Conjurin' In the Kitchen: Alison Saar's Recipes for Trouble

Conjurin' In the Kitchen: Alison Saar's Recipes for Trouble

"CONJURIN' IN THE KITCHEN

is about feel more than measurement

the syncopation of ingredients is essential

improvisation strongly encouraged"

– Alison Saar

Cooking is more than putting together a list of ingredients and following a specific recipe. It is the gathering of stories – where ingredients originated from, how they got here, who grew them (historically and present day), and the cultural context of how we learned how to use/cook them. For years, centuries even, many of these stories have been overlooked or erased from the conversation. However, over the last decade, and especially in the last few years, we have been encouraged by and embrace the shift in the whose voices are speaking out from the bookshelves and kitchens – calling for change and getting into good trouble.

Curated by our creative director B.Evy-Marie Harris, next week's menu features summery adaptations of Alison Saar's Recipes for Trouble alongside several recipes from Dr. Jessica B. Harris, whom you may have watched on the recently released Netflix series based on her book, High on the Hog. This menu is not only a preamble to Juneteenth*, but a digestible reflection on where we were as a community this time last year – an invitation to pause and plan how we can grow, learn and gather together for change.

Order deadline 5pm, Monday, June 7th for weekend delivery.

*Juneteenth is celebrated on June 19th to commemorated the emancipation of enslaved people in the US. The holiday was first celebrated in Texas, where on that date in 1865, slaves were finally declared free, three years after the 1862 Emancipation Proclamation.



Explore Our New Supper Kits


Borrowing words from Dr. Jessica B. Harris, okra is the connector. Know as okrum in Twi, or quin gumbo in Bantu, okra was brought from Africa to the Americas by slaves. Next weekend's Sunday Supper Kit gives you the opportunity to choose your okra experience. Alison Saar's Aunt Jai's Gumbo shares ingredients with Dr. Jessica B. Harris's Fried Chicken with Succotash – giving you both guidance and creative license to feel your way thru the kitchen and conjure something delicious for you and your household. For dessert – watermelon. If making Alison's gumbo, check your pantry for flour, bay leaf, cayenne pepper, stock, hot sauce, rice, salt and pepper. If making Dr. Jessica B. Harris's fried chicken and succotash, check your pantry for hot pepper, cornmeal, salt and pepper.

The Vegetarian Supper Kit includes the ingredients for a summery adaptation of Alison's Hoppin' John with Good Money Greens and Black Skillet Cornbread featuring Tehachapi Grain cornmeal and Koda Farms Kokuho Rose rice. Check your pantry for flour, sugar, butter, cumin, hot sauce, baking powder, vegetable stock, smoked paprika (optional), salt and pepper.

Image: Alison Saar's Sorrow's Kitchen, 2020.

And for nights tight on time...

Our easy to make enjoy Weeknight Supper Kit features Woon's Homestyle Chewy Noodles with Spread the Love peanut butter, lime, garic, ginger, carrots, green onion, broccoli leaves, cilantro and hot peppers. Check your pantry for soy sauce.

Plan a summery picnic, backyard soirée (or get cozy and watch a movie) and enjoy the Wine & Grazing Board Supper Kit featuring:

  • J.Brix Stay in Bed Red

  • Bivalve Mendoca Cheese

  • CA Coast Naturals Olives

  • Manzanita Manor Chocolate Covered Walnuts

  • Effie's Oatcakes

  • Scout Garden Herb Pesto Tuna

  • and La Quercia Prosciutto Americano

The Vegetarian Wine & Grazing Board Supper Kit skips the charcuterie and conserva but includes the option to add hummus or a spread.

A LA CArte

This week's featured a la carte selections are inspired by the red beverages and foods enjoyed during Juneteenth. Why red? Culinary Historian Micheal Twitty says in his Afroculinaria essay Terroir Noire: African American Foodways in Slavery, Texas, "The practice of eating red foods—red cake, barbecue, punch and fruit– may owe its existence to the enslaved Yoruba and Kongo brought to Texas in the 19th century. For both of these cultures the color red is the embodiment of spiritual power and transformation."



