If I Can Cook / You Know God Can

If I Can Cook / You Know God Can

by Ntozake Shange
     
 

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Acclaimed artist Ntozake Shange offers this delightfully eclectic tribute to black cuisine as a food of life that reflects the spirit and history of a people. With recipes such as "Cousin Eddie's Shark with Breadfruit" and "Collard Greens to Bring You Money," Shange instructs us in the nuances of a cuisine born on the slave ships of the Middle Passage, spiced by

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Overview

Acclaimed artist Ntozake Shange offers this delightfully eclectic tribute to black cuisine as a food of life that reflects the spirit and history of a people. With recipes such as "Cousin Eddie's Shark with Breadfruit" and "Collard Greens to Bring You Money," Shange instructs us in the nuances of a cuisine born on the slave ships of the Middle Passage, spiced by the jazz of Duke Ellington, and shared by all members of the African Diaspora. Rich with personal memories and historical insight, If I Can Cook/You Know God Can is a vivid story of the migration of a people, and the cuisine that marks their living legacy and celebration of taste.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
Infused with a down-home feel and vernacular rhythms . . . this slim, lively book stimulates and elucidates, and is well worth chewing on.—Luis H. Francia, The Village Voice

"Shange stirs and simmers the soul and moves the reader/eater/cook to rethink every morsel of Pan-African history, personal celebration, and global pain that enters our lives when we gather around her magical hearth to laugh, to cry—but most indispensably—to eat."—Edwidge Danticat, author of The Farming of Bones

"This culinary memoir . . . is as valuable for its inspirational and factual nuggets as it is for its unusual recipes. . . . Soul-nourishing."—Carmela Ciuraru, Entertainment Weekly

"A captivating collection of African-American food memories, meditations and recipes." —Kathy Martin, Miami Herald

"Shange achieves . . . revolutionary splendor. She wraps history and legend and recipes and folklore around one big roti . . . makes a gumbo out of memories and laughter and recipes and black vernacular . . . throws spicy metaphors into recipes that have traveled from Africa and Brazil and the Caribbean and Brixton, England."—American Visions

"A fervent, richly impassioned chronicle of African American experience."—Booklist

Library Journal
With lyrical originality and musical patois, playwright, novelist, and poet Shange (Liliane: Resurrection of the Daughter, LJ 11/15/94) intertwines the history and food of the "African Diaspora" into a beautiful little book in the tradition of M.F.K. Fisher. This collection of essaysconversations might be more accuratetakes the reader to the tables of African Americans; the kitchens of Nicaragua, London, Barbados, and Brazil; and the feasts of Africa. Proud tradition plays an important role here, but don't overlook the book's value for the chef. Easy-to-follow recipes for "collards to bring you money," rack of lamb, hominy, feijoada, barbecue, gumbo, okra, and couscous are among the 34 exotic dishes, and most of the ingredientsexcept maybe turtle eggsare readily available. Herein is also contained the coveted secret of determining a watermelon's ripeness! An inexpensive cookbook with a lot of class.Wendy Miller, Lexington P.L., Ky.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780807072417
Publisher:
Beacon
Publication date:
01/28/1999
Series:
Bluestreak Series
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
113
Product dimensions:
5.40(w) x 8.43(h) x 0.31(d)

What People are saying about this

Edwidge Danticat
...as in all her brilliant works, Ntozake Shange stirs and simmers the soul and moves the reader/eater/cook to rethink every morsel of Pan-African history, personal celebration, and global pain which enter our lives when we gather around her magical hearth to laugh, to cry—but most indispensably—to eat. (Edwidge Danticat, author of Krik? Krak!)

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