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  • 10 BEST PODCASTS OF 2021
  • New York Times
  • BEST FOOD PODCAST
  • James Beard Awards
  • Webby Awards

The Table Freda Built

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Jun 06, 2022
The Table Freda Built
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Today ahead of Juneteenth we’re launching “By Us For Everyone,” a three-part series about how Black American food is represented in media, and how those portrayals change when Black people are in charge of them. In the 1940s and ‘50s, Ebony was one of the only magazines created by Black people that spoke directly to Black people. It showed Black Americans falling in love, playing sports, dressing in style, gathering together – and eating. Freda DeKnight was the magazine’s first food editor, publishing recipes that were international and sophisticated, challenging the stereotype that Black American food was limited to soul food. Dan speaks with historian Donna Battle Pierce about Freda’s legacy, then meets Charla Draper, another Ebony food editor, at the Ebony test kitchen. After sitting unused for more than a decade, the kitchen and its original 1970s appliances have been restored and transported to New York for a new exhibit by the Museum of Food and Drink.

The Sporkful production team includes Dan Pashman, Emma Morgenstern, Andres O'Hara, Johanna Mayer, Tracey Samuelson, and Jared O'Connell, with editing help this week from Oluwakemi Aladesuyi, Hali Bey Ramdene, and Alexis Williams.

Interstitial music in this episode by Black Label Music:

  • "Twenty 99" by Erick Anderson
  • "Birthday Party" by Kenneth J. Brahmstedt
  • "Lucky Strike" by Erick Anderson
  • "Pong" by Kenneth J. Brahmstedt
  • "Can You Dig It" by Cullen Fitzpatrick
  • "Trippin" by Erick Anderson
  • "Happy Jackson" by Kenneth J. Brahmstedt

Photo courtesy of Museum of Food and Drink.

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