How one chef is honoring his Gullah Geechee roots

Because their enslavement was on isolated plantations, the Gullah Geechee were able to hold onto and pass down many of their traditions.
4:35 | 01/11/22

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Transcript for How one chef is honoring his Gullah Geechee roots
[MUSIC PLAYING] BYRON PITTS: As a chef, tell me what's-- what's unique about Gullah food? - A lot of seasonality-- BYRON PITTS: May I? Sorry-- - Oh, yeah. Please, please, help yourself. - Thank you. - A lot of seasonality, too. It's a food that's rooted in tradition. Some food was rooted in our enslavement. Some was stuff that came with us. [MUSIC PLAYING] BYRON PITTS: In North Carolina, tobacco was king. In Alabama, cotton was king. In Charleston, South Carolina-- - Rice was king-- hence, The Rice Kingdom. [MUSIC PLAYING] - You guys, the barbecue sauce-- it's over here. BYRON PITTS: So what's the menu today? - We got a pot of Sea Island red peas with kale. We got butter beans and okra. And we have some-- there's some Carolina gold rice. And we got some-- some whole roasted chicken, some ribs-- a lot of love. - The brother smiles when he says that. - A lot of love. - I like that. - Yes, sir. [MUSIC PLAYING] - What's it mean to you to be Gullah? - Oh, it's pride. It's knowing that you-- our ancestors-- held on to a lot of their roots from West Africa, Central Africa, and we're still here. Even through all the changes and gentrification, and the things that we were going through-- we're still pushing. It's a renaissance right now. To be proud of your roots, even if your roots are still here or your roots left here. And it's just something that resonates in my heart. [MUSIC PLAYING] BYRON PITTS: To hold on to something when your dignity was denied to you. - Yes, to hold on to something that you know where you came from. It's told me what to hold on to that, because a lot of other areas in the South-- and even in this country-- we weren't-- they weren't able to hold on to. ALBERT GEORGE: What a reality is, it's-- it's a lot of change that's going to occur. - You seem sad. - It's sad, because it's, uh-- it's a reality that a lot of people don't deal with. It's going to have a disproportionate impact on those people who don't have the resources to mitigate the risk. If nothing is done, I'm afraid a community like this may not really exist 80 years from now. - You know, at some point this whole coastal region could be underwater. And what does that mean to the landscape of where you're from? - I always say that we've been able to reinvent ourselves over and over and over again. I think, we'll just reinvent ourselves again. And we'll still know who we are, our heritage, our roots. And we may not be on the coast anymore. Hopefully, we still will be on the coast. We may be two hours in, but we're still here. Our energy is still here. People are still here. And we're not a dying culture. We have a long ways to go. But-- I think, the more voices out there, like myself and many others, that's out here putting this heritage-- this culture-- out to the masses-- the more we will win. [MUSIC FADES OUT]

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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