Melinda Breazeale
Melinda Breazeale
When it comes to Sunday afternoons after church services, Melinda and John Breazeale can usually be found in the kitchen preparing some type of Cajun dish, from gumbo to red beans and rice.

The couple makes their home on Wilson Street and are members of Linwood Baptist Church.

Melinda is a native of the House community and a graduate of Neshoba Central High School.

Born in Tupelo, John’s family moved to Philadelphia when he was around 6 years old. He graduated from Philadelphia High School and then joined the family business, Philadelphia Amusement Co.

He is now employed as a directional driller with Miller Pipeline in Louisiana.

Melinda is a free-lance photographer.

The couple has two children. Daughter, Samantha, 24, is married to Hunter Robinson. She is in nursing school.

Son Colby, 22, works at Johnson Kia in Meridian.

His girlfriend, Tori Chestnut, is also part of their family, Melinda said.

She is employed at First Baptist Church.

The Breazeale family also includes Sadie, 13, a Boston terrier mix, and Diesel, a six-month-old German shepherd.

Melinda is the daughter of Mable and Dwight Galloway.

Her father, an avid gardener, died in June, sparking Melinda and John to save seeds from his garden to plant in the spring.

“Planting his garden was my daddy’s hobby,” Melinda said, noting the numerous tomatoes and peppers that he raised.

The Breazeales are huge Ole Miss fans. However, John favors the NFL and especially the New Orleans Saints while Melinda likes college football best.

They are both pretty much home bodies and enjoy spending time together watching games on TV. They do, however, try to catch a Rebels game or two on the Ole Miss campus when time permits.

They also like to go to Pigeon Forge, Tenn., to spend time at Melinda’s mother cabin in the mountains.

Melinda’s love of cooking stemmed from her grandmother, Ruby Taylor who lives in Union. She and Melinda baked tea cakes when she was a little girl.

Her grandmother changed the recipe’s name in her cookbook to Melinda’s Tea Cakes.

While Melinda and Samantha will eat most foods, the boys in the family are somewhat picky.

“I like country cooking,” Melinda said. “Samantha and I like casseroles but not John. He likes Cajun foods.”

Since he is forced to dine out for most meals when he is away at work, Melinda likes to prepare his favorite foods when he is home. He often packs leftovers to take back with him to Louisiana.

One of his favorite dishes which Melinda prepares is Sticky Chicken.

She basically browns chicken in her cast iron skillet. She then tops with a lid and reduces the heat and lets it steam for an hour or so.

When their schedules permit, the Breazeales like “date nights” on the weekends, dining at one of their favorite restaurants. Seafood has to be on the menu, however!

Gumbo and seafood and grits are among John’s specialities. They team up in the kitchen most Sunday afternoons to prepare some sort of Cajun food from his many recipes.

They have shared the shrimp and grits recipe along with several others.

Mexican Cornbread

2 cups cornmeal

1 cup of milk

1/4 cup corn oil

3 large eggs

1 large onion diced

2 jalapeño peppers minced

1 cup shredded cheddar cheese

In a large bowl mix all the ingredients. Pour into a well oiled iron skillet. Bake on 375 for 45 minutes.

Shrimp and Grits

1 cup coarse grits

3 cups water

2 teaspoons salt

2 cups heavy whipping cream

2 pounds uncooked shrimp peeled and deveined

1 pinch cayenne pepper

1 lemon juiced

1 pound andouille sausage cut into 1/4 inch slices

5 slices bacon

2 teaspoons minced garlic

1/4 cup butter

1/4 cup all purpose flour

1 cup chicken broth

1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

Bring water, grits and salt to a boil in a covered saucepan. Stir in heavy whipping cream and simmer until grits are thickened, about 15 to 20 minutes. Set aside and keep warm.

Sprinkle shrimp with cayenne pepper; drizzle with lemon juice. Set aside

Place andouille sausage slices in a large skillet cooking over medium heat; fry sausage until browned, about 8 minutes. Set aside.

Cook bacon in a large skillet, over medium heat, turning occasionally until evenly browned, about 10 minutes. Keep bacon drippings in the skillet and place the bacon on a paper towel, let cool and crumble.

Cook the garlic in the bacon drippings for about 8 minutes.

Stir shrimp and garlic into the andouille sausage. Mix together.

Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat; stir in flour to make a paste. Turn heat to low and stir constantly until paste is brown; about 8 minutes.

Pour the butter-flour mixture into the shrimp-andouille sausage mixture. Place over medium heat and stir in the chicken broth, bacon and Worcestershire sauce, cooking and stirring until sauce thickens and shrimp become opaque and pink. About 10 minutes.

Serve shrimp mixture over grits.

Bigun's Sausage/Cheese Pie

(This was a recipe of my Dad's)

1 pound sausage

1 pound shredded sharp cheddar cheese

1/2 dozen eggs

1 frozen pie shell

Brown sausage in a skillet over medium heat. Drain. Put 1/2 of the sausage into the pie crust. Sprinkle 1/2 of the cheese on top of sausage. Place the remaining sausage into the pie crust and top with remaining cheese. Break 6 eggs into a bowl and beat slightly. Pour eggs over sausage and cheese. Bake on 350 degrees for about 30 minutes.

Lemon Bars

1 cup butter softened

2 cups all purpose flour

2 cups granulated sugar

4 eggs

1/2 lemon juice

2 tablespoons powder sugar

Heat oven to 350  Mix butter, flour and 1/2 cup of the granulated sugar together. Press into the bottom of a 9x13 baking dish.

Bake 15 to 20 minutes.

In a mixing bowl mix the remaining granulated sugar, eggs and lemon juice. Whisk until mixed well. Pour mixture over the baked crust. Place in the oven and bake 20 minutes or until the center is set. Let cool for 1 hour and sprinkle with powder sugar. Cut into bars.

 Crockpot Macaroni and Cheese

3 cups uncooked elbow macaroni

2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

1 cup shredded Colby cheese

2 1/2 cups half and half

4 tablespoons butter

15-ounce can cheddar cheese condensed soup

Combine the cheddar cheese soup and the half and half. Mix until smooth.

Pour the elbow macaroni, cheddar soup mixture, the butter, and half of the cheddar and Colby cheese in the crockpot. Mix well. Top with the remaining cheese. Turn the cooker on low with the lid on. Cook for 3 hours.

Red Beans and Rice

1 pound red beans

1/4 cup olive oil

1 large onion, diced

3 tablespoons minced garlic

6 cups of water

2 bay leaves

1 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1 teaspoon dried thyme

1 tablespoon dried parsley

1 teaspoon Cajun seasoning

1 pound andouille sausage sliced in 1/4 inch slices

4 cups of water

2 cups white rice

Rinse beans and soak in a large pot of water overnight

In a skillet heat oil and cook garlic and onion for 5 minutes over medium heat.

Rinse beans and put into a Dutch oven with 6 cups water. Add onion and garlic. Stir in cayenne pepper, thyme, parsley, Cajun seasoning, and bay leaves. Bring to a boil then reduce heat. Simmer over low heat for 2 hours.

Add sausage and cook 30 minutes.

Bring water to boil. Add rice then reduce heat and simmer 20 minutes.

Serve beans over rice.

Pound Cake with Lemon Glaze

1 1/2 cups butter

6 eggs

3 cups all purpose flour

2 1/2 cups granulated sugar

3 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla flavoring

3/4 cup milk

Grease and flour a tube or bundt pan. Do not preheat oven.

In mixing bowl mix flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.

In a large bowl cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, mixing each well. Add vanilla.

Add flour mixture and milk alternately. Mix until smooth. Pour batter into pan. Place in cold oven. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour.

Lemon Glaze

2 cups confectioners sugar

1/4 lemon juice

2 tablespoons butter

Beat all 3 ingredients together until smooth. Pour over the cake once it has cooled.

Shrimp Alfredo

16-ounce box fettuccine pasta

1 stick butter

1 pound uncooked shrimp peeled and deveined

4 cloves garlic

2 tablespoons fresh parsley

1 1/2 cups Parmesan cheese

2 cups heavy whipping cream

Melt butter in large skillet. Add garlic and cook 3-4 minutes. Add parsley, heavy whipping cream, and Parmesan cheese. Cook on low for 20 minutes stirring occasionally. Add shrimp and cook 10 minutes or until shrimp is opaque.

Cook fettuccine pasta according to directions on the box. Serve with the shrimp Alfredo sauce on top.