‘Soul Food Seasoning’ Must Be Stopped

Centrella - Soul Food SeasoningEthnic seasoning mixes have always been somewhat problematic.

The concepts of Italian seasoning and Mexican seasoning imply that, with the shake of a canister, your food will taste like it came from a different country. And truthfully, these products only make sense because the range of ethnic foods that the average American is likely to cook at home is probably incredibly limited. And in those cases, the pre-fab mixtures probably do a halfway decent job for a very narrow list of food choices. But when I came across “Soul Food Seasoning” at my local grocer the other day, I was overcome with WTF.

This product’s existence makes no sense at its core because soul food isn’t all seasoned the same. The dishes that comprise traditional soul food are highly varied in taste, and subsequently, highly varied in seasoning approaches. To purport that you could even attempt to create a “catch-all” seasoning like this offends my sensibilities.

James Chanel Wright wingsBut then again, this is not a product aimed at my household. In my household, I have a no holds barred, kitchen master as a partner. She knows how to put her whole foot in a dish, make you want to punch her in the mouth, and spontaneously start flying like Patti Labelle. A product like this is purposely meant to mislead the seasoning deficient into thinking they can make soul food now. Hint: if you need to use “soul food seasoning” to make soul food, you shouldn’t be making soul food.

The key ingredient in soul food is soul. Soul food is not a recipe to be replicated again and again. It requires care, frequent tasting, and an innate sense how just how much sugar, salt, garlic, or pepper is enough. You can’t put that in a bottle.

But they tried it anyway.

And the formula they settled on included salt, garlic, paprika, black pepper, and red peppers (amongst other proprietary things).

Centrella - Soul Food Seasoning2

Now we all know that limiting your range of seasonings in this manner is a recipe of sub-par soul food. This mix won’t get your collard greens together. It won’t have your fried chicken poppin. It definitely won’t get your gravy going. And if it can’t handle those quintessential soul food dishes, than what the hell is it good for?

The following two tabs change content below.

Daren W. Jackson

Co-Founder/Editor
Daren is one half of the Water Cooler Convos team. He's a writer, music connoisseur, and comic book geek who spends his free time working on his novel and other short stories.

52 Responses

  1. Now this is some foolery! Where did you find this? This is just wrong. I have nothing else to include in this comment. Great writing by the way!

  2. Sometimes, the nonsense just catches your eye. I was literally just walking through the store on a quick shopping trip when I spotted the mess.

    Thanks for reading!

  3. Fal Taylor says:

    This is bull. I have a soul food seasoning line in progress. Its just a mix of the standard soul food seasonings so you don’t have to open up 8 bottles of things to get the same affect. Its all blended in one shaker. Now if you need more salt or more garlic you can do that but it is the premise of having the convenience of one bottle. Soul Food is a soulful method of cooking. Don’t knock someone’s hard work while simplifying another’s life. The same goes for Cajun, Italian. Mexican etc. If you can’t cook that is a brilliant way to start. It is all about taste. Feel free to add a little of Soul Food Seasoning and Cajun to get a bigger kick or you can build off my seasoning line by combining the different ethnic seasonings. Layering flavor is an art.
    Chef Fal

  4. D Jackson says:

    Thanks for your comment. And to be honest, a soul food seasoning LINE sounds like a great idea. The problem with just one blanket soul food seasoning is that all soul food should not be seasoned the same. I think it’s misleading to the less knowledgeable. Same goes for Cajun, Italian, and Mexican like you stated.

    But if you have a line of soul food seasoning, people can use specific seasonings for specific foods. That sounds like a great time saver. A lot of people make their own seasoning mixes at home, but the ease of being able to buy it prepackaged would be amazing.

    Good luck on your venture.

  5. chibibarako says:

    The bundled spices are for people whose idea of a spice cabinet is a salt shaker, a pepper shaker and maybe (just maybe) a bottle of tabasco. It’s a cheap shorthand for “these are typical spices used in this culture’s cuisine”. (It can also be a sort of “what am I going to do with a jar of gumbo file when I only need a pinch”?) In this age of the Internet, I prefer to look up a DIY mixture and adjust the seasonings to match my spice cabinet and my palate. Especially when I’m dealing with cultures that I know use more hot pepper or more garlic than I do . . .
    My other big thing is with some of the dollar store spice companies. I have gotten some positively awful “spices” from them; I think they just grabbed leaves out of the mulcher or something. Spend the money to get good spices. If you don’t smell the spice when you open the jar, and you don’t taste it when you put a bit on the tip of your tongue, throw it out.

  6. Rhamona Esquivel says:

    Thank you Chef Fal! I just got online looking for the Clover Valley Dollar Store Soul Food spice to see if I could order it. I bought it in South Georgia and my whole family loves it! Like you said, it a convenient way to get all those spices in one bottle. We moved to Central Pennsylvania and they don’t have a Dollar Store anywhere near here. Even if they did, they probably wouldn’t have it. It goes great on french fries and as seasoning for wings and barbequed chicken. I basically use it as a salt alternative. I use A LOT less salt because the soul food has so much flavor. I love it!! I am hispanic, and I know that you can’t always get authentic ethnic spices or sauces unless you tweek them yourself, but that’s just the way it is. Being from the heart of Georgia, I know what soul food is. You definitely can’t buy it in a store, but I will take what I can get until I get a chance to go visit my good friend and have his grama make us some greens!

