When you work for nearly 27 years as a county home economist with the Alabama Cooperative Extension System, you’re bound to amass a collection of simply delicious down-home recipes. Jeannie Hollinger of Wilcox County certainly did, and she shares a sampling of them with readers in this month’s “Country Kitchen.”
“I didn’t want to give you a bunch of recipes out of cookbooks,” Jeannie says. “These all are ones I’ve gotten from other people through the years – friends’ and family members’ favorites. These are the tried-and-true kind of recipes.”
There was a time when Jeannie cooked regularly on the Camden cattle farm where she and Leo, her husband of 25 years, raised their two children. But now that both of the kids, Bryant and Rebecca, are in school at Auburn University, she doesn’t crank up the oven as often as she used to. For one thing, it’s just her and Leo. For another, she’s too busy.
“When you ‘retire,’ people tend to think that now you’ve got all kinds of time, and everybody starts giving you 10 volunteer jobs to do,” she says. “If you don’t watch it, you’ll just about have too much going on.”
With Jeannie, to say she’s “retired” from Extension isn’t exactly accurate. Although she did retire from her full-time job as county Extension coordinator for Wilcox and Clarke counties in December 2003, she’s continued to work for Extension part time on contract, overseeing a parenting program in Wilcox and Choctaw counties.
And in her remaining waking hours of “retirement,” she’s taking a more active role in Leo’s cattle operation, primarily in terms of handling all the bookkeeping. She’s also serving as chairman of the Wilcox County Farmers Federation’s Women’s Committee, president of the Wilcox Historical Society, secretary of the Exchange Club, and she’s a Sunday school teacher at her church.
Whew. It’s a good thing all of her tried-and-true recipes are also the quick-and-easy kind. Make the time to try these fantastic offerings from Jeannie. It’ll definitely be time well spent.