The style of cooking originated during American slavery. In particular, canola and vegetable oils and leaner cuts of meat became more widely used in the preparation of soul food; some cooks even prepared vegetarian equivalents to traditional soul food dishes. Opponents to soul food have been vocal about health concerns surrounding the culinary traditions since the name was coined in the mid-twentieth century.
Many techniques to change the overall flavor of staple food items such as nuts, seeds, and rice contributed to added dimensions of evolving flavors. Further information: Soul food health trends, Soul food prepared traditionally and consumed in large amounts can be detrimental to one's health. A lively and informative new podcast for kids that the whole family will enjoy! Red beans. Many of the various dishes and ingredients included in "soul food" are also regional meals and comprise a part of other Southern US cooking, as well. Chicken-fried steak, a soul food staple in which beef is pounded thin, dipped in milk or egg, dredged through a flour, salt, and pepper mix, pan-fried, and served covered in a cream gravy traditionally made with pan drippings. Good Things to Eat was published in 1911; the author, Rufus Estes, was a former slave who worked for the Pullman railway car service. Aside from the meat, it was common for them to eat organ meats such as brains, livers, and intestines.  Scholars have noted that while white Americans provided the material culture for soul food dishes, the cooking techniques found in many of the dishes have been visibly influenced by the enslaved Africans themselves. , A foundational difference in how health is perceived of being contemporary is that soul food may differ from 'traditional' styles is the widely different structures of agriculture. Many African-Americans were offended by the Nation of Islam's rejection of pork as it is a staple ingredient used to flavor many dishes. More recently, health-conscious contemporary cooks have sought to limit the use of animal fat and salt, especially in light of the prevalence of high blood pressure and diabetes in the African American population. The term celebrated the ingenuity and skill of cooks who were able to form a distinctive cuisine despite limited means. After slavery, many, being poor, could afford only off-cuts of meat, along with offal. Some cooks have even adapted recipes to include vegetarian alternatives to traditional ingredients, including tofu and soy-based analogues.  This urges a consideration of how concepts of racial authenticity evolve alongside changes in the structures that make some foods more available and accessible than others.. An important aspect of the preparation of soul food was the reuse of cooking lard.  What meats people ate depended on seasonal availability and geographical region. Southern Native American culture (Cherokee, Chickasaw, Choctaw, Creek, Seminole) is an important element of Southern cuisine. The 23rd President of the United States Benjamin Harrison, and former first lady Caroline Harrison, took this same route when they terminated their French cooking staff for a black woman by the name of Dolly Johnson. Following their emancipation from slavery in the 1860s, African American cooks expanded on the coarse diet that had been provided them by slave owners but still made do with little. Soul food has been criticized for its high starch, fat, sodium, cholesterol, and caloric content, as well as the inexpensive and often low-quality nature of the ingredients such as salted pork and cornmeal. Collard greens (usually cooked with ham hocks, often combined with other greens). Updates? Other popular dishes are fried chicken, short ribs of beef, macaroni and cheese, and potato salad. Ham hocks (smoked, used to flavor vegetables and legumes). One notable soul food chef is celebrated traditional Southern chef and author Edna Lewis, who released a series of books between 1972 and 2003, including A Taste of Country Cooking in which she weaves stories of her childhood in Freetown, Virginia into her recipes for "real Southern food". Macaroni and cheese. One of the earliest written uses of the term is found in The Autobiography of Malcolm X, which was published in 1965.  It has been noted that enslaved Africans were the primary consumers of cooked greens (collards, beets, dandelion, kale, and purslane) and sweet potatoes for a portion of US history..
Cornbread (short bread often baked in an iron skillet, sometimes seasoned with bacon fat). I KNOW I’M NOT SUFFICIENTLY OBSCURE by Ray Durem.
, Introduction of soul food to northern cities such as Washington D.C. also came from private chefs in the White House. LeRoi Jones published an article entitled "Soul Food" and was one of the key proponents for establishing the food as a part of the Black American identity.  Due to the historical presence of African Americans in the region, soul food is closely associated with the cuisine of the American South although today it has become an easily identifiable and celebrated aspect of mainstream American food culture.. Milk and bread (a "po' folks' dessert-in-a-glass" of slightly crumbled cornbread, buttermilk and sugar). The bountiful vegetables that were found in Africa, were substituted in dishes down south with new leafy greens consisting of dandelion, turnip, and beet greens. Chitterlings or chitlins: (the cleaned and prepared intestines of hogs, slow-cooked and often eaten with vinegar and hot sauce; sometimes parboiled, then battered and fried). Dishes or ingredients commonly found in soul food include: Biscuits (a shortbread similar to scones, commonly served with butter, jam, jelly, sorghum or cane syrup, or gravy; used to wipe up, or "sop," liquids from a dish). Changes in hog farming techniques have also resulted in drastically leaner pork, in the 21st and late 20th centuries.
, Soul food is frequently found at religious rituals and social events such as funerals, fellowship, Thanksgiving, and Christmas in the Black community.. All parts of the pig were used; sometimes only the bony or less desirable cuts were available for purchase.  Muhammad and Gregory opposed soul food because they felt it was unhealthy food and was slowly killing African-Americans.
Street Team INNW, St. Paul, Louis Armstrong’s house opened to the public. To a far greater degree than anyone realizes, several of the most important food dishes that the Native Americans of the southeastern U.S.A live on today is the "soul food" eaten by both Black and White Southerners. African Americans were often employed as cooks in white households and in restaurants, and they incorporated the influence of their employers’ favoured dishes into their home cooking. Chickens and pigs could be raised on small-scale farms without special fodder, and pork, fresh or smoked, appeared in many dishes. The first soul food cookbook is attributed to Abby Fisher, entitled What Mrs. Fisher Knows About Old Southern Cooking and published in 1881.
Many other cookbooks were written by Black Americans during that time, but as they were not widely distributed, most are now lost. putting pork in collard greens). These techniques included roasting, frying with palm oil, baking in ashes, and steaming in leaves such as banana leaf.. When game or livestock was killed, the entire animal was used. They also contain a number of phytonutrients, which are thought to play a role in the prevention of ovarian and breast cancers. It was not uncommon to see food served out of an empty gourd.
Freshwater catfish was especially identified with soul food. …  Figures such as LeRoi Jones (Amiri Baraka), Elijah Muhammad, and Dick Gregory played notable roles in shaping the conversation around soul food. Desserts include pies and layer cakes, cobblers, and puddings, often incorporating pecans, peaches, and berries. The term soul food became popular in the 1960s and 1970s in the midst of the Black Power movement. Pork, more specifically Hog became introduced into several dishes in the form of cracklins from the skin, pig's feet, chitterlings, and lard used to increase the fat intake into vegetarian dishes. Yams: (not actually yams, but sweet potatoes). Soul food takes its origins mostly from Georgia, Mississippi, and Alabama, a collection of states commonly referred to as the Deep South.
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