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Inside the plight of Louisiana's Black chefs: 'How do I turn my oppressor into my customer?'

Zella Palmer and Leah Chase_ Photo Credit_ Jeremy Shine.JPG
Jeremy Shine
Author and educator Zella Palmer with television personality and pioneering Creole chef, Leah Chase, at Dooky Chase Restaurant, 2015.

In 1949, Lena Richard became the first-known African American to host her own cooking show, which aired on WDSU twice a week, and introduced New Orleans cuisine to a larger audience.

But she is just one of a number of prominent Black chefs to help spread Creole recipes. Endowed Chair and Director of the Ray Charles Program in African American Material Culture at Dillard University, Zella Palmer, tells us more about the history of Black chefs in Louisiana.

Also on Louisiana Considered, Louisiana voters rejected an amendment to overhaul the state’s complicated sales tax collection system, but some say the system must be addressed again. Tax attorney Jason DeCuir tells us why Louisiana’s current system might be unconstitutional under a recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling.

Today’s episode of Louisiana Considered was hosted by Adam Vos. Our producer is Alana Schreiber and our digital editor is Katelyn Umholtz. Our engineers are Garrett Pittman, Aubrey Procell, and Thomas Walsh. 

You can listen to Louisiana Considered Monday through Friday at 12:00 and 7:30 pm. It’s available on Spotify, Google Play, and wherever you get your podcasts. 

Louisiana Considered is made possible with support from our listeners. Thank you!

Adam is responsible for coordinating WRKF's programming and making sure everything you hear on the radio runs smoothly. He is also the voice of Baton Rouge's local news every afternoon during All Things Considered.
Alana Schreiber is the managing producer for the live daily news program, Louisiana Considered. She comes to WWNO from KUNC in Northern Colorado, where she worked as a radio producer for the daily news magazine, Colorado Edition. She has previously interned for Minnesota Public Radio in St. Paul and The Documentary Group in New York City.