Michael Twitty is a prominent culinary and cultural historian who interprets the experiences of enslaved African Americans through food and its preparation. His cooking demonstration explores the West and Central African influences on Jefferson’s table. Participants will sample the flavors of Africa on the Mountaintop.
Culinary and Cultural Historian
Michael W. Twitty is a noted culinary and cultural historian who interprets the experiences of enslaved African Americans through food and its preparation. He created Afroculinaria.com, the first blog devoted to African American historic foodways and their legacy, and was honored by FirstWeFeast.com as one of twenty greatest food bloggers of all time. He has appeared on Bizarre Foods America with Andrew Zimmern, Many Rivers to Cross with Dr. Henry Louis Gates, and has lectured to more than 250 groups including at Yale, Oxford and Carnegie Mellon Universities, Colonial Williamsburg, and the Smithsonian Folklife Festival. Michael has been invited to speak around the world, from the MAD Symposium in Copenhagen to the Guardian Festival of Ideas in London to film festivals in Jerusalem, all on culinary justice and the African American impact on Southern foodways. His work has been featured in many publications and websites including Ebony, The Guardian, Eater.com and NPR’s Codeswitch blog. He has appeared on NPR on a number of occasions including being interviewed on the acclaimed food program, The Splendid Table. He has also served as a judge for the James Beard Awards and is a Smith fellow with the Southern Foodways Alliance and has most recently been named a TED fellow and speaker. He was recently named one of “Fifty People Changing the South” by Southern Living and one of the “Five Cheftavists to Watch” by TakePart.Com. HarperCollins will release Twitty’s first major book in 2017: The Cooking Gene won the 2018 James Beard Award for best writing, as well as book of the year.