About Us

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About Mary Cat's Cuisine...

I have loved to cook and entertain for as long as I can remember.  My earliest fond entertaining memories come from helping Mom and Dad as they hosted cocktail parties for each faculty department at Crown Point High School during the early 1970’s.   I was Mom’s “right hand gal”; and I remember loving the excitement surrounding every aspect of the parties.   

My first real cooking practice came while Al and I were stationed at Charleston (SC) Naval Base, from 1984-1990 after we were married.  Al’s submarine was in “dry dock” for 18 months of that time, and I took daily meals to him and his crew, while experimenting as a novice in the kitchen.  When Al’s submarine did go out, whether for two days, one week, or even seven months, I always hosted a “back from sea” happy hour, so couples could enjoy a little down time and some tasty treats before getting back to the real experience of “family life” again.

I grew to love cooking and all of you who know me also know that SOUPS ARE MY FAVORITE!  My Grandpa Georgas was a retired chef while I was growing up in Crown Point, IN.  He and Grandma lived in Hammond, IN, and every time Mom and Dad drove us up to their home, we were welcomed with the delightful aroma of simmering magic.  I loved those days with Grandpa and Grandma Georgas, and the meals of soup and salads with Pompeian Olive Oil were magnificent.  I cherish those memories of comfort and love.  And I want every guest that enters my home to receive that same warm welcomeJ

I first considered composing a cookbook when our friend, Jayson Capling asked me back in 2003, “Mary, everything you make is so good; have you considered doing a cookbook?”  I said “yes”, and I began typing recipes as I cooked for a few years; the process was in the works.   Thank you, JaysonJ

However it wasn’t until I received a new digital camera and laptop computer for Christmas 2008 that the “official” process was set in motion.  I had the bright idea of remaking everything I had ever made in my life, but this time, I would shoot a photo of my creation to add to the recipe.  This all sounds good and well, but after a long day of cooking a variety of dishes, sometimes it’s difficult, even impossible to shoot a “pretty” staged picture….especially when you (and your family) are tired and hungryJ  But the process continued. 

During summer 2010 I realized I had nearly 400 recipes, and decided it was time to get serious.  I came up with the title, “Mary Cat’s Cuisine: With Family and Friends for All Seasons”, and divided the recipes among the four seasons of the year.   In August I began to prepare for publication, and before I knew it, I was overwhelmed and I felt as if I was working on my Ph.D. dissertation once again.  So I opted for sanity and decided to divide the first edition cookbook into 4 volumes, with Volume I being WINTER. The publishing/printing process has been interesting to say the least.  The steep learning curve and rollercoaster ride of events has been enlightening indeed.  However we finally received an afternoon of invaluable assistance from Craig Steiner at Holmes Printing in mid-November and here we are.  Despite our printing difficulties, Al and I decided to donate a portion of proceeds from the WINTER volume to “I BELIEVE FOUNDATION” in honor of my colleague Nicole Griffith-Green’s son, Griffen, who lives with autism.  This amazing organization was cofounded by my former student and Occupational Therapist, Mandy Kidwell, and I could not be prouder of her and all she does to better the lives’ of Griffen and special folks like him.  May God bless you, Mandy, Griffen, Nicole, and all who live with autism every day.  My heart and prayers go out to each of you.  May you be comforted by some of my healing food in this cookbookJ 

I have many people to thank for the success of this project.  My wonderful husband Al, and son Allen served as daily supporters and expert taste testers throughout the process and were extremely patient as I shot my photos as they stood starving with knife and fork, in hand.  And cooking in the kitchen with Allen was the highlight of these cooking days for me.  Our friend Jason Dobson, helped me devise some recipes and submitted a few as well.  Thank you to all my contributors, some of whom are listed on page 6; many more will appear in subsequent volumes/seasons. Thanks for making “With Family and Friends” a reality. 

In closing, I hope each and every person who opens this book, finds some of the same joy I feel while I’m in my kitchen.  Lots of love and luck will be coming your way.   Live, Laugh, Love, and COOK!  Cheers, Chef Mary Cat