{related_entries id="evnt_auth_1"}

{related_entries id="evnt_auth_1"} {/related_entries}

Hercules and Hemmings – The Presidents’ Slave Chefs

Saturday 29 March 2014

1 Hour


{related_entries id="evnt_loca"}Hercules and Hemmings – The Presidents’ Slave Chefs{/related_entries}



Ticket price

Food writer Dr Jessica B. Harris discusses Hercules and James Hemmings, 18th-century enslaved African-American chefs who worked for two of the American founding fathers in the early years of the country’s history. One oversaw George Washington’s kitchen and created menus for the first president and the country’s original notables. The other trained in Paris, cooked for Thomas Jefferson, America’s premier bec fin, and refused the position of White House chef. One requested and was given his freedom, the other escaped. Their conjoined stories give an illuminating picture of another aspect of enslavement and of two African-American chefs who attained the highest levels of their profession in ways that remain unduplicated to this day.

Harris, of City University New York, is one of the most admired food writers in the United States. Her many books, including High on the Hog and Hot Stuff: A Cookbook in Praise of the Piquant, track the food and food-ways of the African-American Diaspora.