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African American Food: History, Culture, and Recipes

The African-American food history is rich and diverse. African-Americans were introduced to a myriad of foods by the Africans who were kidnapped and forced into slavery in the Americas. This introduction of new food cultures has led to the development of a variety of dishes that are now considered to be staples in the African-American cuisine.

The first thing you need to know about African-American food is how it’s been influenced by other cultures. The most notable influence would be from Africa because many African slaves brought their knowledge of various agricultural techniques with them to America. These techniques helped America produce things like rice, okra, eggplant, yams, watermelon and banana which makes up some of the main ingredients found in today’s recipes for an African American dish such as gumbo or jambalaya. Another cultural group that has influenced American dishes is Native Americans who taught early slaves about cornmeal, pecans and wild