  7. Bebe Vee says:

    How is this any different than Lowery’s seasoning salt or Tony Chacheres’? U R being extra. Seasoning salt with these exact same ingredients is probably in your granny’s kitchen and your Aunties too.

  8. I would like to thank you for the efforts you’ve put
    in writing this website. I’m hoping to see the same high-grade content by you in the
    future as well. In fact, your creative writing abilities has encouraged me to get my very own site now 😉

  9. My relatives all the time say that I am wasting my time here at web,
    except I know I am getting familiarity daily by
    reading thes pleasant content.

  10. Teri says:

    I don’t mean ahead off sounding doom and gloom concerning the new stuff, I’m just reporting what
    I’ve seen. When looking at the clothes dryer, we need to keep your lint trap clean,
    but which doesn’t help much whenever we over-stuff the dryer.
    The combo set or combination machine simply operates being a two
    in one.

  11. Our Web Site says:

    you are in point of fact a just right webmaster.
    The website loading pace is amazing. It sort of feels that you are
    doing any unique trick. Also, The contents are
    masterwork. you’ve done a great activity in this subject!

  12. Hello there! This post couldn’t be written any better!
    Reading through this post reminds me of my previous room mate!

    He always kept chatting about this. I will forward this post to him.
    Pretty sure he will have a good read. Thanks for
    sharing!

  13. Nice blog right here! Additionally your site a lot up very fast!

    What web host are you the use of? Can I am getting your associate hyperlink for your host?
    I want my web site loaded up as fast as yours lol

  14. Please let me know if you’re looking for a author for your weblog.
    You have some really good posts and I think I would
    be a good asset. If you ever want to take some of the load off,
    I’d love to write some articles for your blog
    in exchange for a link back to mine. Please blast me an e-mail if interested.
    Many thanks!

  15. I am sure this piece of writing has touched all the internet viewers, its really really nice paragraph on building up new website.

  16. Internet Tv says:

    Piece of writing writing is also a fun, if you be
    familiar with then you can write or else it is difficult
    to write.

  17. Amazing issues here. I am very satisfied to look your article.
    Thank you so much and I am looking forward to contact you.
    Will you please drop me a mail?

  18. internet tv says:

    Hi there, i read your blog occasionally and i own a similar one and i was just wondering if
    you get a lot of spam comments? If so how do you prevent it, any plugin or anything
    you can suggest? I get so much lately it’s driving me mad
    so any assistance is very much appreciated.

  19. What i do not understood is in reality how you are no longer really a lot more smartly-appreciated
    than you might be right now. You’re so intelligent.
    You already know thus significantly in the case of this subject,
    made me individually believe it from a lot of varied
    angles. Its like men and women are not interested until it’s something to
    do with Girl gaga! Your individual stuffs excellent.
    At all times handle it up!

  20. What’s up Dear, are you in fact visiting this web site
    daily, if so then you will absolutely take pleasant knowledge.

  21. you’re actually a good webmaster. The web site loading pace
    is incredible. It kind of feels that you’re doing any distinctive trick.
    Also, The contents are masterpiece. you’ve done a fantastic job on this matter!

  22. Hey I know this is off topic but I was wondering if you knew of any widgets I could add to my blog that automatically tweet
    my newest twitter updates. I’ve been looking for
    a plug-in like this for quite some time and was hoping maybe you would have some experience
    with something like this. Please let me know if you run into anything.
    I truly enjoy reading your blog and I look forward to your new updates.

  23. We are a group of volunteers and starting a
    new scheme in our community. Your website offered us with valuable info to work on.
    You have done a formidable activity and our whole neighborhood will likely be
    thankful to you.

  24. I know this web site offers quality based content and additional
    data, is there any other website which gives such data
    in quality?

  25. It’s a pity you don’t have a donate button! I’d most certainly donate to this outstanding
    blog! I suppose for now i’ll settle for book-marking and adding your RSS feed to my Google account.

    I look forward to fresh updates and will talk about this blog with my Facebook group.
    Chat soon!

  26. Incredible! This blog looks just like my old one! It’s on a completely different subject but
    it has pretty much the same page layout and design. Superb choice of colors!

  27. I am really impressed with your writing skills and also with
    the layout on your blog. Is this a paid theme or did you customize it yourself?
    Either way keep up the nice quality writing, it’s rare to
    see a great blog like this one nowadays.

  28. Like!! Thank you for publishing this awesome article.

  29. I learn something new and challenging on blogs I stumbleupon everyday.

  30. It’s really a cool and useful piece of info. I am satisfied that you just shared this useful info with us.
    Please stay us informed like this. Thank you for sharing.

  31. kariyer says:

    We are a gaggle of volunteers and opening a new scheme in our community.
    Your web site provided us with valuable info to work on. You
    have performed a formidable activity and our whole community might be grateful to you.

  32. Good one! Interesting article over here. It’s pretty worth enough for me.

  33. Hi there, the whole thing is going well here and
    ofcourse every one is sharing facts, that’s actually excellent,
    keep up writing.