The Plan to Eat Podcast

#44 Preserving Family Recipes with Christina Gibson of CreateMyCookbook

December 07, 2022 Plan to Eat Season 1 Episode 44
#44 Preserving Family Recipes with Christina Gibson of CreateMyCookbook
The Plan to Eat Podcast
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The Plan to Eat Podcast
#44 Preserving Family Recipes with Christina Gibson of CreateMyCookbook
Dec 07, 2022 Season 1 Episode 44
Plan to Eat

Christina has worked with CreateMyCookbook since 2018 and is now the Director of Growth, managing the activities that ensure its customers are able to preserve their family recipes and memories.

She believes that food is love and that family and community are best served around a good meal. Christina loves working with a community that allows individuals, communities, and organizations to easily create a bookstore-quality cookbook worthy of any kitchen, full of recipes to be shared.

Our conversation with Christina centered around preserving family recipes as a way to preserve family memories. We loved connecting with Christina and hope you enjoy this interview!

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Show Notes Transcript

Christina has worked with CreateMyCookbook since 2018 and is now the Director of Growth, managing the activities that ensure its customers are able to preserve their family recipes and memories.

She believes that food is love and that family and community are best served around a good meal. Christina loves working with a community that allows individuals, communities, and organizations to easily create a bookstore-quality cookbook worthy of any kitchen, full of recipes to be shared.

Our conversation with Christina centered around preserving family recipes as a way to preserve family memories. We loved connecting with Christina and hope you enjoy this interview!

Create your own cookbook:

Sign up for a free trial + get 20% off your first annual subscription:
Contact us:

Connect with us:


I'm Riley and I'm Roni. And this is the plan to eat podcast, where we have conversations about meal planning, food, and wellness. To help you answer the question what's for dinner. 

Roni: Hello and welcome to another episode of the Plan to Eat podcast today our interview is with Christina Gibson. She is the Director of Growth at Create My Cookbook. She's worked with Create My Cookbook since 2018, and she manages the activities that ensure their customers are able to preserve their family recipes and memory.

Riley: Our conversation with Christina today centered a lot about the importance of preserving recipes, um, how to use their program to do it, uh, and we bonded over some southern traditions and had a great conversation about our love of recipes. Hope you enjoy the show. 


Roni: Hi Christina. Thanks for joining us on the podcast today. We appreciate you being.

Christina: Hi. Thanks so much for having me. I'm excited to be here.

Riley: [00:01:00] Yeah. So we just wanna jump right in. Why don't you tell us a little bit more about you and what you do.

Christina: Yeah. So, um, I work at create, my cookbook, I've been with the company for about five years. I'm the director of growth. Um, and at Create, my cookbook, we help families turn their family recipes into the well deserved cookbooks that they should be. So, you know, Basically think photo books, but for recipes. So you've got, you know, all your family recipes and we're gonna get those into a cookbook for you.

Roni: So how does that work exactly? So people have their, like grandma's cookbooks or you know, handwritten recipes and then they put 'em into your program and you guys create a cookbook for 'em. Like what's that process look?

Christina: Right. So most of the time people are starting with the recipe box, and this usually is inherited from gr, not always. And we have a service where they can take pictures of the recipe cards. We type those up, the. Back. Um, and then they, we have an online designer that they use to create a [00:02:00] family cookbook.

Um, but there are many ways to get recipes, from, you know, some families, don't have a recipe box and they just have 'em from memory. So, you know, having to ask, you know, mom and dad and aunts and uncle's for recipes. So we have a function for that as well. Um, and some people have recipes at a Google Doc, wherever your recipes.

That's not a problem. It's getting them into your online recipe box with us and then designing your cookbook, which is, you know, laying out into the pages and adding photos. Not every res, not every cookbook has. Food recipes, uh, food photos, excuse me. Most of 'em have photos of family, so they'll include some pictures of grandma and the, the, um, nieces and nephews and things like that.

So as far from the most simplest of terms though, if you have family recipes, you can create a book. If you want to add photos and stories, then we can help you do that as well.

Riley: That's really neat. It feels like something, because I'm thinking about when I printed, like my wedding album. I printed one for myself and I printed one for [00:03:00] my mom and I printed one for my mother-in-law. Because I just thought that they would like them . And so I think that this feels like a similar process.

