Audio Recording "I learned from looking."

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About this Item

"I learned from looking."
Contributor Names
Benson, Easter (Narrator)
Levitas, Susan, 1961- (Interviewer)
Created / Published
Subject Headings
-  Vocational education
-  African Americans
-  Restaurants
-  Foodways
-  Housework
-  Oral history
-  Interviews
-  Sound recordings
-  E & A Soul Food Restaurant (Paterson, N.J.)
-  Ethnography
-  United States -- New Jersey -- Paterson
-  Interview with Easter Benson, owner of E & A Soul Food Restaurant.
-  Summary of audio segment: (Remember first dish you ever cooked?) she was trying to make biscuits and tried and tried and that was her first experience cooking and she was ten or eleven. We didn't have the food to cook like we have now. Back then it was biscuits, field peas, collard greens, turnips; remembers cooking one hundred biscuits a day and pinto beans and fat back meat. She cooked for next door neighbor since they had no father, her family would eat at my mother's house. In order for us to have enough of whatever we had, I would make one hundred biscuits, pot of peas, collard greens, whatever we had. But them biscuits were always there. I was the only one really interested in cooking. The other girl next door was as old as me, but she would washed the dishes, I was the one did the cooking. If I ever see you doing something, I can do it too, when it comes down to cooking. Always was in the kitchen; can make anything in the kitchen but a homemade cake --either too rich or it falls, it just don't come out right. The first biscuits she made her family called them "bombs." "We had to eat them -- we couldn't afford to throw them away. They wasn't too good at that time, but I got it together."
Digital Audio Tape
Call Number/Physical Location
AFC 1995/028: WIP-SL-A009
Source Collection
Working in Paterson Project Collection (AFC 1995/028)
American Folklife Center
Digital Id
Online Format

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Credit line

Working in Paterson Project collection, 1993-2002 (AFC 1995/028), American Folklife Center, Library of Congress

Cite This Item

Citations are generated automatically from bibliographic data as a convenience, and may not be complete or accurate.

Chicago citation style:

Benson, Easter, and Susan Levitas. "I learned from looking.". -08-11, 1994. Audio.

APA citation style:

Benson, E. & Levitas, S. (1994) "I learned from looking.". -08-11. [Audio] Retrieved from the Library of Congress,

MLA citation style:

Benson, Easter, and Susan Levitas. "I learned from looking.". -08-11, 1994. Audio. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, <>.