When it comes to food, I’m a girl who’ll try anything.
Since I was a kid food has been a major theme in my life. I enjoy all types of food and rarely anything edible makes me flinch. I grew up eating pig feet, chitterlings’, turkey necks, chicken feet, and a whole bunch more things you can only get from the international store these days.
I love foods and cuisine from all around the world, but my heart will always belong to soul food.
Soul food is a mix of flavors spices and cooking techniques that are derived from African cuisine across the diaspora. I find it amazing how although most cultural identities and habits of African-American slaves were strategically erased, banned ,or diminished, food is one that has stood the test of time. African-American Soul food is a combination of cooking techniques and recipes (or lack there of) that were developed out of a scarcity, and memory.
I mean out of nothing comes these delicious flavorful and perfectly executed meals, without the availability of measuring cups, cooking books, or even a decent cut of meat.
Then comes the lack of time. With demanding work schedules (understatement of the century I know) there was no time to cook 4 course meals for their own families so instead, they stewed pots of meats, wild grown greens, and herbs and spices from their own gardens.
I can go to my grandmother’s house today and there will probably be a pot going with some slow cooked, beans, or greens, or even a pot of chicken feet and noodles.
This slow one pot method of cooking ends up producing the most flavorful and tender meats, vegetables, and beans.
Everyone loves food and however dim your day may be you can bring a family together over a good meal. We can all rejoice in a pot of delicious flavors. That’s what soul food means to me.
Today I’m bringing you one of those scrap meat meals. However if you make this dish you will be begin to see that when executed appropriately those scrap meats can be just as delicious as the “good” cuts.
Neck bones are dirt cheap, they’re flavorful, but they don’t have a great amount of actual meat on the bone. So they are perfect for adding flavor to a pot of greens, or beans.
Today however I want to show you how to make them for your main course. The tenderness and flavor of the meat will certainly make you want more but for as cheap as they cost you can buy a few more packs and go to town.
I find this technique to produce the juiciest and most tender meat, that will render a fall off the bone delicious dinner.
Wash and Season generously with Salt and Pepper.
Add one chopped onion and 1 chopped celery stalk for two pounds of neck bones.
Add other seasonings desired. I used dried parsley, rubbed sage, and garlic salt.
Tightly wrap in aluminum foil and bake on 325° for 2 1/2 hours.
Take aluminum foil off of baking dish.
Baste meat with juices from the dish.
Turn oven up to 375° and bake uncovered for 30 more minutes.
- 2 Lbs Neck Bones
- Mix of herbs and spices ( I used rubbed sage, dry parsley, and garlic salt)
- 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1 stalk of celery chopped
- 1 small onion chopped
- Preheat oven 325
- Place neck bones, onions, and celery in baking dish.
- Season with all spices and liberal amount of salt.
- Pour in apple cider vinegar around the sides into the dish.
- Cover tightly with aluminum foil.
- Bake for 2 1/2 hours.
- Take aluminum foil off baking dish.
- baste the meat with int's juices.
- Turn oven up to 375 and bake uncovered for another 30 minutes.