It's, um, you get to make it and then you can, you can print as many as you want, right?

Christina: Absolutely. Um, you can print as many as you want, you can make different variations. What we often see is you'll have, you know, you'll make your first book and it's the family helo piece. Um, and people will, they'll print a copy for everyone in the family. We also see people go in and make variations.

So when someone gets married, they will kind of pick a handful of recipes to kind of like as a wedding gift. Or, you know, you'll have, for me, I have the Gibson side, which is my husband's side. I have a CookBook for them. And then I have the Riley's, which is my side of the family. And I have recipes from them.

And then eventually one day I'll make one for my daughter, which will include both recipes. So once you get the recipes in the recipe box, you can do lots of different things, uh, just depending on who you're gifting to.

Riley: Oh, that's really [00:04:00] neat.

Roni: I love that.

we wanted to have you on the podcast because we also love the idea of preserving recipes, preserving family recipes, and just like the memories that those things hold. Um, so can you talk to us a little bit about like what it means to your customers to be able to preserve these recipes in the cookbooks?

Christina: Absolutely. So when we think of a recipe, you know, at the simplest of terms, a recipe's, just a list of ingredients, um, and. Prepare that recipe. But for families, and when we talk about family recipes, it's really so much more the family recipe. The really core of it is the story behind it. The person who created that recipe, why we eat this recipe when we eat it, and how we celebrate it.

And so for these families when we're, when they're creating a family cookbook, they're kind of reliving a lot of memories in the kitchen and they're often reliving memories with mom or grandma. And so it's a very, um, a very [00:05:00] emotional process for many of our customers. And so, and, and we love it when it's celebrating the life of grandma, but it often can be done in to celebrate in memorialize Grandma, we, we see that as well.

But yeah, so it can be, you know, great, it's great to have the recipe, but really, um, creating the book is more about the memories in the kitchen.

Riley: It feels like. A bit of a healing process maybe for some of your customers.

Christina: It really is. It really is. We have, you know, I've seen this time and time again where grandma has passed and someone has inherited the recipe box, and then they go to create a family cookbook and you know, them. They're getting, they're getting that one more chance to sit with grandma. They're, they're, they're inputting those recipes.

They're thinking about those, those times. They're talking about the time that grandma made this cake or that pie, or how, oh gosh, how they loved it. And then what's really great, we take it a step further. Not only are they getting [00:06:00] to relive that, they're actually getting to keep that alive for the next generation.

So now grandma's not gonna make the pecan pie, but I am, and it's gonna become part of my story. And my story's gonna be to teach my daughter that, like, you know, my grandmother made this pecan pie for Thanksgiving. We now make the pecan pie. So we're keeping, you know, not only the memories, but we're kinda keeping the legacy of those family members alive.

Um, and so it can, it's a really beautiful process.

Roni: Right. Yeah. It makes me just think about my own grandma. My own grandma is an amazing cook and baker. Uh, she somehow knows how to do it all. . . And I can just think there are so many times when, you know, like I'm texting my mom or I'm texting my aunt being like, Hey, something, something grandma's recipe for, you know, those pancakes or for whatever.

And would it be so much easier if there were just in a cookbook already? I need to get on this and just ask my grandma for her recipes and I come into a cookbook,

Christina: Absolutely. [00:07:00] I. I'll tell you, it's a funny story. Today is actually my birthday. Um, and I.

Roni: birthday. What?

Christina: you. It is, so I was born on Thanksgiving Day, um, and so it's like, you know, it changes every year, but my, like my birthday cake is pecan pie, like it, every year I get pecan pie for my, uh, for my birthday, and it is, It is like a funny running tradition by my grandmother.

She passed a few years ago, but she's like, your, like she's just, she was a seamstress and she would bake and she did all these funny things. Um, and every year she made, and I always like was a little bit of a brat about it. As a kid, we had the Thanksgiving pecan pie and then we had my birthday cake for going by.

So I always insisted that she made two. Um, and so every year, um, I'd be like, this is, we would put candles in it and everything. By pecan pie. And to this day, like my husband will now make my grandmother's recipe pecan pie [00:08:00] on my birth. And so it's just like, for me, I have that recipe now. You know, it's easy access for him and it's a way for us to celebrate and kind of have fun with with that and share it with my daughter cuz she never got to meet her.

