At Bubby’s, Black History Month is a celebration of African-American contributions to the American table. As with American music, it is hard to know where this contribution begins or ends; it is everywhere, sometimes obvious (as with barbecue), sometimes subtle or controversial (clam chowder, perhaps.) Black influences on American food and cooking are expressed through foods that were brought from Africa or cultivated in North America largely be African slaves and their descendants (sesame, okra), and cooking techniques that they added to the American repertoire (deep frying). It is also true that during the long decades of Jim Crow segregation, Black Americans largely defined the standards and expectations for restaurant food in the US.
Bubby’s observance of Black History Month will culminate with a special dinner on February 24th designed to pleasurably illustrate, foods, methods and styles that might best represent African-American foodways and how they have shaped the American table we all share.
The Dinner itself will be an informal family-style gathering, with lots of conversation about culture, history and what we’re eating. Present at the dinner will be author and scholar LaShonda Barnett and other people who have given this subject a lot of thought. The menu will include chitterlings, bennecake pone, Hoppin’ John, fried catfish, greens and pot likker, chow chow, dark gumbo, fried okra and sweet potato pie. Prix fixe for the event is $65 and these menu items will be available to regular diners as a la carte dinner specials on February 24th.