SoulCreole: Nicole's First Book

$1,790 of $2,000 goal

Raised by 48 people in 37 months

WHY IS THIS WORK IMPORTANT?

This project seeks to preserve and perhaps resurrect a dying facet of modern life: our deep connection to the foods that are a vital part of our identity, our history, our experiences and our cultural future.

More than sentimental reminiscences or cliched celebrations of "creole" or "soul" food, SoulCreole: The Cookbook, is a story of finding God in the quiet boil of rice; of enjoying the richest pleasures in the humblest ingredients; and, of recognizing food's sacred ability to facilitate healing, evolution and empowerment.

WHAT AM I DOING?

I am currently working on a collection of foodways nonfiction and photography that delves into the sophistication and earthiness of southern cooking, especially in sustaining and connecting African American families.

The book will deal specifically with the food, family and culture of my Northern Mississippi and Southern Louisiana roots, in the style of Edna Lewis’s “The Taste of Country Cooking”, an American classic. 

My mother’s family hails from the Mississippi Delta, where they were doing farm-to-table long before it was cool or hip. My father’s family is centered in Creole Louisiana, specifically New Orleans and its environs, and the food of that region is as much a part of me as my last name.

I will be traveling to other cities and towns (Opelousas, Lafayette and Lake Charles...perhaps others as time and resources permit), as well, to include stories of families there.

I want to tell this story and hope to do it justice.

WHO AM I? 

I am a native New Orleanian, educated in the public schools of Orleans and Jefferson parishes. I hold a degree in Broadcast Journalism from Louisiana State University (1991).

I am a writer who works part time for a local nonprofit organization that focuses on afterschool enrichment for underserved children and families. One of our many projects is the "ADVENTures in Reading!" Literacy Initiative, where notable Louisianans read to our students from books by Louisiana authors.

I have been writing poetry for three decades. I have come to flash nonfiction over the past ten years or so. The two forms, for me, have been a natural set of siblings: poetry arrives and communicates in an “inspired instant”, a lightning bolt of consciousness, whereas flash nonfiction takes that same jolt of experience and communicates with burning urgency a small tableau of human nature, exploration and meaning.

HOW WILL THE MONEY BE USED?

The funds raised through GoFundMe would help to cover the costs of recipe development, gasoline, lodging, internet access in remote places (such as the bayou communities of Davant and St. Sophie, LA), transcription of interviews and a refurbished laptop. 

Thank you, most sincerely, for considering me and my work.

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At a time when crucial aspects of the cultural fabric of our nation seems to be coming apart, SoulCreole: The Cookbook seeks to bring us back together, back to our roots and back to the table.

More than sentimental reminiscences or clichéd celebrations of "creole" or "soul" food, my project is the story of finding God in the quiet boil of rice; of enjoying the richest pleasures in the humblest ingredients; and, of recognizing food's sacred ability to facilitate healing, evolution and empowerment.

To those who have contributed, thank you again. To those who haven't yet, I hope that you will consider helping to sponsor this worthy endeavor.

Most sincerely,

Nicole
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Raquel! Thank you, my sister. You have been an inspiration. And your support is priceless.
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Kale.
Overused, overdone and overexposed.
And most folks are over it.

But kale doesn’t have to be the enemy. This potent green can be used strategically and stealthily to increase the nutritional value of many dishes.
Red Potatoes with Kale and Bacon.
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One of my favorite stories about Ma-Mee, my paternal grandmother, is how she made her bread pudding. Always rich and sweet and filled with fruit and raisins, her children fought over the corner pieces to get to the delectable browned crust. She'd buy a couple of loaves of local French bread (Binder’s or Leidenheimer, most likely), and place them on top of the refrigerator for a couple days to get stale.

As a child, I never liked bread pudding. The idea of moist bread and raisins (yuck!) grossed me out, so I avoided it. Until tonight.

Tonight I made my first bread pudding, marshalling the best ingredients and tips from several heirloom recipes and incorporating Ma-Mee’s tradition of adding lots of fruit and butter. Mine, like hers, also uses French baguette bread. For the sauce, in place of whiskey, bourbon or rum, I used the delightful DiSaronno liqueur.
Bread Pudding with DiSaronno Sauce.
Bread Pudding with DiSaronno Sauce.
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Read a Previous Update
Danielle Barrois Moses
37 months ago

Congrats Soror!!!

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$1,790 of $2,000 goal

Raised by 48 people in 37 months
Created November 11, 2015
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SR
$50
Steve&Tonya Rayford
14 months ago

Can't wait to get the book! We love & support you, Congrats!!

JS
$30
Judith Smalls
14 months ago

You are such a talented writer, so intellectual with such a warm spirit. Looking forward to reading whatever you write Soror !

$200
Anonymous
14 months ago
LC
$50
Latonia Cooper
26 months ago
1
1

Love your positive and uplifting spirit! You have contributed to my growth over the past couple of years in ways you will never know. Keep doing you...your doing an amazing job!

PA
$25
Phaedra Abbott
26 months ago
1
1

Love you and so very proud to support you!

Danielle Barrois Moses
37 months ago

Congrats Soror!!!

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