Growing up under the apron strings of so many strong and talented women shaped my childhood and who I am today. Without my Mama, Grandmommie, and Aunt Nedra, my books Servin’ Up Summer and Breads & Spreads would never have been written. I grew up learning from them – how to make ice cream perfectly creamy, how to make sure dough stays moist, and how to keep fried chicken perfectly crispy.
Of course my Daddy’s garden played a huge role in my love of cooking. A large summer harvest meant there were always fresh veggies to cook, pickle, or just eat straight from the vine.
When I am acknowledged for my baking and cooking, it isn’t just me winning the award, it is the men and women who raised me winning as well. Though most have passed on, their legacy lives in my heart, memories and the pages of my cookbooks. From winning fourth-grade baking competitions to accepting Living Now Awards for Breads & Spreads in 2019 and now Servin’ Up Summer, my family guided me through it all, even when they didn’t know they were.
I don’t have a recipe for everyone today, just my thanks. Thank you to Mama and Daddy and Grandmommie, and Grandaddy for raising me in a household that saw food more than just sustenance. Thank you to those who supported me in the writing and publishing of my cookbooks. And thank you to everyone who has purchased a book, read one of my blogs, or made one of my recipes. Food is love and food is hospitality and I hope that when I share my recipes and stories, you all can feel that love.
You can find recipes just like this in Servin’ Up Summer available for purchase here. It’s my newest collection of recipes. Servin’ Up Summer includes my favorite summer dishes, cocktails, and desserts. It’s a taste of summer in the South on every page. Available now for only $29.95.