Free Black Man in France: James Hemings Makes His Culinary Mark in History

Free Black Man in France: James Hemings Makes His Culinary Mark in History

Hello Meltingpot Readers, I had one of those driveway moments the other day when I heard this story on NPR. It’s about Thomas Jefferson’s enslaved chef, James Hemings, yes, the brother of Sally Hemings. James was apparently quite the culinary genius, so much so, that when Jefferson traveled to Paris for a five-year stay, he took James with him so he could learn the art of French cuisine. While there, James lived as a free man, indeed learned the secrets of French cooking and considered a bid for freedom. Check…

Breakfast, Kids and International Flavors

Breakfast, Kids and International Flavors

Hi Meltingpot Readers, If you could sum up Ms. Meltingpot’s favorite things in the world, children, breakfast foods and international travel would probably make the top-ten list. Well, the New York Times combined these three things in stupendous photo essay this week called, “What Kids Around the World Eat for Breakfast” in their Sunday magazine. I’ve reread it several times, shared it with my own crumb snatchers, and then checked out the online version which offers a few more photos than the print magazine. Besides providing a glimpse into other…

Soul Food: Deconstructed & Delicious

Soul Food: Deconstructed & Delicious

Hi Meltingpot Readers, Sometimes I really love my job as a writer and cultural thinker. It sounds very nebulous to describe myself that way and granted, there’s not a lot of money in the business of thinking and talking, but it does provide some wonderful opportunities. Like last night. I had the honor of playing ‘hostess’ at a literary dinner celebrating this wonderful new book called, Soul Food:The Surprising Story of an American Cuisine, One Plate at a Time. The menu for the meal was pulled from recipes in the…

Look What I Bought!

Look What I Bought!

Hi Meltingpot Readers, All summer long, I was trying to teach my kids the value of money. So, we literally saved every penny we found on the street with the goal of purchasing something we all really wanted. Once you start looking, it’s amazing how many people walk over money in the street…if it’s a penny. Well, all of our pennies (and a few quarters, nickels and dimes) were enough to purchase half of a Vitamix blender. I added the other half of the funds and voila, we are officially…

Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free: The Way We Eat Now

Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free: The Way We Eat Now

Hi Meltingpot Readers, So, this weekend we celebrated all three of our Kinky Gazpacho kids with a family party at casa nuestra. My parents came up, my sister, brother and cousins were here. We had a full house and it was really lovely. El esposo manned the grill and my mom and I made a bunch of lovely salads. And then there was the cake issue. I think it is only fair that since I make all three kids share one birthday celebration, that at least they get their own…

My Kids are Food Snobs. Hooray!

My Kids are Food Snobs. Hooray!

Hi Meltingpot Readers, This past weekend el esposo and I drove the boys down to North Carolina to stay with my parents for spring break. Granted it snowed there yesterday so they won’t be coming home with a tan and sand in their shoes, but hey, at least they’re down South. El esposo and I only stayed for two nights, but we managed to go out for dinner one of those nights with my parents, my grandmother and an aunt and uncle. Sadly, where my parents live is a wasteland…

Wednesday Round-Up: Finding Zion, Fried Chicken and Black Women in Britain.

Wednesday Round-Up: Finding Zion, Fried Chicken and Black Women in Britain.

Hi Meltingpot Readers, It’s Wednesday, I’ve searched the web, so you don’t have to. Let’s get to those tasty, new links. 1. Check out this quickie but quirky interview with novelist turned memoir writer, Emily Raboteau. Her new book, Searching for Zion is travelogue, crossed with journalism, mixed with memoir. In the book, Raboteau travels the world trying to find the ‘Promised Land’ for Black folks.  I’m reading it right now and fell in love on the first page. 2. Talk about tasty. I watched Soul Food Junkies on Monday…

Kimchi and Cheddar: Korean Food Gets Cheesy

Kimchi and Cheddar: Korean Food Gets Cheesy

Hi Meltingpot Readers, Here’s something for my fusion foodie friends. Yesterday I was working hard at my office at Temple University and I didn’t want to venture far to grab a bite for lunch. As luck would have it, there’s a brand new food truck parked right outside my building called Wingo Taco. I guessed Mexican, but I was wrong. Better said, I wasn’t all the way right. Dear readers, you know I was doing a meltingpot jig in the street when I found out that Wingo Taco is serving…