Sista Girl: Felicia A. O'Dell's ultra-low-budget cooking videos are what the internet needs



I see what she sayin’. What about you other muthafuckas?

Really not too different from the Galloping Gourmet of my youth, albeit with less wine and ascots.


If she got a cable-network cooking show, the producers would make her evil and judgemental, with the dramatic element becoming more powerful than the instruction.

Which is a shame because this sounds just what people need to get from under the grip of processed-food tyranny.


Nice fucking stove.


Isn’t it? Don’t get me wrong, I fucking love those videos - but judging from that kitchen, she and her family don’t seem to be poor, exactly.


That last vid says she did ten years and was a crackhead? Looks like she turned her shit around. Thumbs up, sistagirl. Nice kitchen. And the recipes actually do look tasty and cheap. Good work.


The other thing is to have a big pot of beans on the stove and a couple dozen eggs in the fridge to provide additional protein. A cup of cooked beans would go a long way in her recipe. Cranberry beans are my fave - they have texture and color but they cook and digest much more easily than pintos.

Fry up some hash browns every week, or fry some rice. Get the big frozen bags of chicken quarters and boil them to meat and broth. Go to Costco and get those jugs of dried onions, garlic, and chili powder. Get the 10 lb package of oatmeal. And get a big cast iron skillet or a wok to replace that teflon fry pan, girl friend. .


Should I be laughing or crying?

In a town in southernmost Sicily
Lived a family too proud to be poor
In the year that fever took father away
They hastened for American shores
Now a mother and her son are standing in line
It’s a cold day on Ellis Isle
And they look to the Statue of Liberty
For the boy we have American life

Ong is a Laotian refugee
He works in the audio trade
The smoke from flux is filling his lungs
He’s earning minimum wage
Spending spare time down on
San Pablo ave
Once a week gets a woman for the night
And he writes home tales of prosperity
For the boy we have American life

Bob is an unemployed veteran
Born and bred in the South Bronx
He’s living off the streets down in east L.A.
Residing in a cardboard box
Now he plays a little guit and he has a small dog
Searching for aluminum cans
And he hold on tight to his dignity
He was born into American life


I have to agree on the Teflon frying pan. Felicia may have finesse to not gouge the coating with the metal utensils, but it still makes me wince.


And then there’s Scanpan nonstick.
(note video has horrible clicking, but it’s the only one I can find that shows how the coating is applied.)

I’ve had a 10" fry pan for about a decade and it has only minor scratches with regular use of metal utensils. Of course you’re not going to find them in the bargain bin at the local home store, but that’s why there’s Amazon.

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You must not have watched the video; just about everything that goes in to her recipes is pre-processed food. Ramen with seasoning packets, crescent roll dough (pillsbury, presumably), etc. I think she’s even recommending getting a chicken breast from a fast-food restaurant. She’s entertaining, and I appreciate what she’s trying to do, but it just highlights the kind of poor choices people have to make when they don’t have a lot of money, live in areas without access to fresh food, and don’t have any kind of cooking training. It’s actually exactly what the internet doesn’t need.


She could set up a cooking show with the Trailer Park Boys. They know how to reduce your food bill, all about baking, and after-dinner entertainment. Know what I’m sayin’?

I wouldn’t go that far. Yes, I believe in cooking with fresh food – I usually spend over an hour every night cooking – but that’s not the only point of cooking. She is still creating tasty food for her family to sit down to together every night. There are many many people on the internet who feel that they don’t have the skills or money to create even that, so they eat fast-food by the TV, or everyone eating separately at different times, every night.

This woman is demonstrating a respect for food and for feeding your family.


When I lived in the city I was on the edge of Chinatown, and there were a number of small markets that were primarily food wholesalers to the Chinese restaurants. They would get crates of vegetables right off the truck and sort them on the sidewalk. I used to get two shopping bags stuffed with vegetables for $10. Too bad our model of making food available consists of figuring out where to put super Walmart in the city.


They should record in Landscape Mode though…

These are not “How to create healthy, nutritionally balanced meals on a tight budget” videos. They are “How to make cheap food taste good” videos. I’m sure the hate machine that lives within the internet has already spun up and criticized Sista Girl’s food choices, cooking methods, tools, clothing and speech, and has also made all sorts of assumptions about her life, financial situation and family, past, present and future. You think she’s doing it wrong? Let’s see you do it better. But you have to live where she lives, shop where she shops and feed the same number of people she does on her budget. Besides, how is this any different from the 90 year old lady sharing Depression-era recipes? I don’t recall her getting crap for the nutritional value of her hotdogs and rice dish.

I like Sista Girl for her “I haven’t got time for this shit, you wanna make a video, made a video, but point the camera at the damn food, don’t ask stupid questions and stay the fuck outta my way” attitude.


Youtube really should have an option so I can block all vertical video…

You make a compelling point. I suppose when viewed as a kind of urban “Suvivorman” in which she shows how to cook if one must using only low cost, pre-made foods and simple cooking instructions, there is some value. But just like nobody should ever have to eat grubs to survive, nobody should have to eat that ramen beef stew either.

“There’s class warfare, but it’s my class, the rich class, that’s making war, and we’re winning.” - Warren Buffett