• Southern staple

    It seems there is no in-between opinion about okra. You either love it or you hate it.

    Those who do love it are quick to extol its versatility and goodness, while the haters complain that the vegetable is slimy and unfit for human consumption.

  • Over Easy: Southern Cooking 101

    Today’s main story on Flair for Food about how to grow, buy and prepare okra made me hungry for other typically Southern dishes that are always in my recipe repertoire.

    For flavor, there is really nothing much better than Southern-style food and old time Southerners know how to spread out a feast for family and company.

  • Wines 'N' Such: Want a bubbly change? Try Italy’s Prosecco

    Show of hands, please! How many gentle readers know the difference between Champagne and
    Most likely answer: Both are bubbly wines — Champagne comes from France, while Prosecco is Italian.
    Correct to a point, but the major difference is the process whereby they achieve a fizzle. The French people refer to a certain wine product with bubbles as Champagne (capital “C”), which originates in a designated area about 90 miles due east of Paris — surprise — named Champagne.

  • The Amish Cook: Editor explains different Amish orders

    Editor’s note: Kevin Williams, editor of The Amish Cook, contributes this special column. Gloria Yoder will return next week.
    I wanted to step in this week to give Gloria a “summer break” and, more importantly, to thank readers for welcoming Gloria into your homes and lives over the past year.
    Gloria has been sharing with us now for a full year. How did 12 months slip by so speedily? I look forward to more educational and entertaining dispatches from Flat Rock, Illinois, in the future.

  • I scream, you scream ...

    They all scream for ice cream at Goodies in Homosassa, because the frozen treat is homemade on the premises in a multitude of flavors that delight both young and old.

  • Bodacious barbecue

    She doesn’t do shrimp on the barbie, but Australian native and owner of Fat Daddy’s Roadhouse in Crystal River is no stranger to smoking toothsome barbecue brisket, ribs and chicken.

  • Chill with super summer soups

    Perhaps the most esteemed chilled savory soup is vichyssoise and even the French name has allure, though it was actually created in America.

    Regardless, it and many other chilled soups provide refreshing treats on summer nights when a hot supper just doesn’t offer a respite from the heat.

  • Wines 'N' Such: The ‘finest’ wine is simply one you enjoy

    Many of the gentle people I speak with about wine are brand, spanking new to the topic. I was a new guy myself when I started drinking the stuff. In those days of the mid-1950s, the only decent selections were French. For American-harvested wine, it was the so-called dark ages.
    The labels said nothing about grapes and the origins were areas we rarely knew much about — Bordeaux, Burgundy, the Rhone, and so on.

  • The Amish Cook: The Amish wedding: Splendid affair enjoyed by all

    Editor’s Note: This is Part II of a two-part installment about attending an Amish wedding in Ohio. Dorcas Raber is Gloria Yoder’s mother.

    The wedding sermons held both encouragement and advice for the bridal pair, as well as for the rest of us. My Dad remarked in his sermon that he and my mom were married in the very same barn! My parents have been married for over 50 years.

  • The Amish Cook: Gloria takes her turn for church, serves rice casserole

    By Gloria Yoder


    It’s Monday morning. All is peacefully quiet around here. My husband, Daniel, went to work at

    5:45 and the children, Austin and Julia, are both sound asleep, so I decided to grab a pen in an attempt to put these quiet moments to good use.

    It looks like a busy day ahead. I have some last-minute odds and ends to tackle before our trip to Ohio tomorrow evening.