The Kitchen ~ the heart of the home.

The Kitchen is not only a room in the house to create food, its s a place to nourish the mind, the body and the soul. It‘s a room to be creative as well as creating an atmosphere of love and warmth. The Kitchen is what I like to think of as the heartbeat of the home.

Buttermilk Cinnamon Coffee Cake ~ Recipe Below

Welcome to my virtual kitchen. I grew up in the south and I think a southern kitchen is a breed of it’s own. Memories of my childhood kitchen take me back to where meals were prepared, guests sat and chatted, the day’s events were discussed and heaven forbid, those hard conversations were covered. My parents used the kitchen table for meals, homework, snacks, crafts, conversations and just plain living. I honestly remember times when I thought they would just sit in the kitchen forever.

Growing up, our house always had a open door. More times that I could ever begin to count, the door bell would ring just as we were sitting down at the table ~ always the back door ~ and somebody would stop in for a visit. They were always offered a chair, a glass of sweet tea ~ a southern kitchen staple ~ and always a plate. I thought my Mom had a special kind of kitchen magic because there was always enough food for one or two more. I now know from my own experiences, you make a little extra, prep for a little more and always make something like a coffee cake that can cover a

few extra guests. No one ever left my parent's

house hungry.

Of all the weekly meals that were made in our home, second only to Sunday "dinner" was Saturday morning breakfast. I remember waking up to the smell of bacon, cinnamon, coffee and peace. Saturday mornings, especially in the winter, weren't rushed. There was an ease in the house that said "just relax". You never knew who would show up on a Saturday mornings either. The menu could consist of bacon, sausage, eggs, hash browns, grits, coffee cake, pancake, maybe waffles but always biscuits. If it was a good Saturday, you got cheese biscuits. I swear, I think people stopped in on Saturday mornings to grab one of Mary's biscuits and a cup of freshly brewed coffee. My Mom always had the biscuit setup done just right too. There was always butter, honey, molasses and a jar of her homemade preserves. The funny thing is that I always remember somebody leaving the house with coffee cake, biscuits or both.

Buttermilk Biscuits ~ Recipe Below

Breakfast was my Mom's "meal". She made home-cooked meals most days of her life, at least since I've been around. She never used processed foods, and take out was a rare event. She cooked because she was providing meals for her family, but she'd be the first to tell anyone that she didn't enjoy cooking. That's where my love of cooking is somewhat of a mystery. I've always loved cooking shows, recipe books, trying new recipes and creating in the kitchen. She started letting me slip into the kitchen meal prep and preparing dinner at around nine or ten, but she never let me take over breakfast. She passed away in 2017. I still miss her breakfasts and her.

I have carried on the breakfast tradition with my kids. I have two boys (now young men on their own paths), but when they were growing up I tried hard to make Saturday and Sunday mornings special. They both played sports so consistency was difficult, but I'm pretty sure they have special memories of Saturday mornings that seemed to multiply boys. When my parents would visit us or we made a trip to visit them, you could be sure that the BIG breakfast was on the table. My youngest said just a few weeks ago that he really missed Mimi's eggs and biscuits. I realized that my Mom was slowing down when she started letting me make breakfast. I will cherish those breakfast memories for the rest of my life.

Mary "Mimi" Whichard 1932-2017

Saturday morning breakfasts brought to me a sense of community, serving, sharing, caring and not to mention good food. I can't tell you the number of biscuits that I've made in my lifetime, but I can guarantee my Mom had me beat by a long shot. I carry her spirit with me in every one that I make. I hope to convey those things that I learned on those Saturday mornings and more in The Kitchen Blog. Although recipes will abound in this kitchen category, it's about so much more. It's about bringing that southern heritage to life, creating a sense of community, and sharing stories of life and history. It's about sharing a heartbeat with your neighbor. The neighbor may be next door, in the next state, or on the other side of the planet. The Universe has gifted me this platform for the recipes and all that comes with preparing food. I've also been gifted the opportunity to make this world a little bit better even if its just a good meal. I am grateful that I can share the things that truly mean a lot to me. Please share with your friends and help this community to grow. I hope you can stop by, have a seat, some sweet tea, and enjoy a little Kitchen time, southern style (with a twist)

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