And so it's like tonight we're like, we're gonna have pecan pie and we're gonna talk about grandmother

Riley: That's awesome. As somebody who also has a birthday near holidays, um, you have to kind of fight for your Right. You know,

Roni: Ha.

Christina: You do,

Riley: just, I'm just playing. But you get to own your second pecan pie because,

um, birthdays around holidays get lumped together.

Christina: Mm-hmm. ? Mm-hmm.

Riley: I'm just playing. I probably shouldn't say that as a 32 year old woman, but I still want my own cake too, so

Christina: Yeah. You have to have your own pecan pie. Like I'm not sharing it like you can go have the thanksgiving pie but this is mine.

Riley: Totally. That's awesome. I love that story. And it really just connects, I mean, so I mean, I'm thinking about my grandmother and, and things. She's made me for my birthday, cuz mine's close to holidays too. And [00:09:00] there's this special aspect of having a birthday close to a holiday because you get to spend it with your family.

Christina: Mm-hmm.

Riley: Um, you know, there's obviously some downsides of, you know, lumping 'em all together, but, but it is special because forever and ever. My grandmother also would make this chocolate pound cake and it was amazing. Chocolate pound cake, chocolate frosting. It's the best. It can't be reproduced though, . Because, Well, one, I live at a high altitude and it just is not the same

Christina: Right.

Riley: two, it just, it never tastes as good as when she made it.

Um, I think some of that was just like that heart memory of just like the way that her making it was so special, you know? Uh, so I love that story that you have that's so similar to mine.

Christina: I agree. And it's so crazy and I joke, but it is interesting how. I think things taste different in different environments and I, and I have a joke, I'm like, it's the water. Like when you bake, I'm like, it's that, you know, like we have that good Southern Water , but it is something about that person making it.

Um, and you try to [00:10:00] get as close as you can, but it's never exactly grandma, but, you know, we can, we can get really close.

Riley: Yeah, I mean, you know, baking is supposedly this science and everything has to be like perfectly measured, but I don't care. I can't make it the same way she made it.

Christina: Yes. It's also when you make it yourself, like you had you to do all that work, but when grandma did it for you, you're just getting to enjoy the fruits of her labor.

Riley: Maybe that's it. Maybe it tastes better when somebody else makes it, but I'm not, I'm not a baker. Yeah.

Christina: Yeah, exactly. Have your husband make it and see how you like it.

Roni: There you go.

Riley: a great idea.

Christina: So are you a Thanksgiving baby or a uh, Christmas baby?

Riley: my birthday's in a little less than a week, so, um, Thanksgiving. So, I mean, you know, I wasn't gonna say that cuz I didn't wanna take away from your birthday at all.

Christina: That's okay. . You can have, you can have some of pie.

Riley: thank you. That's sweet.

Roni: So when [00:11:00] we talked to you before, one of the things that I really loved that you brought up, um, was the idea. Not only preserving recipes and memories, preserving recipes for preserving their memories, we also just talked about actually physically preserving memories, right? Because grandma's handwriting eventually like that, those pen strokes are gonna disappear on the paper or like potentially something terrible is going to happen and you're going to lose your recipes. You mentioned talking about like Hurricane Katrina and your own family's experience with that. I'd really love for you to talk a little bit about.

Christina: yeah, absolutely. So you know, When it comes to creating these books, there is, it's so important. Often if we don't have grandma who's written it down. You know, if she passes and that, that, that recipe, that memory, that tradition is gone. Um, but let's just say even if it is written down, you're still kind of at a risk, and have been from the Gulf and the child of Katrina.

Um, you know, [00:12:00] we all just witnessed and, and we lost so much and we often lost the paper. Grandma's handwriting had written, had written all these, you know, recipes and the photos and things like that. And so for me personally, it's a big passion of making sure that we have these things documented. Making sure, you know, I love when families include photos of the recipe cards.

So you'll have the top of the page has, you know, it typed up beautifully and the bottom is the photo of grandma's handwriting and it's her card and it's digitally preserved. You know, we print books also having it digitally. is so important because unfortunately we do live in a world where there are hurricanes and forest fires and house fires, and once you lose those things, they're gone.

