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Christmas Traditions from 12 Years A Slave

Southern Barbecue Scene, by Horace Bradley, published in Harper's Weekly
The movie Twelve Years a Slave, based on Solomon Northup's autobiography, has been nominated for a number of prestigious movie awards. The book describes the horrors of slavery and the agency of enslaved people. It also documents 19th century Louisiana food traditions.  For example, around Christmas a wealthy planter hosted a barbecue for as much as “three to five hundred” slaves (and their owners) “from neighboring plantations to join his own on the occasion,” Northup tells us. A former slave in Louisiana, he explains they would come “on foot, in carts, on horseback, on mules, riding double and triple,” for the food and fellowship around a large table “spread in the open air, and loaded with varieties of meat and piles of vegetables.” Open pit barbecued meats cooked “in the shade of wide branching trees” proved to be the main culinary attraction of these rural integrated Christmas suppers. Slaves dug a pit and fill it with wood “burned until it is filled with glowing coals, over which chickens, ducks, turkeys, pigs, and not [in]frequently the entire body of a wild ox [were] roasted.” 

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More Barbecue Stories and Recipes: http://www.foodasalens.com/search?q=barbecue

Food History And Twelve Years A Slave: http://www.foodasalens.com/search?q=Solomon

Twelve Years A Slave Ebook: http://docsouth.unc.edu/fpn/northup/northup.html

Food, Slavery and Manumission: http://www.foodasalens.com/search?q=manumission

Henry Louis Gates on 12 Years a Slave: [Listen Now 37 min 52 sec] http://www.wnyc.org/story/henry-louis-gates-jr/?utm_source=showpage&utm_media=treatment&utm_campaign=featured&utm_content=item3

Movie Trailer, 12 Years a Slave: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iiw1cYXQw4g

Christmas Food Traditions: [Watch Now 4 min 20 sec] http://www.foodasalens.com/2013/12/christmas-food-traditions.html?spref=tw

Christmas Food Traditions in the UK

Christmas Food Traditions