Juneteenth dinner, lunch, cocktail recipes by NC Black chefs

Durham chef Ricky Moore, owner of the Saltbox Seafood Joint in Durham, prepares orders during lunch on April 27, 2016. Moore offers a Strawberry Hibiscus “Spanish” Cocktail for Juneteenth.

Durham chef Ricky Moore, owner of the Saltbox Seafood Joint in Durham, prepares orders during lunch on April 27, 2016. Moore offers a Strawberry Hibiscus “Spanish” Cocktail for Juneteenth.

jleonard@newobserver.com

For many families across the Triangle, Juneteenth is both celebratory and a day of remembrance, complete with a stacked dinner table.

If you’re looking to celebrate Juneteenth this year, try your hand at some of these recipes from local Black chefs.

On the menu: A traditionally red cocktail, some classic soul food entrees and a vegan sweet treat.

“Juneteenth, also known as Freedom Day, is a day of remembrance for me and my family. We also focus on the continued fight for racial equity, safety and for a just society,” said Ricky Moore, founder and chef of Saltbox Seafood Joint in Durham.

“The family gatherings and food are much like a traditional cookout. Each member of the family — as one would do for a potluck — provides a specialty dish for the feast. There is fun, laughter, fellowship, community and bonding at a Juneteenth celebration!”

The News & Observer spoke with some local Black-owned restaurant leaders to bring the celebration to your cookout.

For a full (and updating) list of Black-owned restaurants and other businesses in the Triangle, visit newsobserver.com/news.

Juneteenth cocktail recipe

Strawberry Hibiscus “Spanish” Cocktail by Saltbox Seafood Joint

Here’s a Juneteenth recipe for a strawberry hibiscus “Spanish” cocktail by Moore, Saltbox Seafood Joint’s founder and chef.

“This is a fun fruity Brazilian red wine drink, adored with sweetened condensed milk,” Moore said. “I like to add fresh local strawberries and an infusion of hibiscus.”

Handmade strawberry soda was often on tables at early Juneteenth celebrations, as the red soda color symbolized blood shed during slavery, the Washington Post reported.

This recipe serves three.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup Rose wine, dry

  • 4 ounces Hibiscus, dried (steeped in 7 oz of water)

  • 6 ounces can sweetened condensed milk

  • 1/2 cup fresh chopped pineapple

  • 1 cup fresh sliced ​​strawberries

  • ice cubes

Tools:

  • small pot

  • Strainer

  • pitcher

  • blender

Directions:

  1. In a small pot, bring water to a boil.

  2. Add hibiscus, remove from the stove and let steep for 10 minutes. Strain and cool.

  3. Fill a pitcher with ice cubes, and set it aside inside the freezer to get frosted.

  4. In a blender, add hibiscus liquid, strawberries wine, pineapple and sweetened condensed milk. Blend it until smooth and frothy.

  5. Pour the cocktail into your pitcher. Garnish with sliced ​​strawberries, and serve immediately.

Saltbox Seafood Joint in Durham-Chapel Hill Boulevard in Durham will offer a Juneteenth Holiday Tray on Saturday, June 18 (as the restaurant is closed Sundays). There will be a Spanish strawberry-hibiscus holiday drink inspired by the red beverages traditionally served at Juneteenth gatherings. Enjoy NC Peel & Eat Spiced Shrimp, BBQ Watermelon, Hush-Honeys and more.

Info: saltboxseafoodjoint.com

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For many families across the Triangle, Juneteenth is both celebratory and a day of remembrance, complete with a stacked dinner table. Juli Leonard jleonard@newobserver.com

Juneteenth chicken and waffles recipe

Chicken and Sweet Potato Waffles by Big C Waffles

Here’s a recipe for chicken and sweet potato waffles from Carl Richardson, owner of Big C Waffles in Durham.

“Growing up in the south, you are raised with family and tradition. And when we say family, we include community, as well as friends,” Richardson said. “We all come together to spread our values ​​and celebrate traditions taught to us by our elders, passed down to our younger generations.”

Nana’s Sweet Potato Pie Waffles by Big C Waffles

Ingredients

  • 4 baked sweet potatoes, skinned.

  • 4 TBSP butter

  • 2 eggs

  • 1/4 TSP nutmeg

  • 1/4 TSP cinnamon

  • 1 cup sugar

  • 3/4 cup whole milk

  • 10 TBSP sweet potato pie mix

  • 3 cups dry waffle mix (Big C Waffles Mix is ​​coming soon! In the meantime, you can use store-bought waffle mix.)

  • Ingredients required for your waffle mix. This might just be water, or it could be a combination of oil, milk and eggs.

  • cooking spray

Tools:

  • Two mixing bowls

  • electric mixer

  • hand mixer

  • rotating waffle maker

Directions:

  1. Using an electric mixer, combine your skinned sweet potatoes, butter, eggs, nutmeg, cinnamon, sugar and whole milk in a bowl.

