Saturday is Juneteenth

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It’s Juneteenth, or Freedom Day in the United States, but it has relevance everywhere.

Here is column from last Juneteenth in which I and Julianne Hazlewood, who was sitting in for Craig Norris, spoke with Waterloo Region chef (and excellent singer!) Derek Hines about what the date signifies.

(As an interesting sidebar, check out the Netflix series, High on the Hog: How African American Cuisine Transformed America.)


Julianne Hazlewood: Derek, Juneteenth dates to 1865. What is its significance?

Derek Hines: It was the date the last state in the Union recognized the Emancipation Proclamation. Two years after Lincoln freed the slaves, the news got to Texas.

You can imagine how excited they were to learn they were actually free. It’s known in the south as Black Independence Day.

JH: And what are the food links in that long history?

DH: That’s interesting. It happened the way a lot of food things happened to people. People come from a place and they bring what they can with them.

When they can’t find what they normally cook with, they substitute what they can find. That’s certainly true of slave cuisine that’s sparked an entire food movement in the states.

For more, please visit cbc-kw.

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