Maybe it's just me but watching Paula cook with all of that oil and buuuutter makes my stomach do flip-flops. Down home cooking with her 'boys', a dog in the kitchen, and more grease than you'll find on Brad Pitt's forehead, Y'all.
Paula Deen, with her silver tidal wave of hair and multiple diamond rings that she forgets to remove before every cooking program, has a charm that, for many that is reminiscent of hanging out in grandma's kitchen.
From a book review of The Lady & Sons Savannah Country Cookbook:
I love her warm, upbeat manner and I'm impressed with her Cinderella story which has been recounted by countless other reviewers. Her charm is found all through this title and its sequel and reading the stories behind the recipes is just as enlightening as the recipes themselves. Paula writes the way she speaks, and you can even hear her easy Savannah drawl as you read. The recipes are down-to-earth, mostly pretty simple, and decadently satisfying. Those doing Atkins or Weight Watchers need not apply here...we're talkin' SERIOUS cheese, butter, and cream (yep, the real stuff!).
In his enthusiastic introduction, John Berendt, author of Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, writes: "Authentic Southern food is not about pretension." Sure enough, this book doesn't put on any airs. A great many recipes unabashedly list prepared foods among the ingredients. As an appetizer, Garlic Cheese Spread includes an eight-ounce package of cream cheese and an eight-ounce jar of Cheez-Whiz. Shrimp or Lobster Bisque contains, in addition to seafood, a can each of condensed tomato soup and condensed mushroom soup. The restaurant's most popular dessert is Gooey Butter Cakes, which starts with a box of Duncan Hines yellow cake mix. Still, some of the recipes attain a high level of regional authenticity: Georgia Cracker Salad is made with crushed saltines, tomato, scallions, hard-boiled egg and mayonnaise; Southern Fried Chicken acquires its crispy coating with a batter of eggs and self-rising flour. Readers concerned about high fat content should skip this book.
From the time she was a young girl, Paula has suffered from agoraphobia. That may explain why it's tough to find any interviews with her. I did find her restaurant website which features, what else? A write-up of her brother Bubba's new oyster house, y'all. "Bubba and I are so excited about it. He's even letting me serve some of my home cooking there." Gee, what a swell guy that Bubba.
And don't forget, "And did I mention I have a new cookbook come out soon?" We'll be sure to look fer it, darlin'.