Observations of an Invisible Woman

Archive for the category “soul food”

Soul Food

Whole Wheat Banana Bread Recipe

I just uploaded my favourite quick ‘n easy banana bread recipe. It has been a fan favourite in my family for as long as I can remember. This super simple yet nourishing recipe boasts an almost entirely wheat recipe with dark brown sugar. The texture is a bit rougher than white flour but fills you up a lot more.

I love it warm with Natural peanut butter. My mom loves hers with just a cup of tea. I hope you’ll try it and make it apart of your family favourite recipes. Available on my Etsy site in Word document.


Tell me your thoughts. Would you like more of my healthy kitchen recipes? Any special requests?

Eating to Live

anybody know some good healthy food recipes to eat? i’m trying to eat healthy but don’t want to be a vegan lol.  —-  mstoogood4yall

With the black obesity pandemic reaching epic proportions, this post is looooong over due. When I traveled across this country, I found vegetarian shops, vegan shops and “raw” food shops. None were in our neighbourhoods. In fact, most of us do not know what to eat in order to live healthy lives. Since I come from farmers and my gardening is my pride and joy, Ms. Too Good, this is for you:

This recipe is super easy, tasty and cheap! I still make this and it tastes good every time:

6 cups cooked brown rice or black (but black is more expensive)

1 can black or red kidney beans, rinsed and drained

1 cup freshly diced tomatoes

1/2 cup red onion, chopped

2 cloves garlic, chopped

1 cayenne pepper, chopped or 1/2 tsp. cayenne powder

2 tblsp olive oil

1/2 cup fresh parsley

1/2 cup scallions

cut up cooked chicken, with no fat

Place all ingredients in a wok and stir-fry til hot. Serve with fresh parsley.

Can any of you give Ms. Too Good some healthy eating recipes that you love?

Blacks and Health: A Natural Way to Heal Part 8

Zingiber officinale

The first time I tasted ginger, my heart sped up and I began to sweat. Then, an incredible warmth overcame me and I felt wonderful. The power of ginger has had me hooked for decades. This spicy, delicious root is as old as time. Cousins of this root are cardamom and turmeric. I actually grated this and use it in my humidifier in the spring to combat my allergies.

Ginger, in the Caribbean and Africa, is dried and sweetened with honey/ molasses and sold as ginger “candy.” Pastries and teas are a BIG export using this aromatic plant, especially Jamaican Ginger Beer. The health benefits for this root are:

It thins the blood, preventing blood clots

Helps with nausea/ seasickness/ morning sickness

Lowers cholesterol

Painful Menstruation

Combats arthritis

Poor circulation or “colds hands and feet”

I make ginger iced tea year round. Here is my simple recipe:

Peppermint leaves

2 tablespoons fresh grated ginger


lemon slices

Boil about 2-3 cups water and add ginger and peppermint leaves. Let seep for 15 minutes. Add honey and fresh lemon slices when cooled.

Next Article: Cloves

Blacks and Health: The Natural Way to Heal Part 7


Did you know that garlic is actually in the onion family?

Cousins of this smelly bulb are shallots, chives and leeks. Over 7,ooo years old, this African plant/bulb has been used for its wonderful health benefit. Its hydrogen sulfide production is well-known amongst herbalists to help prevent colon, breast and prostate cancers.

Aside from being delicious in culinary cuisine, garlic protects the heart by:

Increasing blood flow to the arteries

Lowering cholesterol levels in the blood

Combating high blood pressure (when made into a tea)

Lowering blood sugar levels

When we were living in NYC, there was a little bakery that sold garlic knots. Drenched in garlic and fresh oregano, I inhaled these to the point of needing 2 showers a day! LOL!

I put garlic in just about everything I cook including fish and my stews. My friend eats garlic raw (followed by a tall drink of water) and urges us to incorporate this heart friendly bulb in all dishes.

Next article: Ginger

The Benefits of Black Rice

“Anything white is bad for the African”—Dr. Afrika

Like brown rice, black rice is full of antioxidant-rich bran, which is found in the outer layer that gets removed during the milling process to make white rice. But only black-rice contains the antioxidants known as anthocyanins, purple and reddish pigments — also found in blueberries, grapes, and acai — that have been linked to a decreased risk of heart disease and cancer, improvements in memory, and the maintenance of high blood pressure and diabetes. 

The combination of antioxidants found in black rice packs a one-two punch that could make it a particularly good food for your health. Mostly found in China, this beneficial rice isn’t well known to the black populous ..or made easily affordable:


The lowest price is $3.59 for only 15 ounces!!!

Whilst traveling across the nation, I’ve only found black rice in certain white dominated whole foods / organic stores in California.

Black rice is very good for:

1. Your kidneys

2. Your colon

3. Your liver

The three main organs blacks need for good health. Black rice is grown and shipped primarily from mainland China…which is ironic because rice comes from Africa.

