Greetings from Carrboro,
Some things take root. Just as often, there are things that don’t hold on and are lost. The South isn’t for everyone. You can’t walk outside, midday, and not feel that truth. Kudzu took root. A little too well. People swear that in this ridiculous heat you can watch it grow.
And it’s always been that same way with southern food. We took what we liked – or what took root – and made it our own. Flavor, I like to believe, is the gift of poverty. Black-eyed peas and okra and peaches and tomatoes don’t share a common heritage, but all of them sit in the pantheon of southern food. At what point that was agreed on, we’ll never know. It just feels right though.
So, now, I think the south is reaching out again to claim something as its own. The DNA feels so similar; it’s just the accent that is off. My mother’s stuffed peppers always were a lesson in the wild misuse of delicious hamburger meat. The heavy, store-bought peppers were stew-y and not delicious. And, to add insult to injury, my father wouldn’t let me use ketchup. Parents.
Most assuredly, that iteration of stuffed peppers certainly didn’t take root with me. Or anyone else, I hope. So what is the stuffed pepper that the south is slowly but surely grabbing hold of with both hands? The Chili Relleno. Literally “stuffed pepper” in Spanish. I know, I know; it’s from Mexico. But think about it. A roasted Anaheim pepper from Peregrine Farm stuffed with rice, speckled butter beans, and cheese. After the pepper is coated in whipped eggs, it’s deep-fried and drool-worthy. Now you tell me what about that isn’t southern. Am I right? And it’s even easy to say. They better get ready for a new seat in the pantheon.
The Acme chili relleno. Pan-seared salmon. Blueberry shortcake. Grilled beef tenderloin with tomato, cucumber, and feta salad. Summertime ratatouille. Pecan—crusted fried chicken. Housemade spaghetti. Cold bubbly. The Acme tomato plate. Forever roasted pig. Cold zucchini noodles with tarragon & corn cream with cure sockeye salmon. Local flat-iron steak. Peach cobbler with blackberry ice cream. Cast-iron skillet crab cakes. Local melon and arugula salad. Southern sides. Sweet corn cornbread. Fried calamari salad. Watermelon sangria. Paté with pickled peaches. And plenty of air conditioning. Just for you.
Well, that’s all the news from Carrboro. The staff at Acme look forward to serving you soon.
The Staff at Acme
Reservations online or 919 929 2263