MenuDirections 2012: Day 1 Photos

The first day of the conference offered attendees a slew of healthy ideas and a taste of Charleston.

MenuDirections 2012, Day 1, Opening Session, Mike Ellis, A.W. Shuck's, Lowcountry cuisineEllis said Lowcountry cuisine is “perhaps the first true regional cuisine,” extending back to colonial days. It reflects “many early influences, including Indian and European,” he noted. Those cooking styles and flavors were further influenced by the West African touches and techniques that slaves brought with them to the New World, yielding dishes that remain the cuisine’s staples.

Commonly used ingredients include rice; corn, served both on the cob and ground into flour or grits; oysters; fried green tomatoes; and “the holy trinity” of peppers, onions and celery.

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