Rhonda Turner Huffman of Bruce likes to cook when she’s in the mood, and she loves to try new stuff. “I wish I had Mom’s (last week’s cook Barbara Turner) talent! She can put a casserole together out of anything and it’s good, and she can cook anything,” said Rhonda, adding that her brother, Brent, is just like their mom, and can cook anything, too.
Barbara Turner remembers as a child spending time with her mother, the late Salima Boyle Denley, in the kitchen watching her cook. “She loved to cook and, of course, I wanted to be just like her.
If Joe Boy Tunnell ever runs out of Slap Ya Mama seasoning, Cavender’s Greek seasoning, chicken broth or smoked paprika, there might not be any cooking at his house. Needless to say, he likes his food spicy.
Patsy Zeidman of Calhoun City usually cooks something different each time she hosts the Bridge Club. “The members are all good cooks and if they like something “that’s always a good sign to me,” she said. “They are an appreciative audience, and they like my homemade pies,” saying that she always makes her own crust.
“I don’t remember a time when I was not in the kitchen with my mom (Missy Bryant), sister (Amy Walsh), aunts (Sue Gore and Garnett Beaudoin) and my grandparents,” said Natalie Bryant, formerly of Calhoun County.
“I sure have done a lot of cooking in my lifetime,” said Barbara Cain Lantrip of Banner, who said she’s been cooking since she was eight, and “always for at least 20-25 people.” She learned from watching her mother, Ethel Leachman Cain. The first things she remembers cooking were English peas, fried potatoes and cornbread.
“If you can’t cook with your heart, don’t bother--it won’t come out the same. I love to cook, and I love to be around people,” said Martha Thompson of Calhoun City. “I am an old school cook” she said, but not as much as her grandmother, Naomi Kilgore, who raised her.
Usually starting in November and going through January, Vickie Todd Harrell of Vardaman and formerly of Bruce, continuously makes batches of sourdough bread.
Wanda Meadows of Sabougla got a recipe for Teacher’s Delight cake from Calhoun Academy when her daughter, Kim, was in school there. She makes them a lot for Christmas gifts and always includes a written copy of the Bible verse, “This is the day which the Lord hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.” Psalm 118:24, because she says this is true, and she has had such a good and blessed life.
Phyllis Camp of Banner does her cooking on a General Electric stove bought in July of 1950 from Pryor in Calhoun City. She has been using it since 1986, when her mother-in-law, Hazel Camp, died. Her husband, Donald, said they still have the owner’s manual and that it cost $369 new.