Um, and it's really hard to get them back. Um, And yes, when I was, when I was in middle school, we had Katrina and, and you know, there was a good bit of loss there. Um, and I've, interesting enough, my parents now live in Texas and they moved there, retired. And [00:13:00] um, my mom had a bunch of photos and recipes, um, and then Harvey hit and they lost.

They had again, had flooding and all those things were lost, and that was really hard. Um, luckily we did have our recipes preserved and we had most of the photos backed up, but we did lose quite a few that you just, you don't get those. 

Roni: mm. 

Christina: that's hard. Um, and it, it's sad. And so you want all families to kind of have that, and we kind of have, um, our ceo, Brian, he's always saying, he's like, I really don't care how people preserve their family recipes, whether they use us, don't use us.

It's just so important that they do . 

Um, because we see, you know, it, it from a historical standpoint, from a family standpoint, um, you know, it's just so important.

Riley: there. I don't, I'm not a super nostalgic person, but there's two things that I'm very nostalgic about and it's photos and recipes, and so like when I think about that kind of experience or that kind of tragedy happening, it's like those are the things I'm gonna go and grab if I [00:14:00] even can. Cuz you know, sometimes, You don't have an opportunity for that.

And so I love that this is a program that really allows for that and allows for family photos to be included and recipe card photos to be included. Um, you know, at Plan to Eat we. Love digitally preserving people's recipes for the same reason, just because it's a digital copy. And so if something ever were to happen, uh, you know, they can go back and print another cookbook out of create my cookbook.

They could have 'em digitally saved somewhere else. Like just doing that so that those things are not lost, um, so that you can pass them down. Um, that's a really special thing that we get to do for people.

Christina: That is really special, and I love that you guys are, we kinda, we share that mission, we share that, um, understanding of the importance for people. And people don't realize how important that is until it happens to them, unfortunately, until they're the ones who do we all live in. That mindset of that could never happen to me.

And then when it does, then you realize and you know it's gone. Like there's nothing you [00:15:00] can do. But then you realize exactly how important it.

Roni: Mm. So on the Create My Cookbook website. You guys have a great blog that has lots of different recipes on it. Who's the person who writes all these recipes for you guys?

Christina: So this is, these recipes are submitted by our users. They are true community recipes. You know, we ask people, You know, if they don't have to, but of course if they want to share one of their family recipes, we will post it to the blog and it's great. Um, What I love about this is these are, these are recipes that aren't created in some fancy kitchen.

These are recipes created with love in a kitchen with grandma or with mom. And, you know, they're real, they're real family recipes. Um, they're not perfect. They're not, they're not, you know, they don't, it is a true. And the, it's like, it's like a window into someone's life. It's a window into their kitchen when you get to see these.

And that's what I love about them. I've actually created quite a [00:16:00] few of them. I think they're wonderful and they're great. Um, but it's also really fun to create a recipe from one of our users and get to see like how things are differently done in other families. Um, so that's what I really do love our, our recipes on our blog.

Riley: The holidays really highlight the differences in the way that people make things differently. I think especially, um, if you're married or if you are, you know, you have a. Close family that you have Thanksgiving with some kind of relationship where you're having Thanksgiving or Christmas or another holiday meal with another group of people because what they want to have is not what you want to have.

So I'm, I'm from the south just like you are. My husband is not, and we just got back from Thanksgiving with his family and they like. Pick on me for the things that I wanna have at Thanksgiving, or they make fun of it or think it's weird. And I think the same thing about what they have. Um, I don't know what that is or why you're eating it,

and so it's fun that, I love that though, because you grow up in [00:17:00] this family and you think that this is the right way, right way to do a holiday or do a recipe. But it's not necessarily the right way. There's other recipes that are just as delicious. It's just not the way you grow doing it.

Christina: It is interesting when you get married. So, um, my husband and I we're high school sweethearts and, but we're from like, we're from Mobile County and like on the Gulf, but I grew up a little further north than his family. And so I remember going to his first Thanksgiving and I thought Turkey, like that's what you have at Thanksgiving is Turkey.

No, not in Bayou La Batre. Alabama, Bayou La Batre, Alabama. You have gumbo. That is what you have Thanksgiving. And so I got through and I was like, I'll get you a bowl of gumbo. And I was like, what? And I do like gumbo, but I just don't think of it as Thanksgiving. So for your husband, did he have stuffing or dressing?

Riley: Stuffing.

Christina: Oh, what is wrong with him?

