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

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WFAEats
2:04 pm
Wed August 29, 2012

Sympathy Salmon

Salmon with spinach and potatoes.
Andurinha/Flickr

Sometimes the distress call arrives quietly in an ordinary email.

“Hey Amy. Hope all is well with you. I would love to get together with you for coffee or just to talk. I lost my mother on July 17th… I have my condo up for sale and am looking for another job. Lots of changes…”

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WFAEats
7:11 am
Wed July 18, 2012

Eating On A Food Stamp Budget: Wrap Up

Day 7 and Beyond

“How did you do on the ‘food stamp’ challenge?” That’s the question people have been asking me since Sunday. “Did you have enough to eat, or did you have to cheat?”

I recently completed the SNAP Challenge, designed to give participants a taste of what it’s like to feed yourself with no more than the $31.50 per week you’d get if you relied solely on food stamps.

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WFAEats
12:00 am
Mon July 16, 2012

Eating Of A Food Stamp Budget: Day Six

SNAP recipients receive EBT (electronic benefit transfer) debit cards to use for their food purchases.

Day Six: “Who’s Hungry?”

On a long car trip when a fast food joint comes into view, someone will shout it.

“Who’s hungry?”

If you walk into your office with a giant pizza box in your hands, you can call out to your co-workers.

“Who’s hungry?”

When the holiday meal is ready after hours of waiting, it’s a summons to gather and share something special – or even sacred.

“Who’s hungry?”

Who IS hungry? This past week, that question has taken on a very different meaning for me.

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WFAEats
12:00 am
Fri July 13, 2012

Eating On A Food Stamp Budget: Day Five

Amy Rogers

Day Five: Rumors and Reasons

It’s not really about the food.

That’s what I’m starting to realize. People are angry, exhausted, frustrated, despondent. Resentful, worried, afraid or annoyed – but no one I’ve talked with in the last five days is blasé on the topic of food stamps and other programs that help feed the hungry.

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WFAEats
4:32 pm
Wed July 11, 2012

Eating On A Food Stamp Budget: Day Four

Leftovers
Amy Rogers

Time for a mid-week reality check. The jug of milk has started to go sour. The fat in the leftover ground beef we cooked with last night’s spaghetti sauce has congealed into a bright orange slick. I may have just busted my budget by opening a Dollar Tree bag of Twizzlers I discovered in the pantry.

And I hate oatmeal.

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WFAEats
12:00 am
Wed July 11, 2012

Eating On A Food Stamp Budget: Day Three

Spaghetti

“I want spaghetti for dinner,” said a young friend who was visiting me Tuesday.

“We don’t have any.”

She just looked at me and rolled her eyes. So we got in the car to spend the last $5.22 remaining from my $31.50 grocery budget for the week.

So far I’ve managed to feed myself well on the basic, staple items I bought for the SNAP* Challenge. But how do you explain to a child that tonight’s dinner will be cereal or soup again?

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WFAEats
12:00 am
Tue July 10, 2012

Eating On A Food Stamp Budget: Day Two

Rotel seasoned tomatoes marked down to 14 cents a can at Target.
Amy Rogers

Yesterday I was feeling pretty smug about my cost-effective shopping. I’d spent only about half of the $31.50 grocery budget I’d agreed not to exceed as part of the SNAP* Challenge.

Then something happened to shake my confidence in my plan to make the supplies last an entire week. I realized I needed to factor in the cost of items I’d previously purchased or had on hand if I wanted to use them.

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WFAEats
12:00 am
Mon July 9, 2012

Eating On A Food Stamp Budget

What you get for $14 at Super G Mart.
Amy Rogers

Think you could manage on $31.50 a week for groceries? That’s the amount you’d get to spend if you had to rely solely on food stamps.

From July 9 through July 15, I’m taking the SNAP* Challenge. Its purpose is to give well-fed Americans a chance to experience the struggle an estimated 1 in 7 are facing every day in the U.S.

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WFAEats
12:00 am
Tue June 12, 2012

12 Questions For Chef Wolfgang Puck

Wolfgang Puck

Although his name evokes fine dining and over-the-top celebrity events, a world-renowned restaurateur has opened a new restaurant in Charlotte: Wolfgang Puck Pizza Bar. The chef stopped by to visit recently and cordially answered a few questions about food, flavor – and football.

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WFAEats
12:00 am
Fri May 4, 2012

Food Books: A Baker’s Dozen To Give For Mother’s Day

Cookbooks

Let’s admit it: Picking out the perfect Mother’s Day gift is hard. Flowers die in days. Perfume spills. And no one wants junky jewelry.

But books? Ah, a book will always fit and will never need ironing. Even better, it invites the reader to relax, so in honor of the upcoming holiday, I asked some local experts for food-themed book suggestions.

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