We're busy in the kitchen making the sorrel tea found in Toni Tipton-Martin's cookbook Jubilee using Masienda dried hibiscus (included in next weekend's Narrative Provisions box finale) and a few of the spices in our pantry. Add some mint, ginger, and citrus for a refreshing and delicious beverage!



Enjoy refreshing watermelon in salads, sorbets, or just sliced and enjoyed on your next picnic.



Due to your amazing and delighful response, Harry's Berries Mara de Bois strawberries are available for your indulgent snacking pleasure.

New Wine and a Suggested Reading List

We are excited for the return of the refreshing collaboration between Jenny & Francois and Chris Christensen of Bodkin wine. Pop open a bottle of their lightly hazy, unfiltered Sauvignon Blanc for enjoy delicious notes of gooseberry and citrus while perusing pages from our suggested reading list (below).



About: Chris Christensen never thought winemaking was an actual career path that people who weren’t born into a winery or vineyard could pursue, until he went on a wine tasting trip to the Sonoma Valley his Junior year at Stanford. From then on he was hooked on the idea of working at a winery. And here he still is, making wine. As an African American vintner, Chris works to promote diversity and inclusion in the wine industry through speaking engagements, podcasts and mentorship opportunities for aspiring vintners and winery owners.

Suggested Reading List

On Juneteenth, Annette Gordon-Reid

High on the Hog, Dr. Jessica B. Harris

The Cooking Gene, Michael W. Twitty

Barracoon, Zora Neale Hurston

We are Each Other's Harvest Natalie Baszile

Claudia Rankin, Citizen

Voyage of The Sable Venus, Robin Coste Lewis

Whetstone

For the Culture

Jubilee, Toni Tipton-Martin

Narrative Provisions Boxes (Exclusive to current subscribers)

After eleven years, we are retiring our weekly Narrative Provisions boxes. Our upcoming "Conjurin' In the Kitchen: Alison Saar's Recipes for Trouble" menu is our grand finale. Read our founder's letter about why were are making these changes here.



Our Narrative Provisions boxes are filled with pasture-raised meat & eggs, curated pantry items, and local produce to make our featured recipes, but you'll need to check your pantry for these few items found HERE.

Large Omnivore Narrative Provisions Featured Recipes:


  • Buttermilk Fried Chicken with Collard Slaw and Cornbread

  • Choose your own experience (Aunt Jai's Gumbo or Sausages & Succotash)

  • Chicken with Sweet Potatoes & Plantain

  • Hoppin' John Grain bowl with Good Money Greens-inspired salad

  • "Put Your Foot In It" Sweet Potato Pie

  • Juneteenth Tea

Featured Ingredients:


  • Electric City Butcher Andouille Sausage

  • Pasturebird Chicken Leg Quarters (Wings for Small Omnivore)*

  • Keller Crafted Bacon*

  • Alexandre Family Farm Eggs

  • Fresh Squeezed Orange Juice

  • Diaspora Co. Nutmeg

  • Masienda Hibiscus*

  • Koda Farms Kokuho Rose Rice*

  • Blackeyed Peas*

  • Tehachapi Grain Project Cornmeal*

  • Straus Buttermilk

  • and locally sourced produce for the above recipes*

*Included in Small Omnivore Narrative Provisions Boxes.

Large Vegetarian Narrative Provisions Featured Recipes:


  • Choose your own experience (Aunt Jai's Gumbo or Sausages & Succotash)

  • Hoppin' John Grain bowl with Good Money Greens-inspired salad

  • Collard Slaw & Cornbread

  • "Put Your Foot In It" Sweet Potato Pie

  • Juneteenth Tea

Featured Ingredients:


  • Alexandre Family Farm Eggs

  • Fresh Squeezed Orange Juice

  • Diaspora Co. Nutmeg

  • Masienda Hibiscus*

  • Koda Farms Kokuho Rose Rice*

  • Blackeyed Peas*

  • Tehachapi Grain Project Cornmeal*

  • Straus Buttermilk

  • and locally sourced produce for the above recipes*

*Included in Small Vegetarian Narrative Provisions Boxes.

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