Summer 2017
Summer Greetings! 
We are pleased to send you our Summer Quarterly newsletter, and also hope you have lots of news to share with us! 
A Taste of African Heritage Updates
We hope everyone is enjoying sun-filled days and good food with family and friends because that’s what summer is all about! The last few months have been a very busy time for the Oldways African Heritage & Health Program Managers, teachers, Ambassadors, and students. Here are some highlights:  

Speaking Events & Train the Traine

In June, Program Manager Sade Anderson traveled to New York, where she spoke to a panel at the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of all Forms of Racial Discrimination about A Taste of African Heritage cooking program, African American health and food insecurity. She also hosted a "Train the Trainer" live teacher seminar in the city to launch faith-based NYC ATOAH partnerships. Oldways is hosting two upcoming "Train the Trainer" seminars for folks interested in teaching ATOAH: 

  • Washington, D.C. "Train the Trainer" on Saturday, August 10, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the  Peoples Congregational Church. Please contact Sade Anderson to learn more.

  • Chicago "Train the Trainer" on Saturday, November 11 at St. Ailbe Catholic  Church.
    contact Johnisha Levi to learn more. 

Class Site Directory 

We are pleased to announce that we now have an  online class directory ! You can easily find a class in your city and contact the teacher directly to secure a spot in an upcoming ATOAH series.

Staff Update and Ambassador Expansion 
Johnisha Levi is now serving as a new co-Program Manager alongside Sade, as the Oldways African Heritage & Health Program is growing by leaps and bounds. Additionally, we are thrilled to add six new passionate and skilled Ambassadors to the Oldways Ambassador Network! You can find out more about them and their community work here.

ATOAH Children's Curriculum 

Due to popular demand, we are creating an ATOAH children’s curriculum appropriate for ages 8 to 12! We plan to have it printed and ready to pilot in the fall of 2017. Please contact Johnisha if you are interested in teaching children ATOAH classes.   

Photo: ATOAH instructor Vicki Mines (right) and assistant Alyssa Mills (left) at the Belfield Recreation Center in Philadelphia, PA. 
African Heritage & Health Study
Spices & Herbs Can Improve Healthy Diet & Eating Attitude  

A research study introduced African American teens in Baltimore, Maryland to "Spice MyPlate," a six-week nutrition education curriculum focusing on 12 spices and herbs. Students learned about the properties of the different herbs and spices, as well as how to use them in recipes. The study found that participants in the Spice MyPlate curriculum improved their diet quality by eating more whole grains and lean protein. Cooking with spices and herbs also improved their attitudes about consuming vegetables and whole grains. The Oldways African Heritage & Health Program encourages everyone to explore African heritage spices and herbs such as grains of paradise (a peppery spice native to West Africa), berebere, and thyme. Spices and herbs can not only add antioxidants to your meals, but also contribute flavor and  excitement to any dish! Explore the world of  herbs and spices and see what new dishes you can create. 

Read the full study here 

The Chef's Corner
Chef Akhi

Chef Ahki, student of the famous Dr. Sebi, is CEO of Delicious Indigenous Foods. She is a celebrity chef, natural foods activist, and nutritional counselor. Raised by four generations of medicine women in her native Oklahoma, Ahki uses and promotes seasonal, organic, fresh (naturally occurring) fruits and vegetables to create what she calls living, healthy recipes. Chef Ahki's first cookbook Electric: A Modern Guide to Non-Hybrid & Wild Foods introduces people to non-hybrid foods (naturally occurring foods) and wild/foraged foods, both of which have a rich history in African heritage cuisine. Ahki’s recipes include ancient grain salads, green juices, lettuce wraps, and more! She calls her recipes "next level vegan."  

Photo Credit:
The Spice Rack 

Turmeric, which is grown in the tropics, brings color to curry powder, mustard, butter, cheese, and sometimes clothes! Often, you’ll see it in its dried form, but if you buy it fresh, look for a knobby stem that resembles ginger—it’s part of the same family. Unlike the pale yellow interior of ginger, the interior of turmeric is a very warm orange. Turmeric can be used in both savory and sweet dishes. You can try it fresh in A Taste of African Heritage recipes such as Spicy Chickpeas or Quinoa with Ginger and Carrots
What We're Reading . . . 
"Each vegetable has its own timing; each smell and sound is part of your internal timer . . . There is a relationship you develop with your food that is built on practice and experience, but also on the feeling that you bring to your pots. They know you because pots have souls–at least that's what I'm told. Pots are to African and African Diaspora mythology what bottles are to genies in the Middle East. They are like shells for hermit crabs–the pots contain wisdom and the dead–and if you don't treat them right you might just watch one run off down the road." This is just one of the powerful excerpts from The Cooking Gene: A Journey Through African-American Culinary History in the Old South . Culinary historian and food blogger Michael Twitty not only writes the important, untold story of Southern food, exploring its deep African roots; he also takes readers through a very personal journey as he travels the South, uncovers his own ancestry, and cooks the foods that his ancestors ate using original techniques and tools. ATOAH Advisor Tambra Raye Stevenson contributed to this project, and ATOAH Ambassador Adante Hart helped to edit and organize the chapters. 

