Growing up in Charleston, South Carolina, I was heavily influenced by the Gullah culture. My momma spoke Geechee, as we called it, which is a dying mixture related to Bahamiam Dialect, Barbadian Dialect, Belezian Dialect, Jamaican Patois, Trinidadian Creole, and the Krio language of Sierra Leone found in West Africa.
When my momma was angry or excited, she would often switch from English to Gullah, or the “Sea Island Creole” language. It can be very difficult to understand, and I am passionate about preserving the culture. I hate to see the culture disappear because of tourism and other reasons. I hope through my poetry and future books I can help to educate and preserve this special language.
So my brother Anthony is probably going to be so embarrassed when he reads this, but I just have to share this story with you all!
When Anthony was around three years old he was outside crawling and playing near the vegetable gardens that our mom had planted. Mom had taken the clothes down from outside and had gone upstairs for what seemed to be only a few minutes. Anthony and I were outside by ourselves and somehow during that short time of mom’s absence, Anthony picked over sixty green tomatoes from mom’s vegetable garden! Our mom came back from inside the house and was livid needless to say, however she made the best of the situation and our family ate fried green tomatoes in every shape and form possible for about two weeks straight.
(Note: A little oil goes a long way)
Crispy Hazelnut Tomatoes
You will need:
2 Heirloom Tomatoes
1 cup Hazelnut Meal
1/4 teaspoon black pepper (add more if you like)
3 tablespoons coconut oil ( a little goes a LONG WAY!)
Heat an iron pan with the coconut oil, but be careful not to burn. Slice the tomatoes thick.
Take each piece of tomato and dip it into the egg first, then dip into the hazelnut meal with the pepper mixed together before dropping it into the pan delicately. Cook only once on each side until golden brown.
You’re done, but not before you sit down and enjoy each bite slowly and mindfully!