Turnip greens and hog jowls

The downside of a once-loved dish

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In the spring, the young man’s fancy
Lightly turns to thoughts of fish,
Served with smoking rolls and coffee,
Heaped upon a chafing dish.
Little does he care for beauties,
Sparkling in their happy teens;
So he gets fried eggs and bacon,
                Buttermilk and turnip greens.
–The Newberry (South Carolina) Weekly Herald, April 10, 1878

It’s turnip greens time.

Namely, it’s time for turnip greens-and-hog jowl, which was such a cherished spring tradition in the South at the turn of the twentieth century that the dish figured into weather commentary. “Oh! How this spring weather makes us long for hog jole and turnip greens,” The Savannah (Tennessee) Courier reported on March 2, 1893.


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