My love for cooking came from my mother and grandmothers. My mom grew up helping her mom cook the food that came from their garden and fields. Even after my aunts and uncles were grown and on their own, my grandmother kept the garden going. A weekend visit with my grandmother meant we would be coming home with a basket of fresh vegetables from her garden and packages of fresh meat, and my mom would always make something wonderful with them. One of my earliest memories of my mother cooking was preparing and delivering supper to my dad who was working the night shift at the bus station (chicken fried steak with cream gravy, green beans and macaroni and cheese).
After my grandmother passed away, my parents carried on the tradition by starting their own garden. The summer garden has always one of my favorites because of all the fresh squash, tomatoes, cucumbers, green beans and peppers. My parents would can tomatoes and pickles and freeze peppers for later use. But with the abundance of yellow squash, my mother used to make Squash Casserole. She would make it in large batches and put it into smaller foil containers to freeze and save for a later date. It always came in handy if she had to bring a last minute side dish to a family reunion or party. The ingredients are so simple but the flavor combination screams pure comfort food to me. Now my mother used a lot more butter than my recipe calls for, but I found that it really isn’t necessary.