Mother’s Day Giveaway 2013


Lauren practicing her decorating skills with Grandma.

This contest is closed.  Congratulations to our winner, Donna Donahue! 

Whether your mom was good at it or bad at it, chances are she taught you something about cooking. In my case, it was a lot of things – well actually, probably nearly everything. What a gift. Thank you, Mom!

You can check out my Mom’s Never Fail Pie Crust and see her making the recipe here.

How about you? What did your mom pass along? A family recipe? A tip or trick? The number for the pizza place that delivers? Whatever it is, we really do want to hear about it.  And we want you to enter our Mother’s Day Giveaway!

ENTER by responding to this post and telling us about something your mom taught you in the kitchen.

We’ll pick a winner randomly from all entries and announce it on Mother’s Day.

Bobby Dean

A copy of From Mama’s Table to Mine: Everybody’s Favorite Comfort Foods at 350 Calories or Less, by Bobby Dean.

Bobby has transformed some of his mom’s favorite recipes –  like crab cakes, buffalo chicken salad, queso fundido, hush puppies, and corn chowder -into healthier versions of  themselves, all under 350 calories per serving.

Tune in on Mother’s Day to see who wins!


  1. Nina says:

    Oh wowee….my mother Julie taught me to stay fresh, in every respect! In Berkeley in the 50’s we always patronized the Japanese-run produce department at our local market and I learned to explore and try new products, to choose those in the best condition and to optimize their use….we ate fruits, veggies and salads every day. And she taught me to buy the best fish and meats I could find, mindful of certain economies, so that I would become a good user of foods. She used no packaged foods – I yearned for Jello!- and most of all she taught me to stay curious and be adventuresome with food, to take risks, to grow. At nearly seventy myself now I’m still learning to cook new things, new ways, still buying as local as possible, and yes, staying fresh! Ahh, Julie, I miss you most of all in the morning, with the coffee…..

  2. Carolsue says:

    My Mom taught me how to bake bread and muffins and so on from scratch! No mixes for her!

  3. Patti Bryant says:

    My Mom taught me how to cook wild meat as my father was a great hunter.He was always bringing home something for my Mom to cook up for dinner.I watch her very closely as she would use and onion and apples and even lipton onion soup for seasoning.We had lots of deer meat ,wild duck and salmon.When I got married my husband was not a hunter,but that was ok because I learn to cook a new way.My Mom was a great cook and my dad was a good hunter and I miss them both.Thanks for all you taught me,I am grateful.

  4. Liz Blunt says:

    My Mother taught me how to make an awesome shrimp scampi that’s fast & delicious!

  5. D Richter says:

    Sorry I got so wrapped up in talking about this amazing cookbook and how I really want to own it in my last post, I forgot to write about what my mom taught me to cook! well she really didn’t teach me I taught myself! But I do make homemade Spaghetti sauce like my mom always did when I was kid! She always she homemade was better! Also she said a spoon of sugar to the sauce takes away the tangy acidy taste that some people don’t like from all the tomatoes. And my mom was sure right! My daughter loves my Spaghetti and so does her friends! My daughter has a friend that lives in Ohio and every time she comes to visit and I ask what should I make for dinner she yells spaghetti and don’t for get the garlic bread!

  6. D Richter says:

    I really like From Mama’s Table to Mine: Everybody’s Favorite Comfort Foods at 350 Calories or Less, by Bobby Dean. I checked it out at my local library, The recipes are great! I would recommend This cookbook to everyone most of the recipes are basic items that you can find at any grocery store. I love cooking and baking I cook at least three meals a day for my family. I also love to bake and try new things! I just wish that i could own this cook book and many more I didn’t want to return it to my local library, and when I tried to renew it I could because it was reserved for other people so Im back on the waiting list it looks like a month or before I will get a turn to make some more fantastic recipes! I would of copied some recipes but I don’t have a printer! And at the library they charge 20 cents a page for copying. I love so many recipes, there is no way I could afford that! Just like, I can’t afford to buy the this great cookbook! I wish I could!!