  2. In a separate bowl, make two cups of waffle mix according to package instructions. Add 10 TBSP of sweet potato pie mix, and mix well.

  3. Pour the waffle and sweet potato pie mixture into your large bowl with the wet sweet potato mix.

  4. Add one more cup of dry waffle mix. Hand mix the full mixture for one minute.

  5. Set your rotating waffle maker to heat seating 4.

  6. Use cooking spray evenly on the waffle maker.

  7. Pour mix until evenly distributed.

  8. Cook waffles for 3 minutes on each side.

  9. Serve hot.

Uncle Wayne’s Chicken by Big C Waffles:

Ingredients:

  • Chicken of your choice (if you want to do it the Uncle Wayne’s way, Richardson said, use wings and tenders.)

  • Uncle Wayne’s All Purpose Seasoning, which you can purchase at big-c-waffles.myshopify.com.

  • clear vegetable cooking oil

Directions:

  1. Wash and rinse the chicken.

  2. Cover the chicken in Uncle Wayne’s All Purpose Seasoning.

  3. Heat your cooking oil to 325°F.

  4. Cook and serve hot.

“Juneteenth allows us to continue and celebrate family, culture and serving our community,” Richardson said.

Big C Waffles is a gourmet waffle spot on Allendown Drive in Durham. Check out their online shop to find Uncle Wayne’s All Purpose Seasoning and Granny-B Tropical Punch.

Info: bigcwaffles.com

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Saltbox Seafood Joint in Durham-Chapel Hill Boulevard in Durham will offer a Juneteenth Holiday Tray on Saturday, June 18 (as the restaurant is closed Sundays). Juli Leonard jleonard@newobserver.com

Juneteenth salmon cake recipe

Salmon Cakes by Nzingas Kitchen

Here’s a Juneteenth recipe for salmon cakes from Zuri Reynolds Hester, owner and operator of Nzingas Kitchen in Durham.

Ingredients:

  • 1 can of salmon (or 12 ounces of fresh salmon)

  • 1/4 cup mayo

  • 1/4 cup mustard

  • 2 hot sauce dashes

  • 1 1/2 TBSP Cajun seasonings

  • 1/2 cup self rising flour

  • 1/2 cup diced onion

  • Grape seed oil

Tools:

  • mixing bowl

  • cast iron skillet

  • spatula

Directions:

  1. Remove neck bones from salmon.

  2. In your mixing bowl, combine all the ingredients together and form 4-ounce patties.

  3. Put your cast iron skillet on medium high heat. Add grape seed oil to the pan.

  4. Wait for the oil to heat up, and add your salmon cakes in batches.

  5. Cook 3 minutes on each side to develop a crust.

  6. Once done, pair with some creamy grits.

Visit Nzingas Kitchen (originally called Nzingas Breakfast Cafe) on Fayetteville Street in Durham for Cajun and Creole breakfast, lunch and dinner eats.

Info: nzingasbreakfastcafe.com

Recipe for a vegan Juneteenth dessert

Vegan Deep Fried Oreos by Boss of Vegan

Here’s a vegan dessert from Demetrius Liverman, owner of Boss of Vegan in Raleigh.

Ingredients:

  • 20 Oreos

  • 4.5 cup flour. Liverman uses regular all purpose flour here for the fluffiest texture, but feel free to substitute whole wheat pastry flour, spelled flour or a gluten free flour mix.

  • 3 TBSP baking powder. (“What makes the pancakes so fluffy!” Liverman said.)

  • salt

  • 3 TBSP sugar. You could substitute pure maple syrup, agave or coconut sugar.

  • 3 cups not milk. Any other non-dairy milk will work here, such as almond, coconut, hemp or oat milk.

  • 1.5 cups of water

  • 2 TBSP oil for batter. You can use canola oil, melted coconut oil, avocado oil, olive oil or melted vegan butter. If you don’t use oil, simply omit and add more non-dairy milk.

  • Oil for frying.

Tools:

  • deep fryer

  • bowl

  • paper towels

  • tongs

Directions:

  • Mix the flour, baking powder, salt, sugar, not milk, water and 2 TSP oil in your mixing bowl. Make sure no lumps remain.

  • Fill your deep fryer (or large pan) with oil. Heat to 375°F.

  • Dip the cookies into the batter one at a time, and carefully place into the hot frying oil.

  • Fry only four or five at a time to avoid overcrowding. Cook until the cookies are golden brown, about two minutes.

  • Drain on a paper towel-lined plate before serving.

Boss of Vegan is a vegan burger shop open for curbside pick up and delivery on Corporation Parkway in Raleigh.

Info: bossofvegan.com

What’s your Juneteenth tradition?

Does your family throw a themed party? Wear certain outfits? Visit a sacred spot? Make a special dish? (Share the recipe, if so!)

Tell us how your family celebrates Juneteenth, and we might include your response in a future story.

Kimberly Cataudella (she/her) is a service journalism reporter for The News & Observer.

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