Bay Minette resident preserves dying art of Southern cooking

“Nibbles and Scribbles” shares art of cooking and neighborhood tales


Judy Dees Watson believes the Southern way of cooking is a dying art.

So, the lifelong Bay Minette resident wrote a cookbook to help preserve it.

“So, so many times when family members pass away, when the dust settles the family says, ‘I wish I had so and so’s recipe for such and such’. They take the recipe to the grave.”

Watson culled her recipes from family, friends and original dishes she perfected in her own kitchen. She began writing the book years ago as a way to pass down the recipes.

“For example my great grandmother’s fruit cake recipe is old timey and is one of the best I’ve ever seen,” she said. “People don’t normally eat fruit cake but they eat this.”

She hopes that having access to the tried and true recipes will inspire more people to leave fast food behind and encourage them to cook. For those who say they can’t, Watson said there are only two things they need: to take their time and use the right seasoning.

“If you do those two things you are going to be surprised at what you can do in that kitchen, and it’s a whole lot better for you,” she said.

Every recipe also includes a short story about the original cook and fun tales about the dish. Watson said she is the last original resident left in the Bay Minette neighborhood she grew up in, built in 1947.

“If you want the traditions and recipes, I’ve got them,” she said. 

You can purchase a copy of “Nibbles and Scribbles: A Southern Cookbook” by Judy Dees Watson at LA Looks Hair Salon and Bell’s Pharmacy in Bay Minette, or by calling Watson at 251-680-2521.