Any books, blogs, or articles that you'd like to share with us? Please post them on our  Facebook page
African Heritage Dine-Around-Town 
Oldways knows that one of the easiest ways to dine out healthfully is to choose cultural restaurants that serve traditional world cuisines. Whether African, Caribbean, Indian, or Japanese, cultural restaurants offer the widest variety of vegetables, beans, whole grains, meats, and spices prepared in deliciously dynamic ways. 

Every newsletter edition, we put the spotlight on three African heritage restaurants from our  Dine-Around-Town  list, describing the traditional features of their menus and perhaps inspiring you to try making some of these cultural dishes at home. This season we are  featuring Ghanaian restaurants.   

Bukom Cafe
Washington, D.C. 
Bukom has been a staple in D.C. since the early 1990s. The Washington Post recently spotlighted it along with other West African restaurants as an overlooked gem. Bukom is known for its delicious Ghanaian dishes. Start your meal with an appetizer of moi moi (black-eyed peas blended with tomato sauce, corned beef, and hard-boiled eggs), fish soup, or meat pie. For your entrée, try whole-fried red snapper served with plantains, rice and salad, chicken yassa (baked chicken marinated in onions and spices), or cassava leaf-wrapped beef. While you eat, enjoy live reggae and African beats. End your meal with Bukom’s own African sweet pies (made with African fruit purées), ice cream, chocolate truffles, or rum cake. 
Photo by By Mac-Jordan Degadjor at Wikimedia Commons, CC BY 2.0. 

Appioo Bar & Grill 
Washington, D.C. 
The Washington Post also recommends you try Appioo! Chef Matey, whose brother owns Bukom, is also cooking up authentic Ghanaian staples on his menu. Highlights include a krakro ( plantain  dumplings served with black-eyed peas), jollof rice with fish, beef, chicken, oxtail, or goat, as well as peanut butter stew similar to ATOAH favorite  mafe spiced with scotch bonnet peppers. Like Bukom, Appioo hosts live music, beer, wine, and cocktails. 
Photo from Appioo Bar & Grill

Visit Appioo Bar & Grill's website

Accra Restaurant
New York, New York 
Begin a meal at Harlem’s Accra Restaurant with appetizers such as kelewele (plantains fried in spices) or suya (African beef satay or skewers rubbed in suya pepper spice blend). Customers' favorite entrees include their egusi (melon-seed soup), jollof, and kenkey (similar to tamales) with fish. The restaurant is the only one in Harlem that offers authentic fufu! You can also try their second location in the Bronx.
Photo by DromoTetteh at Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA 4.0 

Visit Accra Restaurant's Facebook page
Oldways African Heritage Recipes 
The most powerful call to action to improve the health of African American families and communities is to get cooking! To help families put the  African Heritage Diet Pyramid  on their plate, here are three delicious, healthy recipes that take their cues from African roots. 

Click on the title below to go to the Oldways recipe.
Banana Millet Breakfast Porridge
Millet is an important African heritage grain that can be eaten at every meal. This porridge combines millet with a favorite combination of flavors: banana, nut butter, and cinnamon. It's a good way to keep your battery charged for the day!

Click here for the recipe
Oldways Okra & Corn
You don’t always have to enjoy okra in stew; in a matter of minutes, you can sauté it with fresh or frozen corn for a quick weekday side. Give it a try!

Cashew Quinoa
Cashews and quinoa come together for a hearty and flavorful side dish that pairs well with your favorite cooked greens or stew. 

Click here for the recipe
The work of the African Heritage and Health Program would not be possible without the generous support of the Walmart Foundation. 

Sade Anderson
Program Manger & African Diaspora Specialist

Johnisha Levi
Program Manager

"I tell people all the time, you have to be in love with that pot. You have to put all your love in that pot. If you're in a hurry, just eat your sandwich and go. Don't even start cooking, because you can't do anything well in a hurry." - Chef Leah Chase