Every year my family, along with all my extended family, would gather at Granny Jones house — an old, large house that had room for everyone. The family would gather for a long weekend of good Southern food, lots of dominos and, of course, the Dallas Cowboys game. I bet there were over 30 family members there. Aunts, uncles, cousins, and friends. But some of my greatest memories of that time were of all of the ladies in the large kitchen cooking for everyone. I would often go in ask if they needed help and they were always eager to show me how to peel potatoes, help mix the dressing even get the turkey ready for the oven.
That was some 40 years ago but when I look back now, the reason I asked to help when all the other kids were outside playing was I already had a love of cooking. It is during this time that I learned the secret to good cooking is to use the freshest ingredients and keep it simple – something I still try to do today, even in my BBQ competitions.