Cover Image: Black Food

Black Food

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Member Reviews

In 2019, Sarah Ladipo Manyika, the British-Nigerian writer, was at the Open Book Festival in Cape Town. A member of the audience asked her what Toni Morrison’s house smelled like, a question that surprised and delighted her and inspired one of the most beautiful essays I have ever read. You can find Manyika’s contribution early on in Bryant Terry’s striking book, which collates food essays, recipes, poetry, art, playlists, and calls to action by more than 100 creators drawn from the African Diaspora. Terry himself is no under-achiever—he’s an NAACP Image Award winner, a James Beard Award-winning chef and educator and the author of Afro-Vegan and Vegetable Kingdom. It is an extraordinarily generous book, no doubt because of him, packed with stellar names: Michael Twitty, Zoe Adjonyoh, Klancy Miller, Alexander Smalls, Yewande Komolafe, Mashama Bailey, Erica Council, and Nicole Taylor are but a few.

The recipes are to die for: Cheryl Day gives us peach hand pies; ‘The Best Potato Salad Ever- Yeah I Said It!’ by Monica Dayo is flavoured with tarragon and bound with aioli; Shannon Mustipher’s ‘Good Bones’ cocktail with soursop, honey syrup, Rhum and guava draws from the story of Haiti; and Omar Tate’s Vegetarian Gumbo tested his faith— his wife prayed for him— as he contemplated what might be lost through using tofu. “How do I keep the bones, make up its skin, what of its heart, how does it smile?” he asks in an accompanying essay. As Terry says in the introduction: "These pages offer up gratitude to the great chain of Black lives, and to all the sustaining ingredients and nourishing traditions they carried and remembered, through time and space, to deliver their kin into the future. We pray that this collection facilitates reflection on and veneration of our sacred foodways.” I am so moved by this book.
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About seven years ago, I chanced upon my first Bryant Terry book at my public library. I'd just moved and was exploring my new community while also doing some nesting in my new home. So visiting the library and trying new recipes were both on my agenda. His The Inspired Vegan opened up a new world of cooking for me—and when Afro-Vegan was issued a few months later, I immediately bought a copy.

Bryant Terry writes his cookbooks like a generous host, inviting us into his home, telling us stories, offering us a blend of familiar and new flavors—all accompanied by music. Seriously, check out the play lists that he includes in his cookbooks. They're a great source of energy and inspiration, whether in the kitchen or elsewhere.

Black Food has all the characteristics of a Bryant Terry cookbook: good food, stories, playlists and Black history. In Black Food he's not just inviting us into his home; he's introducing us to Black activists and cooks at what I can only call the most culturally rich potluck I've ever attended. Since not all those he profiles are vegan, this book includes recipes for dishes with meat and dairy, along with the delicious vegan food Terry specializes in.

This is a go-buy-it-now-and-maybe-stop-at-the-grocery-on-the-way-home cookbook. You won't want to wait to get cooking and to start meeting the people Terry's going to introduce you to.

I received a free electronic review copy of this title from the publisher via NetGally. I also have already published a paper copy of this book now that it's out. It's that good.
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This book is absolutely ALIVE with color and flavor and ideas.  It's beautifully designed, and gift-worthy, and definitely full of delicious recipes -- some simple and accessible, others a little more exotic.
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Black Food is such an interesting book. It is a collection of essays, poems, stories and recipes written by a large variety of people and illustrates the black experience. The input is structured under different themes such as Motherhood, Queer, Spirituality, etc. I skim read a few of the essays and browsed the titles of the recipes. The photography was also beautiful but not all recipes had one. It is not a classic kind of cookbook, it is more of a complex cultural experience.
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Such a beautiful tribute to all “black food”. Showcasing dishes from all across the diaspora, its definitely a must have for any food lover!
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This book is gorgeous! The love and care poured into it overflows from the page. Oriana Koren’s photographs are gorgeous. The art direction is flawless. I loved the essays by Charlene Carruthers and Adrienne Maree Brown. Thanks so much to Netgalley and the publisher.
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A triumph. It almost defys description. A compilation of essays and reflections of the black experience from every aspect related to food and its impact on life and its struggles. It’s more than the history of a people uprooted and later set adrift without any help or safe harbor. It holds the joy found in sorrow through a voice that’s gained timbre and resilience, over time. It was an honor to set my eyes on this project and spend time in the midst of these artists of the kitchen.
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A really beautifully curated collection of gorgeous art and photography, essays, poetry, stories of family and community, and lots of delicious sounding recipes. It’s truly a joyful celebration of the black experience, showcasing so much talent and creativity. Thanks to NetGalley for the chance to read this unique book.
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Love how this cookbook was designed and laid out! Someone was off about the food photographer for me… maybe too bright? Some of it felt cheap in comparison to the beautiful rich artwork in the book. Can’t wait to try some recipes!
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This is a beautiful collection that effortlessly celebrates the black experience. Black Food feeds the reader essays, stories, and recipes. It truly showcases the creativity of the black diaspora. I loved the mix of new and classic recipes. The photographs are breath taking and the words are just as powerful. The book is split into chapters covering subjects like Motherland, Spirituality, Migration and Black, Queer, Food. This is definitely a coffee table book that will be a valuable resource and lovely addition for any collector.
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Black Food is a masterpiece! From the graphics, to the writing, to the recipes. This is an expertly curated selection of writings, art, and recipes from Black contributors. The work is specifically focused on Black Foodways. This is required reading for everyone! This book is so gorgeous that it will be a welcome piece on any coffee table.
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Black kitchen

