Jo Ann Grantland of Morgan County says she never thought of herself as a great cook, but those closest to her might disagree.
“My mother was a fabulous cook, and my sister is a fabulous cook,” she says. “So I never thought I was. My husband tells me I am though, and I have always liked to feed my family.”
Jo Ann and husband Ted live in Priceville where they farm wheat, corn and soybeans with their son, David. Ted is president of the Morgan County Farmers Federation, and Jo Ann says the organization has been an important part of their lives as farmers.
“We’ve been involved in the Federation for about 20 years. Like all farmers, we needed a good farm owner’s insurance policy, and Alfa was about the only company we could get to write us one. There’s a great need among farmers for those policies, and they can be hard to get,” says Jo Ann.
She also admits their son has been a driving force in their farming operation.
“Living so close to Huntsville and Decatur where land sometimes seems scarce, we don’t have what I would call a huge farm. Having David as a partner makes us feel like we have to hold up our end of the deal though, and seeing what our work on the farm means to each other keeps us going,” she says.
She always considered the housework her domain, and that includes her cooking.
“When my boys lived at home, they would get up in the morning and go to work with their daddy,” she says. “So, I made the beds and cleaned up and cooked while they were gone. It’s hard for me to let somebody do things in my house, but Ted says I just think they can’t do it good enough to please me.”
Jo Ann is also a letter carrier for the postal service, and says she takes pleasure in her work.
“I love carrying the mail. As a body gets older though, it starts to wear out, and I know I’ll eventually have to quit, but I can’t stand the thought of it,” says Jo Ann.
Most meals Jo Ann cooks nowadays are just for Ted and herself, but several of the following recipes are favorites at Grantland family feasts.
“I make the Sugar-Free Fruit Salad a good bit, and even the grandkids like it. My husband likes my banana pudding, and my granddaughters love my chicken and dressing,” Jo Ann says.
But even as she says this, her modesty about her kitchen skills isn’t far behind.
“I’m just an old country girl though, good for cutting grass and cleaning house and that’s about it,” said Jo Ann.
Sounds like her family might disagree.