Soul food includes some of the most gratifying dishes: heaping portions of fried chicken, mac and cheese, hoppin’ John, black-eyed peas, okra, collard greens, cornbread and biscuits. This isn’t light, easy or healthy, but it is hearty, rich and satisfying. These classic dishes were the focus of ICE alum Tia Cannon’s class A Soul Food Family Dinner: Revivng the Harlem Renaissance.

Last night, she walked her class of 16 through a menu that included fried chicken, buttermilk waffles, pork chops, mac and cheese, fried corn, greens, yams, peach cobbler, banana pudding and a 7-Up cake. The students were able to learn how to recreate a little piece of Harlem in their own kitchens without heading uptown.

Not only did she prepare a huge array of satisfying soul food recipes, she also prepared a soundtrack for the class! Soul food is as much about the experience as it is the food. On the playlist was “Green Onions” by Booker T & the MG’s, “Giblet Gravy” by George Benson, “Potato Head Blues” by Louis Armstrong, “Beans and Cornbread” by Louis Jordan, “Pork Chops and Mustard Greens” by Ernie Andres & the Maxwells, “Sugar in my Bowl” by Nina Simone, and other food-centered songs paired with the soulful menu. The unique and fun playlist was a first for an ICE recreational class. The friendly, jovial atmosphere certainly made it a class to remember — truly cooking to feed the soul.

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