s
Notes
Family Tradition: Four Generations of Cooks

Many of you remember Melissa Carden, my Commissary Director for several years at VeryVera. Melissa and her husband headed to Birmingham with The Southern Company and she and I have remained in constant contact, especially regarding all things FOOD. I couldn’t resist sharing this sweet picture of her 3-year-old Mae Margaret sporting the apron that Melissa wore as a child. Her grandmother Ruth Roberts is a wonderful cook and great grandmother Nell McBrayer was the family cooking-inspiration. Nell McBrayer even has a family cookbook in her honor, Fine Southern Recipes McBrayer’s Grocery, edited by Melissa and written by her sister Aimee. I’m not sure if there are still copies for sell, but it is a GREAT cookbook. I have used many of the recipes myself and have featured quite a few on The VeryVera Show.

We Are Family!
Vera & Siblings, Family Reunion

I'm sure many of you have had opportunities over the summer to reunite with family members. I just returned from seeing all of my brothers and sisters and a few of the nieces/nephews and their children. What a wonderful time we had catching up, reminiscing, and telling on each other. I've lost count of the number of times I heard, "I never knew that!" 

The years may have changed our appearance, but our personalities remain the same. I am so very grateful for our hosts Bitsy, Jeff, Harry, and Vern. In case you have forgotten the namesakes of those delicious VeryVera pound cakes, here they are, listed by birth order: Bitsy (Amaretto Pound), Trip (Lemon Crisp), Vera (Chocolate), Harry (Old Fashioned), and Lou (Cream Cheese).

Each sibling will get an opportunity to write a blurb about his or her cake in my upcoming cookbook . . . as long as the stories do not involve tales about little Vera!

 

Vera Stewart

2014 June Cooking Camps Report Card

How did the June Sessions of Cooking Camp go? Beyond what I could have imagined--they were absolutely splendid! I have received so many kind notes and emails, including this one from Angel, the mother of Kayla who was one of our VeryVera Summer Cooking Camp Campers of the Week! This email just warmed my heart. 



"We are very proud of Kayla and her accomplishments . . . Kayla wants to be a chef and own her own restaurant so this really inspires her . . .Thanks so much for continuing to organize this camp. She really enjoys it. We will definitely see you next year in the Advanced Class."

I just cannot express how much joy I receive working with and teaching these kids about cooking, and how proud I am of all of my campers. Congrats to you, boys and girls, for a job well done! Each and every one of you received an A+ in my book.

 

~ Vera Stewart

THE Summer Must-Have Item

What will all the cool kids be wearing this Summer? One of these . . .

I am proud to present the new VeryVera Summer 2014 Cooking Camp tees, designed by the team at Wier/Stewart! Each child who attends camp receives a free shirt, recipes, cooking instructions, and much, much more. The first camp is only one week away, so be sure to register today before we are sold out!

June 9 - Beginner Class
June 16 - Pre-Beginner Class
June 23 - Intermediate Class

July 14 - Beginner Class
July 21 - Advanced Beginner Class
July 28 - Advanced Class

*The Beginners, Advanced Beginners, and Intermediate Classes run from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.; Pre-Beginners Class runs from 9:00 a.m. to noon. Every child attending camp must fill out a registration form. If you need a form, please email Nicole@veryvera.com and she will email you one! Register on our website: www.veryvera.com

What Time Is it?
It's VeryVera Cooking Camp time! Well, almost . . . I just cannot believe that this is our 11th year and that the first camp starts next month - June 9! 

Our Summer classes will be limited to 18 students and we have four rooms that will be utilized with groups of 6 working together. The Beginners, Advanced Beginners, and Intermediate Classes run from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.; Pre-Beginners Class runs from 9:00 a.m. to noon. Each week is described in the schedule on our website. Please sign up using the DEPOSIT product and pay the BALANCE DUE the week before camp. You can pay for both at once, if you'd like.

Space is limited, so be sure to register today on our website: www.veryvera.com. And remember, we have a new location: The Cottage, 2708 Wheeler Road, behind the old Wife Saver on Highland Avenue. Parking available in that lot.
A Masters Week Tradition: The Green Jacket Salad

½ cup vegetable oil

1/3 cup red wine vinegar

1 Roma tomato, diced

1 teaspoon Lawry's seasoned salt

1 teaspoon dried oregano

¼ cup chopped green onion, about 1 onion (use lots of green top)

¼ cup chopped fresh parsley

2 12-oz bags prepared Iceberg and Romaine salad greens

1 pita bread, split in half, toasted and broken into bite-size pieces or Naked Brand Pita Chips

Parmesan cheese for garnish

 

Combine vegetable oil, vinegar, seasoned salt and oregano in a wooden salad bowl and mix with a flat bottom spoon. Add in green onion, tomato and parsley and continue to grind and stir until thoroughly mixed. Place greens and Pita chips and toss until well-coated.

Happy Birthday to Jones!
Happy “BIG” Birthday to my husband, Andy (Jones) Kilpatrick. When we married, I found this picture in an old frame behind another photograph. I went nuts over this picture because he has truly not changed . . . that sparkle with a little bit of mischief in his eyes is just so “Jones.”
Happy Birthday Jones! I love you!
Remembering Ronnie

Ronnie

Each year as my birthday approaches, I remember how Ronnie and I used to joke about our February birthdays--how we were probably meant to be friends because we both had such hard heads and that people used to wonder why we were always together. He always called me baby, unless he was mad at me and then it was Ms. Stewart! A VeryVera event wasn’t complete without Ronnie. Nothing was planted in my yard without him and you could easily find us from day break until dusk when it was time to plant pansies, impatiens, or spread pine straw for the season. Work just wasn’t work when Ronnie was around.

I’ll never forget that call on December 23, 2007 saying that Ronnie had been rushed to the hospital. When I left work on Christmas Eve, I went straight to Doctor’s Hospital ICU and waited until I could go in. I held his hand and although he didn’t seem to know I was there….my heart tells me he did. He never woke back up. Ronnie died 2 days after my birthday on February 23. I think of him, especially during the month of February, and on this today. I can’t plant pansies in my yard to this day…just because those were ours. But this year I’m making a pledge to bring those back. This fall when everyone starts preparing their pansy beds, I’m going to prepare ours. I think Ronnie will be proud of my decision, and I promise that I will do my best to remember all his little tricks he used to use to guarantee that ours will look the best in town! 

You’re still a big part of my life, Ronnie. I miss you and will always love you.

Vera

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