  7. Robbin says:

    My mom… greatest lady around! Not only did she teach me to cook but also the importance of the family sitting down at the dinner table and eating together. I raised my family the same way. Everyone ate at the table in the evening and talked about their day.

  8. Jim says:

    My Mom was a great cook, though I was a fairly picky eater growing up and didn’t always appreciate her offerings (like liver and onions, sweet breads, asparagis, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, and other vegetables). My parents both grew up during the depression (my Father on a farm outside Spokane, where they grew, or raised, in the case of beef, lamb, pork, and chicken, all their food for the year. At harvest time, the women and girls in the family were kept busy processing and canning food stuffs for the rest of the year, while the men and boys were out working in the fields and gardens. Depression times made the task very urgent. My Father’s experiences, like many parents of that age, inspired many stories when I was growing up in the fifties, beginning with: “When I was your age . . . .” We were also admonished to “clean up your plate, or you’ll get it for breakfast.” Some meals lasted a long time!)

    I do like to eat and am grateful that I married an outstanding cook almost fifty years ago!

  9. Theresa N says:

    My mother taught me chocolate goes with everything.

  10. Helen says:

    My mom taught me a lot of great things about cooking but the most important lessons were on how to season food. She couldn’t afford fancy ingredients but she always had herbs and spices and bottles of flavoring on hand. If she’d written a cookbook, I think the title would have been “Don’t Forget the Salt and Pepper”.

  11. jacquie says:

    that food should be used as a source of comfort – bad lesson and one i’m struggling with. and that cooking dinner everyone night was a chore and an obligation that had to be fulfilled. still dealing with the fall out from that also….

  12. Kristen says:

    My mom not only passed on the best Lebanese pastry recipes from both sides of the family, but also a sense of fearlessness when it comes to trying out new recipes. She taught me that by having a good understanding of flavors and textures, new recipes don’t have to be intimidating!

  13. Donna Donahue says:

    My mom taught me to always keep extra supplies in the pantry or freezer, so that you can always stretch a meal for unexpected guest. With four kids “There’s always room for one more” attitude. By the way she also worked full time and went to school. So everything came out of the freezer and into the oven. Her father used to say she was the only one who make a dinner that burnt your lips and froze your tongue. But she taught us that a women could do it all.

  14. Cynthia says:

    My mother taught me how to be a working mom operating on a very tight budget and still feed a family tasty healthy food each night. In the 60s prepackaged food started becoming all the rage (TV dinners anyone?), but she continued making simple tasty meals night after night pretty much from scratch. Her trick was to start with Sunday dinner as the base for the week. Ham dinner on Sunday? We knew it would be followed by her delicious split pea and ham soup one night that week. Her festive Chinese ham fried rice dinner could be counted on a second night long before home cooked Asian food was common here. Eating from real china, acquired by my newlywed parents in pre-revolutionary China in 1948, we learned to eat with chopsticks as tiny children, again long before it was common in the US. Beautiful real Chinese china and chopsticks made the weeknight meal something to remember. That china now sits in my home, and I try to make my 90 year old mother proud by using it as often as possible. With my mother’s clever cooking skills and the nicely set table each night, we never knew that money was so tight and learned that simple food enjoyed around a family table was as good as it gets. Thanks mom.

  15. Donna Keating says:

    Yhe yummiest thing my mom taught me how to make is Lemon Ice Box Pie, made with Eagle Brand milk. It’s still my favorite today!

  16. Michelle says:

    My momma taught me a TON! From arranging flowers, to designing and setting a formal table, gourmet cooking and above all, assuring of successful entertaining all around. Both my folks are master entertainers and I recall the prep work that went into so many dinner parties, and the wow that was rendered by their guests. I have that “gene” now and LOVE the art of entertaining, and the wow’s that come from the events that I host. Thanks Mom (and Dad) 🙂

  17. Marie says:

    My mom taught me that what we have is enough. I still worry about running out of something or not preparing enough for the family get together. Mom always would say that is too much or what we have is enough and as always, she was right.

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