This June join food and grill enthusiasts, food editors, chefs, historians, authors and more for the virtual celebration of 21years of National Soul Food Month. ™ Launched in 2001, National Soul Food Month™ has been touted online, in print and via word-of-mouth. This is the 21st-year celebration in partnership with the Museum of Food and Drink in New York (MOFAD).
National Soul Food Month celebrates the heritage and history of foods and foodways of African Americans and peoples from the African diaspora. The culinary contributions of this group have had an indelible impact on the American menu.
Food is culture and the culture of African Americans is woven into the fabric of the American menu. From the innumerable folks whose creativity, skills and mother wit led to industry changing industrial innovations such as Norbert Rillieux, George Washington Carver or Frederick McKinley Jones; media personalities like Nancy Green or Lena Richards, the first Black woman to host her own television cooking show or Lucille B. Smith who created the first hot roll biscuit mix. The list of those who contributed to this American cuisine is long and in June we will celebrate some of them as we mark 21 years of National Soul Food Month, looking at the past, the present and the future.
The schedule is currently being finalized and will be posted here shortly. However, special thanks and appreciation to our 2022 Presenting Sponsors:
How It Started
Food expert, writer and number one aunt… Charla L. Draper realized traditional soul foods were foods that deserved celebration and needed to be celebrated. So, in 2001, Draper christened June National Soul Food Month. National Soul Food Month appeared for the first time in that year's Chases’ Annual Calendar of Events. The entry in Chases’ Calendar reads:
National Soul Food Month, celebrating the heritage and history of the foods and foodways of African Americans and peoples from the African diaspora. The culinary contributions of this group had an indelible impact on the American menu.
My appetite and interest in food was nurtured in a family of great cooks— both of my grandmothers had skills. Our house was always filled with the aroma of good cooking–soul foods, and scratch baking of the buttery, moist melt in your mouth pound cake created by Mom’s mother Gonga. Dad’s mother —Big Mama honed her skills in Shreveport, Louisiana and her menus included seafood gumbo, braised rabbit, and pear preserves. All of these foods were essential in creating our family food legacy.