food, history, rural life, and how we connect our cultural past and future
In honor of Chef Edna Lewis
In the cozy and warm dining room of Okra’s Restaurant in Manassas Chef Carla Hall and I got to share our skills in honor of the memory of Chef Edna Lewis (1914-2006), the author of The Taste of Country Cooking.
It was a lovely meal, Carla is a talented cook, coming up with tasty riffs on Lewis’ menu for a winter’s dinner. As she worked to finish and plate the meal I spoke for a bit on Lewis’ importance in the history of 20th c. African American cuisine. The diners were interested and enthusiastic – buying all the 30th anniversary editions of Taste offered for sale.
The evening was a fundraiser for the Journey Through Hallowed Ground a dynamic organization celebrating the 180 miles of history between Gettysburg and Monticello; a National Heritage Area and National Scenic Byway.