Terrie Ann Jones cooks "Scallop, orange and asparagus stir-fry"
Home-cooked food earns cook the nickname "the shepherd"
Wouldn't you know it?
When I contacted TerrieAnn Jones about being a Cook of the Year, she was preparing a meal for a needy neighbor.
TerrieAnn's friends call her "the shepherd" because she tends to her flock - friends, neighbors and family - with home-cooked food. She organizes volunteers to provide meals for those who need them, and cooks for her family of four.
"The way to anyone's heart is with a kind gesture to help meet a basic need," the Palatine woman says. "This is truly how I show people I care for them."
Best meal I cooked in 2008: Lentil soup. I lived with a single woman in Spain while I was a student at the University of Madrid. She used to make the best lentil soup. I included some of her ingredients in mine, and it brought me back to sitting in our apartment, eating and laughing together.
Culinary goal for 2009: Try one new recipe a week.
Best ingredient discovery 2008: Fat-free peanut butter powder called PB2, from bellplantation.com. It is a great additive for hot oatmeal, fruit smoothies and toast. I plan to experiment with it more.
Favorite kitchen tool: My crockpot and my Weight Watchers serving spoons in half-cup and one-cup sizes. They really help keep portion size in check.
About this recipe: Scallop, Orange and Asparagus Stir-Fry. The asparagus really absorbs the flavor and tastes absolutely amazing. My kids like the way our house smells when I make it.