5 Soul Food Cookbooks From Top Black Chefs
Branch out when it comes to your holiday meals with cook books from the most popular black chefs.
Holiday cooking often revolves around tradition. It marks a time to consult recipes that have been in one’s family for generations. But if you’re ready to put a new twist on the holiday dishes you’ve dined on ever since you could eat solid food, check out the variety of cookbooks written by the nation’s most famous black chefs in recent years. They’ve updated America’s favorite soul food classics.
[ALSO READ: Soul Food Shapes Identity, Health]
Cooking With Love: Comfort Food that Hugs You: Carla Hall of ABC’s “The Chew” is the latest black chef to release a cookbook. "Cooking With Love" showcases Hall’s experiences whipping up meals with her family, friends and more. A Tennessee native who rose to fame on “Top Chef,” Hall features such classics as gumbo, hoppin’ John and her granny’s five-flavor pound cake in this cookbook that’s received praise from the likes of her “Chew” co-host Mario Battali and cook Jennifer Reese.
B. Smith Cooks Southern Style: Barbara Smith has received praise from Bobby Flay and the late Sylvia Woods. In her 2009 book on southern cooking, Smith offers her take on Creole and Cajun food, catfish and desserts such as Bananas Foster, to name a few.
Vegan Soul Kitchen: In this meat-free book of recipes, chef Bryant Terry shows that it’s possible to enjoy soul food without pork, beef and the like. Meals included in the work include favorites such as peach cobbler, potato salad and greens. Upon its 2009 release, the book received rave reviews in papers that ranged from the Los Angeles Sentinel to the New York Times. Activist Van Jones, who formerly served in the Obama administration, is one of the book’s celebrity fans.
Down Home With the Neelys: This 2009 Southern cookbook from chef couple Patrick and Gina Neely of the Food Network features recipes for Pat’s wings of fire, Memphis-sized pulled pork sandwiches and barbeque deviled eggs, along with classics such as chicken, gumbo, potato salad and greens.
Patti LaBelle’s Lite Cuisine: Paula Deen isn’t the only celebrity who had to alter her dietary habits after a diabetes diagnosis. There’s also Patti LaBelle. After her diagnosis, the singer and cookbook author came up with 100 recipes approved by by the American Diabetes Association in 2004’s Lite Cuisine. Try her “Awesome Oven-Fried Chicken” or “Tastes-Like-Grandma-Made-It Banana Pudding.”
[ALSO READ: Paula Deen’s Diabetes Diagnosis]