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On today's episode of A Taste of the Past, host Linda Pelaccio talks about the huge craze that surrounds fried foods: fried chicken! The guest on today's show is Michael Twitty, culinary historian of African and African American foods. What makes each fried chicken dish so special? Learn more about the history behind fried chicken, it's many cultural influences, and what truly makes fried chicken the comfort food for so many. Also find out about Michael's latest project, The Cooking Gene, which aims to promote greater awareness of African American contributions to the development of Southern cuisine, promote community service and development, support the local economies of Southern communities and African American food producers, and encourage a dialogue that leads to racial reconciliation and healing in communities whose history and culture is a legacy of slavery and the slave trade. Lastly, Tonya Hopkins, The Food Griot, talks about Edna Lewis, and how she has inspired American cuisine today. Also listen to a recent panel at the New School, discussing Chef Edna Lewis at the link below. (http://youtu.be/J0A3Ba9OhtA) This program has been sponsored by S. Wallace Edwards & Sons

"When I make chicken, for me it's always a transformative, transcendent and ritual experience." [8:43]

"That's the thing that excites me. We just don't tell these stories enough." [22:35]

-- Michael Twitty on A Taste of the Past

"Griot means storyteller. I see the world through the lens of food, and therefore I am food storyteller, or the food griot. [25:10]"

-- Tonya Hopkins on A Taste of the Past


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50 years ago, 1964 The Civil Rights Act was passed. Nicole Taylor, who hosted 162 episodes of Hot Grease from 2009-2013 on Heritage Radio Network, is producing a documentary remembering how the civil rights movement played out in Athens, GA specifically through the story of the Varsity protests.

By Jack Inslee

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