The United States could be said to have a heart of flatness. What else is there in the southern Great Plains of Kansas, Nebraska, and Oklahoma besides a flatness bigger than France, bigger than Spain, nearly as big as two Germanys—almost a quarter million square miles of big, flat stability?
Actually, if you know how to look at it, there's a lot here besides the flatness. For one thing, there's plenty to eat. Ask knowledgeable chefs in the southern Great Plains, and they'll tell you about ramps growing wild; porcinis and meaty oyster mushrooms sprouting on logs; quail nesting in sand plum thickets heavy with sweet-tart fruit; wild peaches, passion fruit, and puckery aronia berries that get dried and ground for seasoning meat. Even the cattails conceal treasures; some Choctaw Indians have taught chefs how to knock the tiny seeds from ripe cattail heads to use for flour. Keep reading » Keep reading »