Riley: I know it's dressing. What are you about, Roni? Okay. You're, you're,

Roni: We have stuffing. We have stuffing. I'm, [00:18:00] yeah, I'm the, uh, the odd personnel over here cuz I grew up in Colorado. We have stuffing. Is there a difference between stuffing and dressing as far as how you make them?

Christina: Yeah.

Riley: Stuffing is like dry pieces of bread,

Christina: Yeah.

Roni: So stuffing is like actually stuffed inside of the Turkey is dressing made outside of

Riley: It's made outside of the Turkey.

Roni: Okay, interesting. I've never had it, I don't think I've ever had it that way cuz it's, we always just take it out of the Turkey and

Riley: I'll make it for you.

Christina: yeah, it's, it's, it's, it's amazing. And it's also made, I think, I think stuffing is made from like white bread. We make dressing from cornbread. Like you make a pan of cornbread and then you lease my family. We let it dry out overnight and then we break it up and then we make the dressing. Um, but yeah, some people have stuffing.

I didn't even know that was a thing until a few years ago. I was like, what are these people entering? Stuffing? And

Roni: Okay. Well, I was today years old when I learned that stuffing and dressing are different. So don't feel bad

Christina: Great, great.

Riley: Oh, it's too [00:19:00] funny. And the, this is the, this is so fun though, to me because, I mean, you can kind of make, you know, I got picked on at Thanksgiving, so it's fine cuz I'm a cranberry sauce out of the can kind of person and not a cranberry relish person. What about you,

Christina: I have no idea what cranberry relish is, 

Riley: Okay, this is what,

Roni: well wait, is cranberry Relish the one that's like a more chunky and it's not the like gel ? Cause I like, I like the gel out of the can.

Riley: That's exciting. 

Christina: Yeah. I

want it to like tickle. Yeah.

Riley: So cranberry relish, I just made it with my mother-in-law is cranberries and sugar and orange zest or orange rind, maybe whole orange. I think we put in whole chunks of orange and you pulse it together like with a food processor 

Roni: Oh. 

Riley: it's like a fruity, chunky, fruity salad thing. It's a relish. It's essentially, it's relish, cranberry relish.

It's the same texture as like pickle relish,

Roni: Oh, interest.

Riley: but it's cranberries and oranges and sugar. Um, and so yeah, so my husband's family does [00:20:00] cranberry relish. I do cranberry sauce out of the can and all of it's gelatinous glory.

Christina: have. I love that you just said gelatinous because there were the jello. Do you know how many recipes we have with jello? It is like at I first started, I was like, oh, I had no idea. And you see it all the time. We, we ran, we just for fun. One day we running numbers on, cause we have like over 5 million recipes have been entered.

And so our, and so we were like, okay, like what are the most common? And some of the funny things that came out of that study were the most common author name for a recipe is mom. And not like the name, not, no, just mom. That's what people enter. Mom. Um, and then we had like over 50,000 recipes with the ingredient jello, and I was like, wow.

Who knew there was so many uses for Jello? 

Riley: That's so fun.

Roni: Well see. That seems like a very Midwest thing to me, right? Like Midwest families that have all [00:21:00] their different jello fruit salad things that they eat for different holiday occasions. We have a couple of those in my family, because my family grew up in Kansas. But um, I've, I have friends who are like, oh, you don't not have the jello salad when you have Thanksgiving,

Christina: what? That's crazy. I mean, I've actually never tried it, so I can't, again, it's one of those things when you haven't tried it, you can't judge. But, um, I mean, I also really like, I, I live off grits and you, you're shocked when people don't know what a grit is. I'm like, do you guys want some grits for breakfast?

And they're like, what? Like, oh, it's delicious. We have it every day.

Riley: Okay. See, I'm living, I, I live in Colorado now. I'm not living in the south, and these kinds of little surprises to me are so, I love connecting with you over this because yeah, I have to explain what grits are and I don't really feel like they're explainable. Um, but it's fun. It's funny,

Christina: It is fun. The only thing that drives me crazy about grits [00:22:00] is if you go to a fancy restaurant, it's like southern cuisine and they charge $20 for a plate of grits. And I'm like, no, this is poor people food. You need to like, why are we charging $20 for a plate of grits? This is crazy. Um, but yes, like everyone should try grits.

