Skillet Stories: A Lifetime Legacy

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Photographs by Stephen DeVries

Panka’s dark brown eyes were bright as she told how she cooked and cooked on her toy stove. Her menu? She fried little green onions in bacon grease, seasoning them with salt, pepper, and sugar. This cooking had to be done outside, she explained, because “Daddy didn’t like onions.” (Maybe he didn’t like the idea of their house burning down when she lit a match to the broken twigs she stuffed into the stove.)

It’s not surprising that our beloved Panka grew up to be such an amazing country cook who heaped love on her family by bringing them together to help themselves to the best Southern food anybody anywhere has ever tasted.

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