Sweet & Southern: Classic Desserts with a Twist


Tell us about growing up in Mississippi.
I experienced the ideal Southern childhood—on Sundays after church we always went to my grandmother’s house for lunch, where we cooked and baked. I had that storybook Southern grandmother who made biscuits and cornbread and fried chicken. She also always had a caramel cake and a coconut layer cake sitting at the end of the table at lunch, though these were made by a “cake lady” neighbor. But we always spent the weekend baking desserts, like pecan pies and cream cheese pound cakes, and then ate those over the next week. So during my childhood I was surrounded by sweets all the time, and since I had a huge sweet tooth, I took advantage of that and ate as much as possible. That’s pretty much how
I grew up—a slice of cake in my mouth at all times.


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