If you haven't tried grits and you don't want the instant ones, just they're not hard to make. Just get regular grits, add some butter, add some cheese. You can add whatever you want. They're amazing.

Riley: They're really a blank slate for a lot of things.

Christina: They really are. And they're so, they're so tasty.

Roni: Okay, but so do you guys like your grits a little more firm gelatin, or do you like your grits runny?

Riley: I personally like mine, runny.

Christina: I think it depends on like how, what we're eating them with. So like, oh, that's hard. Cause if you put egg, like if you're doing like running eggs and it's too running, then it just turns into soup. But, If we're eating it, like my husband will make them, will eat them with fish. You want 'em a little more, you know, a little more.


Roni: Yeah, [00:23:00] so I, um, previous to working for Plan to Eat, I worked for Cajun Creole restaurant here for seven years, and I had to explain grits to people a lot. And I also got a lot of people who were from the south who would be like, I can't believe that you guys let people put sugar or maple syrup in their grits.

Like, that should not be

Christina: No

Riley: Save grits only

Roni: Yeah.

Christina: Grits aren't meant to be sweet

Roni: Yeah. I, but I think a lot of people, you know, uh, maybe like if I can consider myself a westerner, whatever, you know, we're used to eating like a sweet oatmeal or something, you know, like oatmeal with like raisins and like brown sugar or something like that. I think that a lot of people who are not experience, have not experienced like southern grits.

They just think, oh, I'll just make it like I made my oatmeal.

Christina: Oh,

Roni: you're Riley, If your Riley Riley also eats her oatmeals as a savory

Riley: Savory.

Christina: Oh, that's funny. No, I, no, that's where we differ because I need, like, money turns into a dessert bowl , [00:24:00] like it's not really, it's not even a hardy breakfast. By the time I'm added all my toppings and my sugar and it's dessert for breakfast.

Riley: Well, let me explain. So the same reason that people would not know why or like what grits are or how you should have them, like, should they be sweet? Are they savory? When I didn't need grits growing up, ever. I, sorry. So sorry. I did not eat oatmeal growing up ever. So when I, cuz my husband's a big fan, , I was like, okay, I'm gonna give these oatmeal, this oatmeal thing a try.

I just made it the way I like things, which is more savory. So now I like savory oatmeal too, so it's weird.

Christina: I have that is That's hilarious. You need to write that recipe down in the story as to why you are the only person who eats savory overall

Riley: The only one in the world. That's it. Just wipe the slate. I'm the only one

Christina: You might be onto something. It's kind of like the bacon on the peanut butter sandwich that people are like, it's [00:25:00] weird, but it's actually very good. And you think, no thank you, and then you do it and you're like, you know, it's weird, but it's actually very good. Maybe that's your savory oatmeal.

Riley: It is. I'll make it for everyone.

Christina: There you go.

Roni: So I loved what you said earlier about the recipes that were on your guys' blog and just you said that they're not. You know, recipes that were professionally created or made in some professional kitchen. They're just the recipes from the people who enter their recipes into your website. And it made me kind of like you saying that made me think about a couple years ago with Plan to Eat during the holidays, we did, um, like a cookie exchange, a virtual cookie exchange.

And so our customers sent us their cookie recipes. We put 'em into an account on the website so people could connect with them. There are so many cookie recipes in the that account that have basically zero instructions. Like it's just the old way of, you know, like your grandma or your great grandma, they just knew how to make the [00:26:00] recipe.

They didn't need the directions. And so like literally the directions would be like, mix the ingredients, bake for eight minutes. You're like, okay. And so I could just imagine there are quite a few recipes like that, that you guys have too, that it's just there was this old knowledge about cooking and baking that, you know, they didn't need a, a recipe that had 15 different steps.

They just knew how to do everything.

Christina: that is so true, and you can, I. I'm gonna say this and I can't like back it up with any true facts, but I swear you could date a recipe based off the number of directions in the recipe, um, because you're right, there's something to. You know, older recipes and, and, and let's be, let's, let's just be honest.

Most of the time the cooking was done by women and this knowledge was just passed down and they knew like you mix the wet ingredients first and then you add the dry. Like, I didn't even know that. So it's interesting because sometimes, you know, I'm all more like leaving it exactly how grandma wrote it [00:27:00] until grandma didn't write anything.

