Harrison’s grandmother inspired her to cook

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, July 19, 2000

DONNA KEATING / L’Observateur / July 19, 2000

LAPLACE – Shanna Harrison has lived in LaPlace all of her life. She ismarried to Steve Harrison and is the mother of 6-year-old Garrett, with another child on the way.

Shanna and her husband enjoy having guests over for dinner and entertaining often. She usually does the cooking, except when it’s time tobarbecue. That’s when Steve takes over.Shanna was always curious about her grandmother Marie Lise Crabtree’s cooking because she was such a good cook. Grandmother Crabtree was alsoin charge of cooking for the many students of St. Joan of Arc School,where she worked as cafeteria manager.

She also learned to cook from watching her mother, Edie Crabtree, who liked to cook Cajun-style.

When Shanna married Steve, who is from Alabama, she would prepare Cajun dishes for their dinners. She says he was not used to eating spicyfood and had to adjust to her cooking. Now he loves eating Cajun cookingand often asks her to make crawfish delight or shrimp creole. He alsoenjoys other dishes she prepares, such as beef stew, pasta and Italian dishes. Her son Garrett likes to keep it simple. His favorites are spaghettior mashed potatoes and gravy.

Shanna admits she prefers baking rather than cooking and remembers making her first batch of cookies when she was about 11. “They turned outpretty good,” she added.

Now Shanna enjoys baking cookies for St. Joan of Arc School fund-raisers,First Baptist Church fund-raisers and Sunday school classes or any event that pops up.

She also enjoys baking cakes. She once made her husband an Almond Joycake for his birthday, which both say came out great. He says his absolutefavorite is her Patty cake, a very sweet and gooey cake.

“You use a whole box of powdered sugar in that cake mix,” Shanna says, adding, “Everybody really loves it.”When it comes to recipes, she does a lot of cooking from her cherished St.

Joan of Arc Ladies Altar Society cookbook, published in 1973.

“That is the cookbook I use the most,” she says.

However, she will update the recipe to allow for modern convenience products that are available today.

She also collects recipes through family and friends, and whenever she tries something she really enjoys she will ask for the recipe.

Shanna likes to try different things and sometimes invents her own recipes.

Shanna is a successful cook but can remember a couple of occasions when she was not so lucky. There was the time when she made crawfishspaghetti and for some reason,m she’s not sure what, it just didn’t taste right. She says her husband fixed a plate of spaghetti and sat down at thetable, tasted and tried to eat it, but couldn’t. She thinks the crawfishmust have gone bad.

Then there was the time she was making gumbo for a family dinner during the holidays, and she bought a whole smoked chicken. Running late fordinner and not knowing how to cut up a chicken, Shanna ran out of the house with the chicken to a nearby neighbor’s house. Luckily, her friendand neighbor Marilyn Simoneaux saved the day by cutting up the chicken for her.

When it comes to getting advice with her cooking, she can still rely on her grandmother. Though Shanna’s grandmother is in a nursing home anddoesn’t get around very well, she is still as sharp as ever.

For those looking for advice Shanna says it’s important to follow recipes carefully, learn from that, and then you can create your own recipes. Sheadds it’s very important to get a good cookbook.

Here are a few recipes Shanna would like to share:

CRAWFISH SPAGHETTI 1/2 cup cooking oil 1/2 cup flour 1 large onion, chopped 1 lb. crawfish tails1 15-oz. can tomato sauce1 15-oz. can crushed tomatoessalt and pepper, to taste parsley, to taste mushroom slices, optional

Make a roux with flour and oil. Add onions and cook until clear. Addcrawfish; saute’ about 10 minutes. Add tomato sauce and crushedtomatoes. Add seasonings, mushrooms and water if needed. Simmer for 30minutes. Serve over angel hair pasta.

CHOCOLATE FROSTY ICE CREAM 1 can sweetened condensed milk 1 8-oz. container Cool Whip1 7-oz. jar marshmallow creme1/2 gallon or 2 qts. Nestles Quick chocolate milk

Mix condensed milk, Cool Whip and marshmallow creme with mixer until well blended. Pour into ice cream freezer. Pour chocolate milk into freezerwith other ingredients and mix well with spoon. If needed, add enoughwhite whole milk to fill to freezer to fill line.

SWEET POTATO CRUNCH 3 cups sweet potatoes 1/2 cup sugar 1/2 cup butter 2 eggs 1 tsp. vanilla1/3 cup milk 1/4 tsp. nutmeg1/4 cup cinnamon

Mix all ingredients and put into a 13×9-inch pan.

Topping: 1/3 cup melted butter 1 cup light brown sugar 1/2 cup flour 1 cup pecans, chopped

Melt butter and mix all other ingredients in. Sprinkle over casserole andbake at 350 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes or until lightly browned.

Note: When making a double recipe there is no need to double the topping.

Back to Top

Back to Leisure Headlines

Copyright © #Thisyear# Wick Communications, Inc.Best viewed with 4.0 or higher