Content:
The book Black Food is a cookbook, which brings together the eating habits of Black America in many reviewers. The author, food activist and author of Vegetable Kingdom Bryant Terry, writes in this book a tribute to culinary. Diversity of Black Cuisine. Along with the dishes, you'll find compelling stories from well-known personalities.
 
Opinion
I find this book to be a truly loving compilation of black cuisine. Some of the dishes I even know and have tried. In itself, the yield in this cookbook for me personally a little low, because not everything meets my taste. But I think that the book really appeals to very many people.

Conclusion:
Since I have not found so many dishes that I would like to recreate - certainly a matter of taste - there is from me a good 4 of 5 stars
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I received an ARC from NetGalley.

What a stunning and informative book!
It is not just a cookbook that shares recipes. We learn about history and the stories of POC and their communities as well as learning about the food they grew up with and love. 

It's colourful and excellently designed and a great read. Reading about the food of another culture is always an excellent window into their hearts and souls.
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Black Food is a stunning holistic compendium of recipes, history, culture, essays, and art. It's far beyond a regular cookbook, though there is a variety of wonderful recipes. So many voices and experiences are collected in this one stunning book. 

Thank you NetGalley and the publisher for providing this ARC.
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https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/4125899791

This love letter to Black Food (because calling it a cookbook would be an disservice to Bryant Terry and the other voices of this letter) is filled with the humming of grandma in the kitchen, the stories passed down from one generation to another during meal times, laced with the smells of food alchemy emanating early on Sunday morning and overnight during holidays. This letter to the Black/ African diaspora honors and celebrates history while painting vivid concepts through engaging art filled thought out the pages of Black Food. Black Food: Stories, Art, and Essays

From the publisher:

A beautiful, rich, and groundbreaking book exploring Black foodways within America and around the world, curated by food activist and author of Vegetable Kingdom Bryant Terry.

In this stunning and deeply heartfelt tribute to Black culinary ingenuity, Bryant Terry captures the broad and divergent voices of the African Diaspora through the prism of food. With contributions from more than 100 Black cultural luminaires from around the globe, the book moves through chapters exploring parts of the Black experience, from Homeland to Migration, Spirituality to Black Future, offering delicious recipes, moving essays, and arresting artwork.

As much a joyful celebration of Black culture as a cookbook, Black Food explores the interweaving of food, experience, and community through original poetry and essays, including "Jollofing with Toni Morrison" by Sarah Ladipo Manyika, "Queer Intelligence" by Zoe Adjonyoh, "The Spiritual Ecology of Black Food" by Leah Penniman, and "Foodsteps in Motion" by Michael W. Twitty. The recipes are similarly expansive and generous, including sentimental favorites and fresh takes such as Crispy Cassava Skillet Cakes from Yewande Komolafe, Okra & Shrimp Purloo from BJ Dennis, Jerk Chicken Ramen from Suzanne Barr, Avocado and Mango Salad with Spicy Pickled Carrot and Rof Dressing from Pierre Thiam, and Sweet Potato Pie from Jenné Claiborne. Visually stunning artwork from such notables as Black Panther Party creative director Emory Douglas and artist Sarina Mantle are woven throughout, and the book includes a signature musical playlist curated by Bryant.

With arresting artwork and innovative design, Black Food is a visual and spiritual feast that will satisfy any soul.
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This book will blow your mind. It is an essential for your cookbook library! While the title is Black Food (and there are a ton of incredible recipes), it's the Black history, literature, art, and food that are all woven together that makes this a powerful, compelling, and important collection. I'll definitely be purchasing it for myself and for others as gifts.
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Bryant Terry's Black Food is not just a cookbook that shares recipes- the book also shares the rich histories and stories of black people+communities and their culinary heritage. It also includes vibrant images and illustrations that make this book so fun to read. We need more books like this, that share the black joy and beauty!

I received an ARC from NetGalley. All reviews are my own.
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A gorgeous book full of history photographs art culture &recipies.A true gem to treasure a book I will be gifting to friends.#netgalley #blackfood
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Bryant Terry's Black Food is absolutely stunning. An examination of a culture so rarely recognized; absolutely love!
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An absolutely stunning book full of beautiful art, photographs, history, culture, and recipes. I thoroughly enjoyed this.
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