About Me

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,


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© 2011-2013 The Saucy Southerner

Copyright protections extend to all content (text and photography) on The Saucy Southerner, as allowed under U.S. Copyright laws.

All content (text and photography) contained on this site is the work of Paula Begley, unless otherwise noted. Any use of materials on this website, including reproduction, modification, distribution or republication, without the prior written consent of The Saucy Southerner, is strictly prohibited.

That said, I am happy to share should you ask me.  Please do so by contacting me: psbegley (at) gmail (dot) com.

35 Responses to About Me

  1. Melissa Belle Ford says:

    I love your story although I’ve known it for years! I’m so glad to be introduced to the Saucy Southerner….it’s like a dear old friend already! So glad to reconnect and so proud to be a member of the SS family now. I’m hooked! Bless you, dear one for sharing your passion with the rest of us <3! Bon appetit!

    • P~ says:

      Mel…you are just the most wonderful! Thank you for being here! A million hearts! AND! Credit where credit is due…YOU are the person responsible for me being “P”…so thank you! That moniker sure did stick! 😉 P~

  2. Neil Smith says:

    Hello “P”,
    It’s ironic that just two days ago Linda first told me about “The Saucy Southerner” and then here it is today mentioned in “Mr. Saucy’s” report. I can’t wait to try some of your recipes as soon as my kitchen is finished. One thing though: “Fish” is not included in your list of Categories. Seems a little odd considering…

    p.s. I really enjoy your writing style.

    • P~ says:

      Thank you, Neil. Happy to have you visit the site! I’d love to hear back from you here if you do try anything…I enjoy feedback. P~

  3. Micheal Volino says:

    Paula I never knew you were so into cooking. That is great and I wish I had more time to do some cooking myself. I did take some of your recipes and will try them sometime soon I hope. Hopefully we will see you at Troutfest again this year. Byron should have put you in his report sooner. Take care have a great winter. Mike/Linda from Florida

    • P~ says:

      Thank you, Mike! I really DO hope you try the recipes! And please, let me know what you think.

      Always look forward to seeing you and Linda! P~

  4. Paul Benzler says:

    I got this web address from your other business’ website I am intrigued by “Bacon Jam” Is the recipe on this site? It sounds awesome!

  5. Mary K says:

    I’m looking for the green salsa, please.

  6. Grouser says:

    Just went to your site for some inspiring “super bowl” fare and found so much I intend to try…….savored the looking. Thanks for sharing.

    Fish long and prosper.

  7. Linda says:

    hi there Saucy, I have been looking through your site (I found the link on another site and was intrigued) and have had fun looking through the recipes. Consequently I have nominate you for the Versatile Blogger Award. This way more people will be hearing and sharing in your recipe repertoire. Look here to see what its about and how you can share the award too: http://lapetitekitchen.wordpress.com/
    I look forward to trying your southern recipes.

    • P~ says:

      Thank you so much, Linda. I am honored by the nomination and your kind words.

      I wish you luck in your pursuit of ribbons…it was certainly fun for me; I plan on entering again this year.


  8. Sylvia says:

    So happy to be introduced to both you and your Saucy Southerner site. After meeting you and discovering your celebration of all recipes Southern-and-beyond, I’ll be a follower. Of course, your grits recipe is divine. Grits: What’s not to love? Also, as a site and fly fishing newcomer, I will also be searching for trout recipes. (May I have grits on the side, please, ma’am?)


    • P~ says:

      Sylvia! So thrilled you visited the site!! I spoke with your cohort on the phone the other day; what a delight you both are! Unfortunately, I don’t have any trout recipes on the site, as we seldom ever eat them. But I’ll try to find some at the market and come up with a smashing recipe for you.


  9. Margaret says:

    Can you please tell me where I can purchase a box of cod fish flakes, I have looked everywhere. I live in Frederick Maryland, Thank you

  10. mary k says:

    your are amazing!!! … work all day and create amazing food every night!
    I barely cook any more but reading your blog is quite inspiring.

  11. Just found your blog, its awesome! I like that you have ties to Julia, very often my go to source for how tos. I use to watch her on Tv too.

    • P~ says:

      I’m thrilled you found me, Thomas…and thank you for commenting. Julia was an inspiration to many and I learned/continue to learn so much from her. The world is a better place because she was in it. P~

  12. Diana W says:


    I wanted to let you know that I cooked your crock pot brisket and an oven brisket from another website the other night for a family get together. Your crock pot brisket won hands down. Everyone raved about how great it tasted and how tender it was. Thank you for sharing this recipe. It will definetly be one that I will keep for years to come and enjoy 🙂

  13. Kelly says:

    I am seriously bummed that I have only now come across your site. It’s great! I’ll be attempting a brisket inspired by this one tomorrow up here in the land of ice and snow, aka Minnesota. I’ll be certain to come back and read your delicious posts!

    • Oh, Kelly…your comment made me smile. Please don’t be bummed…you’re here now! And thank you! Also, given the winter we have had down here in Tennessee, you have my sympathy. Truly. Brisket should make it all better!* Welcome! P~

      *It won’t really, nothing but Spring will, but it’s the best I could do. *wink*

  14. Dawn says:

    Shortbread (Lemon Blackberry Cream Napoleons); this recipe is not to be found, I clicked on it in the index and got a roast; tried by search and got the index; can you please tell me where to find it?
    Thank you

  15. Jason Drotar says:

    I was talking with your husband today at the Fly Shop, he directed me to your page. Great site with wonderful photos. I’m looking forward to seeing all the amazing things to come!

  16. southandbone says:

    Hi! We are Southern girls, bloggers who have just stumbled across your site in our search for a crab cake recipe. A category on our blog is “Bone Lickin’ Good.” This is where we post recipes that are indicative of Southern cooking. This week, we will post your recipe. Of course, we will give you full credit and include a link to your site.

  17. Sandra (Sandy) Nelson says:

    Hi P!

    Larry and I were in the shop last weekend and most surprised to learn that you have a cooking blog. Your card was given to me , and I’m in heaven reading your recipes! I hope that Dubbin is acting as your sous chef or official taster. We missed seeing you and Byron in the shop, but extend our best wishes to you both for your new career! I’ll be telling Travis that you have traded in your fly rod for a whisk!

    Sandy Nelson up in the hills of Kingsport, TN

  18. kim steuernagel says:

    do you have a newsletter or email sign up. if you do, please count me in. thank you!

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