top of page

These items are currently available at Sweet Potatoes Restaurant in Winston Salem, NC.

Soul Food Odyssey
by Stephanie L. Tyson
Soul Food Odyssey is recipes - recipes from the restaurant, recipes from the families of Chef Stephanie Tyson and co-owner Vivian Joiner, recipes that are Southern, plain and simple.

In the introduction to Soul Food Odyssey, Chef Stephanie Tyson describes her early feelings when people assumed her Sweet Potatoes restaurant was a “soul food” establishment. “Soul food to me was like the boxer George Foreman,” she says. “He would stand and go toe-to-toe. It wasn't pretty but he got the job done. Southern food, on the other hand, was more like Muhammad Ali—fancier footwork but the same effectiveness. I wanted Ali. I missed the connection that they were both great fighters. Once I got off my high horse, I wanted to know, from a culinary point of view, how do you make what is essentially castaway food into a ‘cuisine’?”

In Soul Food Odyssey, Tyson takes readers along on her journey back to find the food her grandmother called “sumntaeat.” The recipes she shares include how to cook various parts of the pig from “the router to the tooter”; other meat dishes, including everything from stewed turkey wings and pot roast to a Low Country boil; what Tyson calls “stone soul sides,” including crackling cornbread, hoecakes, and, of course, different kinds of greens; soups and stews including oxtail and fish head stew and “Everything in It Vegetable Soup”; and desserts “to sell your soul for."
Along with the recipes come Tyson’s comments, which reflect her biting wit as well as her deep appreciation of the food she has come to embrace.​

Well, Shut My Mouth!

The Sweet Potatoes Restaurant Cookbook
by Stephanie L. Tyson


Well, Shut My Mouth! The Sweet Potatoes Restaurant Cookbook is recipes - recipes from the restaurant, recipes from the families of Chef Stephanie Tyson and co-owner Vivian Joiner, recipes that are Southern, plain and simple.

In creating the recipes for Sweet Potatoes, Tyson used all of her influences - Geechee flavor from Joiner's father, who was from the Hilton Head area of South Carolina; her mother's working-woman "out of the can and into the pan" shortcuts; and her training in culinary arts at Baltimore International College and her later work in South Carolina, the Florida Keys, Arizona, and Maryland.

Just the names of the recipes in this book are enough to whet one's appetite: Pimento Cheese Fondue; Sweet Potato, Corn, and Country Ham Risotto; Gullah Shrimp and Crab Pilau; Slow Cooker Chocolate Stout Pot Roast; Down-Home 'Tata Salad; Molasses Dijon Dressing; Sweet Potato Brad Pudding with Pecan Crunch Topping; and many others. Most recipes include a bit of flavorful commentary from the chef, such as this tip for spicy greens: "If you are faint of heart (burn), eliminate the red pepper altogether."

Well, Shut My Mouth! is also the history of the two women who started a locally and nationally acclaimed restaurant (Our State, Southern Living, New York Times). As Tyson says in her introduction, "Every part of me is a part of Sweet Potatoes." In Well, Shut My Mouth! she shares a culinary experience that has been a favorite of Winston-Salem natives and visitors for years. Now, patrons have the tools to re-create the Sweet Potatoes dining experience in their own homes.



Praise for Well, Shut My Mouth!
“Everything about this book is correct except the title. Anyone with a taste bud in their mouth should follow these recipes and open their mouth.”

- Maya Angelou

“The opening of Sweet Potatoes was a milestone event in the city’s efforts to revitalize Trade Street. Sweet Potatoes acted as a catalyst for the tremendous success of Winston-Salem’s Arts District. In the few short years of its existence, Sweet Potatoes has become an icon for our community and is an attraction known throughout the state.”

Allen Joines, mayor of Winston-Salem since 2001

“In the heart of Winston-Salem’s Downtown Arts District, Sweet Potatoes restaurant greets its clientele with an atmosphere and cuisine that mirror the lively mix of shops, studios, and galleries surrounding it.”

- Janet C. Pittard, Our State magazine

“From the very first moment I met Viviàn and Stephanie and was lifted by the kitchen’s aroma, I was in love. Having produced the film Fried Green Tomatoes, and being something of an expert on their preparation throughout the South, I was enthralled with Stephanie’s delicious recipe. Her FGT are crisp on the outside and juicy on the inside. They have full flavor and are the best I have tasted anywhere outside of Idgie and Ruth’s Whistle Stop Café. However, you need to try the Fried Chicken and the Banana Pudding. They are a rustic Cordon Bleu education in themselves—simply amazing. Our family saves them for special occasions.”

- Jordan Kerner, dean of the School of Filmmaking at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts. Pub. Date: August 1, 2011

bottom of page