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By Angela/Michael Medearis

Introduces the effect of African-based meals, cooking innovations, and traditions to American culinary heritage.

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Yams are done when they can be easily pierced with a fork. Serve hot yams along with a bowl of spiced butter. Serves 6. To make spiced butter: Mix the soft butter or margarine, cinnamon, nutmeg, and brown sugar together in a small bowl. Slice yams down the center and serve with the spiced butter. page_62 Page 63 Crackling Corn Bread Slaves were often given the skin of pigs as food. They cooked the skin until it "crackled" and all the fat melted away. Cracklings are a delightful addition to corn bread and greens and are available in many stores around the United States.

If oil rises to the top of the container, stir it back in or pour it off before using peanut butter. Makes one cup of peanut butter. page_70 Page 71 Ghana Plantain Appetizer (Kelewele) This West African appetizer tastes similar to American potato chips. Utensils You Will Need a knife, deep fryer or skillet, small bowl, measuring cup, teaspoon, slotted spoon, paper-towel-covered plate Ingredients 3 cups cooking oil 1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper 2 tablespoons water 6 large unripened plantains, peeled and sliced 1/2 inch thick 1 teaspoon ground ginger 1/2 teaspoon salt Directions In a deep fryer or a skillet deep enough to cover the plantain slices, heat the oil until it is hot but not smoking.

Stir. Turn down heat and simmer until spinach is tender. Toss spinach with butter. Serves 4. page_65 Page 66 Black-Eyed Peas and Rice (Hoppin' John) Black-eyed peas were called cowpeas in Africa. The peas were transported from Africa to the West Indies and then into the Carolinas before the early 1700s. Eating black-eyed peas on New Year's Day is said to bring good luck in the new year. Utensils You Will Need measuring cup and spoons, knife, fork, 5-quart saucepan with a lid, spoon, oven mitt Ingredients 1 (10-ounce) package black-eyed peas 2 cups white rice, uncooked 4 1/2 cups water 1 small onion, diced 1/4 teaspoon salt 4 tablespoons margarine or butter Directions Pour 1/2 cup of the water into a 5-quart pot.

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