Growing up in Pulaski, Tennessee, family, food and cooking played a key role in Sheree Kelley’s daily life. While other neighborhood children played outside, Sheree spent hours in the kitchen watching her grandmother Jewel Johnson whip up one delicious creation after another. Her favorite recipe - Biscuits and gravy. After mastering her mother’s cornbread at the age of 8, Sheree’s baking and cooking skills began to grow - along with her collection of family recipes. Even then she knew that a family cookbook was in her future.
In the early 90’s, Sheree was invited to a Pampered Chef party and she was hooked. She became a Pampered Chef consultant and quickly became the top sales person in the state - and the nation. In 2007, Sheree and her husband Alton Kelley moved to Nashville where he took a position as Executive Director of the historic Belle Meade Plantation. Once in Music City, Sheree accelerated her passion for cooking and baking, quickly earning a reputation as “The Belle
Meade Cake Lady” - and as a regular guest chef on local television. But after one Thanksgiving with over 300 caramel cake orders, she realized that cooking out of her home kitchen wasn’t sustainable and she needed a new plan. So she opened the winery at Belle Meade Plantation where her culinary skills and tours for visitors have since become legendary.
Sheree never abandoned her dream of creating a cookbook with all the family recipes she’d collected, some dating back to her great-grandparents. But she had so much material that she and her publisher decided only a series of cookbooks would do, complete with family stories to go with each recipe. When her grandmother passed away, Sheree decided it was time to embark on her first cookbook, one focused on biscuits and breads. The cornerstone recipe, My Big Ol’ Southern Biscuit. Those same biscuits she made with her grandmother Jewel growing up.