist and flavorful.

Across The Miles

Oct 18, 2012
Amy Rogers

The world may be getting smaller but 10,000 miles between friends is still an impossible distance. So when my friends Stephanie and Marc announced last fall they were moving from Charlotte to Australia, I was crushed. They bequeathed to me the entire contents of their pantry and liquor cabinet, but that did little to help.

“Those who respect law and love sausage should watch neither being made,” goes a familiar quote.*

Here at WFAEats, we don’t wade into matters of law. But we just learned October is National Sausage Month. What’s more, we got word of upcoming classes in the Art of Sausage-Making at Central Piedmont Community College. So it’s prime time for those of you who may have a hankering to make your own hand-stuffed, -shaped or smoked meat products.

If entrepreneurship had a face, it would look a lot like Nila Nicholas’.

In just a few short weeks, the Charlotte-based “candy stylist” has rocketed from a modest local presence all the way to the stratosphere: Her work is being included in 100 gift bags President Obama will bestow on his personal friends in honor of the Democratic National Convention.

Nicholas designs custom candy buffets, sweets tables, and delectable favors for parties and events. Pick a theme or a color scheme, and she’ll fashion a mouth-watering spread.

Sympathy Salmon

Aug 29, 2012