And then I'm like, okay. Parenthesis. Here's how all of us who are oblivious and brand new to the kitchen, here's how we make it. Because you're right, it'll just be a list of ingredients. That'll be like mixed. Well bake it three 50, you're like, oh. If anyone's ever seen the Great British Breaking Show where they give them like the list of directions and they purposely leave out like half of them.

That's how I feel like and go. Um, and so it is interesting. We do have to like write into the, when someone submits one, we have to say, we do have to ask questions. Often it's like, Hey, uh, and it's okay because they're not professionally trained and they don't even realize it. They're like, yeah, that's just how you do it.

And it's like, well, I didn't know that neither anyone. . Um, but you know, so it's like, hey, exactly what order would you like these ingredients in? Or things like that. And then it's really interesting. You can always tell you guys, understand this, I don't, uh, I get tickled to death, you know, when someone's [00:28:00] from Colorado because there's the high altitude instructions instruct.

Support will be like, this is for high altitude only. Like, they don't provide it to anyone else. I'm like, that's a very small subsection of people who can use.

Riley: It's not, though. It's not a small subsection this really just backs up the importance of preserving family recipes. I think because everything we're talking about feels like a lost art in some ways. And I just, uh, if we don't write these recipes down, we've, everything's gotten convenient and everything has gotten pre-done for us. And I think that we, there's this element of like, we have to write them down.

We have to pass them down, or this special way of cooking that our ancestors did, um, we're gonna lose it. Um, and I think we've lost it in some ways. And I think that, um, it's something that kind of comes up on the podcast a lot when we talk to people. you know, buying a whole chicken and processing it [00:29:00] yourself.

Your grandma probably had a chicken in her yard and she got it and processed the whole process. . Um, but you know, when I get a chicken, I'm always thinking I, maybe I should call my mom , just ask her for some tips. Um, that's a little bit of a joke cuz I, I have, I've learned a lot, but I still call my mom all the time to ask her how to do something or, you know, one of my grandmother's, the pound cake I was talking about the original recipe for the frosting calls for olio.

And, and I love the recipe. It's in my grandmother's handwriting. It's beautiful and I know now. That, that's butter. Um, but I used to have to call my mom and be like, remind me, what's this? What is this ingredient? 

Christina: Not only is it important to write them down, but I think it's important to create these dishes. Um, cuz the first step is, you know, writing it down and having it. But like you said, like there is something to recreating these dishes and, and celebrating them. And I mean, I. I do, I will purposely call my [00:30:00] mom rather.

You could probably Google your way through anything, but there's something great of being able to pick up the phone and call your mom and say like, mom, what is this? And it starts this conversation and it's like a great way to connect. Um, we love to connect over food, especially, you know, you and I are talking, we're both originally from Alabama.

We both live in states that are very different now. Um, and. Just because of the way the world is, like we're further apart. And so it's really great when you get to reconnect and talk on the phone and talk about these things. And it's, it's, I've come to realize it's such a common theme for recipes to be something that just keeps bringing us back together.

Um, you know, when you grew in the south, you had Sunday dinner, you were always at the table. We don't have that anymore. But I catch myself on the phone with my mom on Sundays often when I'm recreating a meal. And so in some weird way, a recipe has yet again brought the family back to the dinner table, whether it be virtually, whether it be in that presence.

Um, and so it's kind of a magical thing and it's [00:31:00] magical. And then we get to talk about grandmother, our great-grandmother, all those things. So it, it, it's be.


I love that. That makes me, I, um, this year I was in charge of making our pumpkin pie. We have pumpkin pie, not pe, not pecan pie. I almost said. Okay. I'm really sorry. Uh, Anyways, I was in charge of making the pumpkin pie and you know, I was following the directions for the recipe that I had, but I still called my mom to be like, but wait, mom, do you do it differently than this?

Because sometimes, you know, even if your mom gives you her recipe or grandma's recipe or whatever, there's still sometimes where they're like, yeah, what's written down that way? But we don't do it like that. So I don't know why, but, but I do love that you brought that up, that it is recipes and food are just a great chance even if you're not in person with the people who you know, like brought you these recipes, that there's still a great opportunity to reconnect and um, an excuse to pick up the phone.

