15 November 2012

For the Love of Soul Food (Recipe Included)

Another Food Allergy Gal confession: I love soul food. 

Great Food and Music, are the essence of everything wonderful in my opinion. My family was from the south, so I was born to love soul food and soul music, I think.  Soul food and music is exactly that- it reaches deep in my soul and evokes  emotion...mostly "mmmmgoood" comfort and warmth emotion. In the 1960's the name "Soul Food" was given to this rich, earth based cuisine, largely in part because it was prepared by African American's who had been enslaved for decades before. Some of the foods came over on slave boats and some foods were just left over crops , slave owners gave their slaves to eat.  Foods such as corn and cassava from the Americas, turnips from Morocco, and cabbage from Portugal are staples to this historical cooking style, known as Soul Food. This makes me realize, sometimes the BEST things come from the toughest time. Talk about taking a bad situation and making something great out of it. While I hate the thought of treating any human less than we treat our self, I'm so thankful for the cuisine that came out of this despicable part of U.S. history. 

There was a saying in my family growing up and it started something like this...."Mmmm, I'm hungry. I feel like some BBQ sows ears and stewed tomatoes on white bread," then someone else would chime in, "the kind you gotta life and eat fast, 'fore it falls through the crust?" then another person, ".....and don't forget the 4 RC's and 2 moon pies and some after sippin' flippin' dippin' snuff." If you know what all that means, you are true soul and if you don't, come cook and eat some real soul food with me.

It's hard to find an authentic Soul Food these days. A lot of people just started calling it BBQ.  For the 15 million American's suffering with food allergies or sensitivities while you must ALWAYS check, soul food can easily be made allergy friendly. 
For me, it isn't soul food, unless there are greens and okra on the menu with some BBQ ribs and pulled pork.  
People's passion for BBQ is "somethin' fierce" in this country. I found a documentary on Southern BBQ: http://www.southernbbqtrail.com/southern-bbq-primer.shtml.

BBQ isn't all that "bad for you" by the way, it's all about how you make it. 
If you feel like incorporating a little Soul into your meal, I thought I'd share a different kind of "Green" vegetable for your dinner, OKRA. 

This is top 10 Allergen Friendly and Gluten Free, Okra.

Try Roasted Okra- go crazy, it's actually good for you* and taste great. (I ate this stuff raw when it came into the produce stand, pickled from mom's refrigerator and especially fried when I was in Texas with the extended family.)

  1. 20 okra pods- slice the tops off (or not)
  2. Drizzle with olive oil on a foil covered cookie sheet
  3. Take Sea Salt, Pepper and Chile Powder sprinkle all over- if you really wanted to go crazy- roast a garlic clove with it. 
  4. Bake at 425 for 10 to 15 minutes

It's simple, easy, fast, yummy and has some good vitamins in it. 

*Disclaimer- "Good for you" means if you are normal person able to eat anything and looking for another green vegetable to add variety in your meals. Okra does fall into one of the 33 food family categories as an allergen- so if you have an allergy to it, it would not be "good for you." 

Health benefits of Okra: Okra is a rich source of dietary fiber, minerals, and vitamins; 

often recommended by nutritionists in controlling cholesterol and weight reduction 

programs. Vitamin A, Vitamin C, and Vitamin K can all be found in Okra. Okra is also rich in 


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1 comment:

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