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Thiam, who was born in Dakar, now lives in Brooklyn, NY, where he owns two restaurants, Yolele and Grand Dakar, and a catering business. He explains that the expression Yolele! is similar to the Creole saying, "Laissez les bon temps rouler" (Let the good times roll) and that in many ways Louisiana's Creole culture and cuisine are similar to those of his native western Africa. The food and ambiance of Dakar, the capital of Senegal, reflect both African and foreign influences, including the early Portuguese colonists and Vietnamese immigrants. Thiam, who also teaches cooking, presents 75 Senegalese recipes, including favorite street foods. The chapter "The Middle Passage" focuses on African dishes that became the basis of American Southern specialties, originally prepared by slave cooks. One of few books on the topic, this is recommended for all collections on African cookery.