It's been said that the South is not really a particular grouping of states, but a state of mind. That may be true, but Southern cooking is real enough, as those who were brought up on it can testify. South of the Mason-Dixon line there are about as many different cuisines as there are states. Southern cookery is not uniform, and it never has been. Much like with so called "Jewish food," the culinary culture of the South is a unique one, made up of a collection of influences of African, English, Native American, French, Scottish, and Spanish cuisines. The ultimate in American comfort food, Southern food boasts big, bold flavors and a whole lot of soul.