Raised on a farm near Donalda, my parents operated a small grain operation and hog operation with cows and chickens roaming about. Dad and mom also had a large garden every year to feed our fairly large family.
Money was always tight so we had to be as self-sufficient as possible. Harvesting our own game in the fall was a must for our freezer box. As a young girl, I began to associate food with both happy and sad times. We would celebrate and mourn around food. I loved the memories, smiles and laughter that form around a shared meal.
One of my fondest memories as a child was when the harvest crew would gather in a dusty field to eat. We would sit, eat and laugh. I loved those moments, the togetherness. Many rural folks will tell you the same stories.
I started cooking early on because mom had a job outside the family farm. I was responsible for canning, cooking meals and baking as early as 10 yrs old and I loved it! One summer when I was 13, I cooked so many homemade angel food cakes, we didn't eat them for years after. I loved nothing more than seeing the canning shelves full after working for hours on pickles, fruit, relishes, jams and jellies!
I would create little settings with dishes, decorating plates to perfection and I still carry that passion into my cooking today. It's not just a meal it's an experience. It should be memorable, I cannot settle for "good".
When I describe my food to someone I tell them it's country soul food. It may be roast, mashed potatoes and gravy but it'll be one of the best meals you've ever tasted.
Now, as a mother of four beautiful children, carrying on my passion for food on to the next generation has extended to bringing great homemade food into freezers across Alberta. Making people happy through food is a dream come true!
Take care everyone!