Our travels through the South have brought us into contact with “soul food.” It originated in African American culture and is a term used in the South. Growing up, I thought it was food that was good for the soul and in a sense it is. The items listed on soul food menus consist of meatloaf, pig feet, fried chicken, fish, candied yams, collard greens, macaroni and cheese and cornbread. barbecue is also a southern tradition, with ribs and pulled pork being the most popular. Pulled pork and ribs are not at all healthy, but oh so good.
After checking into our hotel in Atlanta, Professor DeLaney took us to Pig and Chick for dinner. The barbecue was delicious and something that we have all had before. Collard greens were new to most of the group, some liked them and some didn’t. During dinner we all learned that foods are basically the same but depending on what part of the country you’re from, the names vary. As we continued our journey farther south we came upon a soul food place called Mama B’s. I was a little disappointed, but everyone else was pleased with the selections they made, and all agreed the candied yams were scrumptiously delicious.
The lesson we learned from all of the food and why it is called soul food was an eye opener for most of the group. What does it have to do with history? Pig feet and other parts of the pig were all that the poorest of blacks could afford, chickens were raised in many front yards, greens were inexpensive and easily grown in home gardens. These foods went along way with a large family. At times I’m sure this soul food has soothed many souls of both blacks and whites. After all souls know no color.