The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Soul food bridges ethnic taste buds

By Keisha McDuffie/reporter
   Somewhere in the mid-1960s, with the civil rights movement just beginning, terms like soulful, soul man or just soul were commonly used in connection with blacks. It was around that time, the term soul food was coined.
   According to “A History of Soul Food” (www.foxhome.com/ soulfood/htmls/soulfood.htm), what had previously just been “po’ folks food,” was in the ’60s being described by two words that reminded people of hearty, godly and filling.
   Soul food is really an ethnic cuisine originating in the South with African slaves. With only slight regional variations, the ingredients and dish preparation differ very little.
   Watermelons, okras and sesame seeds are just a few of the crops that began to show up in the gardens of southern America. Old wives’ tales describe slaves carrying the seeds in their hair, clothing, even in their ears, according to “A History of Soul Food.”
   Slave owners gave African slaves only the leftovers and undesirable portions of meat, according to The African American Registry. Slave owners got the meatiest cuts of roast, ham, or beef. Fatback, hog maws and neck bones were among the remnants salvaged and served by the slaves.
   The African American Registry reports that Africans living in America at that time (and since) more than made do with the food choices they had to work with.
   Some of the ingredients commonly found on soul food menus include black-eyed peas, turnip greens, pigs’ feet, cornbread or hushpuppies, ham hocks and chitterlings. Chitterlings are cleaned and prepared hog intestines, slow-cooked and often eaten with vinegar and hot sauce.
   Tarrant County residents who would like to experience soul food for themselves can check out Drew’s Place in west Fort Worth, John Carter’s Place in east Fort Worth and Hatch’s Corner in Forest Hill.

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