Once our communities are strengthened by our own efforts, I hope one day we will have access to fresh farmer’s markets where beneficial and life-saving natural foods will be apart of our daily habits. In the meantime, please consider growing your herbs and vegetables like I do in the wintertime:

Finish this Sentence #2

If I was going to die tomorrow, my last meal would be…

I’ll go first…I’d eat a porterhouse steak, well done…garlic mashed potatoes, baby carrots and a vintage Cabernet.

What would you eat?

Fat and Black: Obesity in AmeriKlan

We need to talk. This is getting worse. And not because I love black people doesn’t mean I won’t be honest. The master, in his graciousness, gave us the food that he didn’t want. If you were a House Negro, that meant eating what he ate. Field Negroes, on the other hand, had to fend for themselves. They ate leftovers of pigs, cows, rabbits and sometimes, snakes. You know the leftovers as innards or chitterlings. We, being the Original Peoples of the Earth, used natural spices like pepper, salt(as a preservative…a post on the origin of high blood pressure to come), “bush” a.k.a. oregano, peppermint, bay leaves, etc…to make the flavour of this strange new food go down a little easier. We mastered the outdoor cookery whites claim they invented and called “barbecue” and used fruit juice and brown sugar a.k.a. “granny’s molasses” to spice up ham, chicken and alligator.

Food, being the essence of life, became imperative. And working out in the fields for 15 hours with the overseer waiting to pounce, made the black man’s tummy rumble…hard. So we ate. And ate. And ate. For blacks, food is love. When you visit granny and she has a sweet potato pie in the oven sprinkled with cinnamon, it takes you back to your childhood when she would cook on an outdoor oven. For blacks, food…is everything. And that’s the problem. Eating with a vengeance was necessary to maintain one’s strength on the plantation.

Well, we ain’t on the plantation no more. But we sure eat like it! Being pushed into the ghettos via white flight, with little resources like fresh farmer’s markets, home-grown vegetables and “granny’s bush tea” that cures damn near everything, we ate, drank and smoked what was available to us. Fast food. Liquor. Menthol cigarettes(A post yet to come on blacks and Big Tabacco).

All apart of “The Plan”

Food, like heroin, is a drug. When you try to find a job and you’re told nothing’s available, it adds to your sorrow for you know works exists…just not for you. So you eat. When you want to buy a house in your neighbourhood of choice and you’re told that there are no available homes, it adds to your disappointment, for you know a house exists…just not for you. So you eat. And when you see someone else get that promotion that you were qualified for because they are “friendly” with the boss, it adds to your stress…So you eat. And keeping things real..this economy isn’t helping our situation. All apart of “The Plan.” And please read “The Fear”

I hate statistics. They are always skewered because they are written by white men on our behalf, which is why I hardly use them. I did research last night and came up with this:

Recent reports show that substantial differences exist in obesity prevalence by race/ethnicity, and these differences vary by sex and age. For example, according to 2005–2008 data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, 51% of non-Hispanic black women aged 20 years or older were obese, compared with 43% of Mexican Americans and 33% of whites. Among females aged 2–19 years, 24% of non-Hispanic blacks, 19% of Mexican Americans, and 14% of whites were obese. Efforts are being made to reduce these disparities by focusing interventions on subgroups with high prevalence of obesity.

Source: CDC 2011

If this is indeed true…what could be some of the underlying factors?

1. Poor education about diet and exercise

2. Being “thick” is sexy and womanly in the black culture. If you’re a man, you are a “teddy bear”

3. Granny says, “Clean your plate. There are starving kids in Africa!”

4. Being naturally big-boned(not all of us but enough)

5. Just being plain lazy about exercise

6. Poverty…This is HUGE! Ever go to Foodmart and see all the fried, frozen foods that are marked 10 for $5.00 while the fresh zucchini is 3.99/lb? Ever wonder why food stamps and WIC will pay for certain items and NOT for others? Hmmmm……

7. Big business PURPOSEFULLY develops fast food joints in low-income neighbourhoods whilst wealthier white neighbourhoods ALWAYS have “natural foods” markets.

8. Food is “love”

9. ” We’ve always eaten like this in my family!”

10. “We just don’t know what else to eat!”

Guess what? Keep eating like that and diabetes, hypertension, stroke, heart attacks and congestive heart failure is just around the corner. And remember folks, we also do not have access to decent healthcare. In fact, many Coloureds in AmeriKlan are uninsured…so I dare you to tell me something isn’t “going on.” Guys, I want the best for you. But I can’t help you if you don’t help yourselves. So get off the couch, stop buying sodas or, if you MUST,  drink them in extreme moderation, take a walk, park at the furthest space and walk an extra 1/8 of a mile, if the money will allow, buy a treadmill for colder weather, drink WATER, not fruit punch ( sugar causes depression ), don’t use extra salt…in fact, just sprinkle on Mrs. Dash with fresh herbs and fresh pepper and call it a day. Fast food should be a once in-a-while treat, like ice cream. When you are finished eating, put the plate away so you don’t pick…and tell grandma you’ll only have one helping of Pecan Pie. And walk, walk, walk. Africans are natural walkers and runners…let’s get back to that.

Please pass this around to all brown people. Education matters.

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