by Arnold D. Dyre
I think it pays to be suspicious of skinny cooks. Of course, there are exceptions to my general rule of thumb that a fat cook cooks best, but I suggest that someone who has eaten a lot of biscuits can bake up the best batch.
I love the cooking shows on television, but I am very suspicious of the so-called experts who look as if they have been on a starvation routine.
The now departed Cajun cook extraordinaire, Justin Wilson, was not what I would call fat, but he had a waistline properly constructed over the course of time by consuming the fantastic food he prepared. It was my privilege to once have had a front row seat at a cooking performance put on by Justin Wilson, and I gobbled up everything he offered, both the food and the humor.
I have enjoyed myself to the fullest at Paul Prudhomme’s famous K-Paul’s Kitchen in New Orleans and have eaten at Paula Deen’s The Lady and Sons in Savannah. I watch Paula regularly on TV and also two other rotund celebrity chefs, Emeril and Ina Garten (the “Barefoot Contessa”). There is another very attractive celebrity chef who looks about like an Ole Miss cheerleader, but I personally doubt that she actually cooks at all, and I will not mention her name. Initially, I was suspicious of Oprah’s protégé, Rachael Ray, who was just too cute to be a good cook. Of late, however, Miss Ray has come “around,” so to speak.
At the outset, I acknowledged that there are exceptions to the rule. My mother, Daisy Dyre, was a very petite lady but was a tremendous cook, and the same can be said of her dear friend and Gore Springs neighbor, Joy Stroud. I mean none of Miss Joy’s other dishes any disrespect whatsoever, but her sweet potato pie is in a league of its own. Miss Dell Trussell, who cooked at the Gore Springs School when I was a boy, was by no means fat, but she cooked with the best of them.
Like my Mother, my sister Sarah is petite but she can cook to make you fat. On the other hand, my sister Patricia is just too health conscious to turn out anything fit to eat. If you don’t watch her, she will try to pass off tofu as grits. Patricia makes chicken salad without using the yolks of the eggs she boils to put into the salad – she throws the boiled yolks away! It’s a good thing Patricia now lives in Washington state, because I think that is against the law in Mississippi.
Arnold Dyre writes:
"I live in Madison, Mississippi, and am a 61-year old Jackson attorney, retired from active law practice. I was born in Montgomery County and grew up in Grenada County and currently write a weekly column for The Daily Star, a newspaper in Grenada, Mississippi. My weekly columns, as well as some features for various special editions, are mostly anecdotal musings calculated to interest local readers and relate primarily to nostalgic memories of experiences growing up in a rural community called Gore Springs. I have had similar types of pieces published in The Oxford SO & SO, The Tombigbee Country Magazine, and Yesterday's Memories."
"Additionally, I write short stories and poetry, and I've also completed two legal thriller/police/crime novels for which I am currently seeking the representation of a literary agent and/or publisher."
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