As the title says…I’m a southerner, born and bred. I’m also a bit of a quirky personality, hence the “saucy” part, which could also refer to cooking with sauces…get it!?
The distinct styles of southern cooking have influenced me since I was a child; I began cooking when I was ten years old. I have absolutely no formal training in the kitchen, well besides the odd cooking class here and there – which were really just watching someone else prepare a meal, while I swilled wine with my friends, ate the food then got to take home recipes! So, I am basically self-taught.
I like to say I attended the Culinary School of Hard Knocks. Which, is pretty true on its face, since my mother was not a patient instructor (read: she didn’t teach me at all, just threw me in). Once I left home, at the age of seventeen, I really started experimenting with food. I tried new and different techniques and foods that I had never even heard tell of when I was a kid.
This was in the heyday of Julia Child and Jacques Pépin’s television shows, and I learn so, so much from watching them. The first cookbook I ever owned was Everyday Cooking with Jacques Pépin. It is a small companion book that he wrote to go along with his television show and I adore it still. I’ll never forget when I was given The Way to Cook by Julia Child; I’ve cooked the recipes in that book, very nearly all of them, and many have become all time favorites!
I have collected and read, from cover to cover, dozens upon dozens of cookbooks! If I had every dime I’ve spent on cookbooks and cooking magazines, I’d be a very wealthy woman! Instead of monetary wealth, I am rich with the knowledge I have collected from the pages of those books and magazines; I feel I’m far better off for it.
Also, I have cooked and cooked and cooked; nearly every day. Even so, it is a rare thing for me to follow a recipe, exactly…except in baking, and even then I tweak them to suit my own tastes. It’s not at all unusual for me to look at several recipes for something and combine elements I like from all or some of them, coming up with a dish that better suits what I want. That said, all the recipes here are measured, so you can recreate what I’ve made.
A necessary disclaimer, living in The Bible Belt: I cook with alcohol. A lot. First, I think various wines, liquors and liqueurs really enhance the flavors of food; I am constantly experimenting with adding flavor dimensions with booze. If this offends you, I’m sorry; you don’t have to use them. Also, I am allergic to vanilla! I know! Horrible, right? So, in baking I’ve had to become creative with the use of other things as a substitute. Since vanilla extract is basically alcohol flavored with vanilla bean, I use flavored liqueurs instead.
I’m married to a wonderful man, Mr. Saucy, who is my biggest food fan…this, because he is the beneficiary of my cooking. And as much as it may seem that food is my life, I am partners with Mr. Saucy in a very busy business where we worked together for 18 years before I decided to dedicate myself full-time to this site. I’ve started a kitchen garden, am doing freelance writing and running faster than I ever was working six days a week in our business. With food, I have found that there is always time, in a hectic life, for something you love!
Cooking brings me immense joy! Food excites me and I think about it constantly! This site is a means for me to share that excitement with you, the reader. I’m so happy you’ve taken a peek at the site. I hope you’ll enjoy the content; I hope you TRY some of the recipes.
Joy in cooking,
© 2011-2013 The Saucy Southerner
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