Cuz I think often we just, you know, our lives get busy and we let [00:32:00] things go. So 

Christina: It. It is. I agree. I love that you, that you made the. Hi. I love that and I love that you called your mom. Like I'm sure she loved that and yeah, like it. It is so great and it will, you're good. Recipes allow us to relive things. I remember during Covid, we were in Atlanta and we Mobile has mud. Gra. That's a big thing we always call.

We'd always. Go home for Mardi Gras and I just had my first daughter and I was devastated that we weren't getting to go home for Mardi Gras. It felt very unnatural. Uh, and my daughter had not met anyone, like she met the grandparents and that was it. . And so I do remember my husband made, my best friend sent up, sent up a king cake, and my husband made jumbalaya.

And my daughter was nine months at the time. And so she was getting to eat solids and uh, I remember feeding it to her and I remember crying. I remember I was so overwhelmed with emotion because although I wasn't where I felt like I should have been, although you know, [00:33:00] these. Life kind of happened and we weren't getting to do what I wanted to.

I was getting to share that with her. I was getting to keep that spirit of Mardi Gras alive in a different city. , it was, it was great. It was great to chat with family and then like next thing you know, we're on the phone with everyone. Now you have FaceTime, which is fabulous.

It was like, look, it's Ann Marie and she's eating her first bite of jambalaya, and of course you like end up FaceTiming every single person. This kid's like, this is not my first fight. Like you've done called 20 people,

Riley: Oh, that's too good. Yeah, man, I feel like I broken record. I say this a lot too, but it's. Food has this way of just taking you back to a place and it just brings up so much nostalgia and feelings. And I mean, when you were just talking right then, I just feel like you could just, it brings up so much emotion in me, um, to just think about, you know, I mean, just going back to the pound cake, like when I get to make that again or have that again, that takes me right back to my grandmother's kitchen and the house that I basically grew up in.[00:34:00] 

Christina: Right.

Riley: Even if it doesn't taste exactly the same, my mind goes right there because that's it. That's just, it feels like home, you know? Uh, and food has kind of this way of bringing us back to that, um, which is really unique.

Christina: it is. I think it's the smells like it's something to do with all those ingredients and it gets you and um, you know, the older you get, I think you get almost choked up when you have a meal that feels nostalgic. Like that first bite you get so overwhelmed with the emotion that you are not sad, but you definitely have like a.

It takes you back in a, in a way that you weren't expecting sometimes, and it just has a way of catching you at a different moment each time, and you're just brought back, which is great.

Riley: Yeah.

Roni: Right. Well, we don't wanna take up your whole day, Christina, but we appreciate you being here. Um, why don't you tell everybody where they can connect with, create my cook.

Christina: Absolutely. Um, you know, Accounts are free to create. Uh, you will create a create a cookbook at If you have any questions, um, you can reach out to [00:35:00] We'll be happy to answer them. 

Roni: Wonderful. We also like to end our episodes talking a little bit more about recipes, even though we talked a little bit about it, uh, already, but we like to talk about a recent recipe or recent meal that you've had that you really loved and you wanna talk about and share with our audience.

Christina: Oh, okay. Hmm. I talked about pecan pie, which is on my mind because I have all the ingredients on my counter in there. 

And we talked about all my favorite ones. I feel like I've talked about. Let me think about this. Okay. No, I have it. I have it . So, Man, they're all about baking right now. It's just that season. Um, definitely one of my favorite recipes right now is the, is a, a macadamian nut cookie that is just heavenly and also really fun to make with my daughter.

So it's not a recipe that was actually passed down to me, one that I've just like researched, but it's kind of become my own. Um, and what's really fun about it is, [00:36:00] It's kind of the first recipe that I'm making with my daughter that's ours. And she and I are making this recipe. We've made it like three times in the last month and it's just fun.

Cause I feel like it's our memory and it's something that she and I are connecting and I feel like I get to be the mom now and I get to be that the mom in the author line . So I'm really loving that recipes.

Roni: That's beautiful. I love that. That's, that makes me really happy that you guys are getting to share that memory.

Christina: thank you.

Riley: Well, thank you so much, Christina. We've loved having you on the show, and we cannot wait to share, create my cookbook with our audience and just share this fun, nostalgic chat about recipes with them.

Christina: Thank you so much.

Roni: We hope you enjoyed this episode. And if you did, please share it with someone and subscribe to our podcast. Wherever you listen to your podcasts.