Rosanell Phillips
Rosanell Phillips
Not only is Rosanell Phillips the Club Woman of the Year for the Philadelphia Woman's Club, she is also a talented cook!

Club members as well as family members agree that she is exceptional when it comes to preparing their favorite cakes, pickles and casseroles.

A longtime educator, Rosanell lives on Frog Level Road.

She and her husband, former Sheriff Johnny Phillips, now deceased, taught in a number of different school districts over the years.

Rosanell grew up in Monroe County. She and Johnny met while both were attending Mississippi State University.

They married in 1964 after she received her degree. Johnny was an industrial arts teacher before he was elected sheriff.

He served two terms.

Rosanell retired from teaching in 1994 though she often works as a substitute.

She is enjoying her retirement as she loves to read, travel, play cards and dance.

Rosanell especially enjoys going to the mountains and the beach. She and friends have been to Australia, New Zealand and Fiji.

"That was a 17-day trip and it went from one extreme weather to the other," she said of their travels.

She has also been to the Holy Land, Egypt, Hawaii and even to Alaska!

"I've been blessed to be able to travel," she said.

Rosanell is a member of New Pleasantdale Baptist Church, the Philadelphia Woman's Club, Kappa Kappa Iota and the National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association.

She also likes to garden.

"We used to have a huge garden," she said, "but now I have a tiny little garden. I use newspapers to keep the grass out."

Her pantry is filled with numerous jars of pear and fig preserves and squash pickles.

Rosanell loves to cook for her family on holidays. Fried ham, dressing and green beans are among her specialities.

"I just cook what they like," she said.

Her family includes daughter, Kaye and her husband, Bryant Lang, and their two children, Bethany Kate and Aden.

Rosanell has shared several of her favorite recipes including one for tomato gravy, which is a family favorite.

Her squash pickles are also pretty popular.


1 10-count can of biscuits

1 cup mayonnaise

1 1/2 cups Monterey Jack cheese, shredded



Sliced tomatoes

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Press biscuits into bottom of pan. Slice tomatoes and put on top of biscuits. Sprinkle basil and oregano over tomatoes. Mix mayonnaise and cheese together. Spread over tomatoes. Bake 12 minutes and serve.


1 cup pecans, chopped fine

1 can coconut, grated

1 box German chocolate cake mix

1 stick butter

8-ounce package cream cheese

1 box powdered sugar

Spray a 9x13 inch pan with nonstick cooking spray and place pecans and coconut in the bottom. Mix the cake according to directions on the box and pour over pecans and coconut. Melt butter, cream cheese and powdered sugar together in the microwave. Pour this mixture over the cake. Bake one hour at 350 degrees.


8 cups yellow summer squash, sliced

2 cups sliced sweet onion

1 tablespoon non-iodized salt

1 cup diced green bell pepper

1/2 cup diced red bell pepper

2 cups cider vinegar

3 1/2 cups sugar

1 teaspoon celery seed

1 teaspoon mustard seed

Combine squash and onion slices in a large enamel kettle. Sprinkle with salt. Let stand one hour. Add green and red peppers, vinegar, sugar, celery seeds and mustard seeds and bring to a boil. Pack in jars. Bring water to a boil in a boiling water-bath canner. Place hot filled jars in rack and into the water. Starting timer when water returns to a boil with jars in it, process for five minutes or for 10 minutes for altitudes of 1,000 to 6,000 feet. Over 6,000 feet process 15 minutes.


2 15-ounce cans Veg-All, drained

1/2 cup chopped onion

1 cup sliced water chestnuts, drained

1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded

3/4 cup Blue Plate mayonnaise

1 tube Ritz crackers, crushed

1 stick margarine, melted

Mix Veg-All, chopped onion, water chestnuts, cheddar cheese and mayonnaise. Pour into a casserole dish. Top with crackers mixed with margarine. Bake at 350 degrees until bubbly.

Tomato Gravy
4 tablespoons bacon drippings

2 to 3 heaping tablespoons flour

Salt and pepper to taste

1 cup peeled, chopped tomatoes

2 to 3 cups cold water

Heat bacon drippings in heavy skillet. Add flour, salt and pepper. Stir in to mix and continue

stirring until evenly browned (medium to dark brown), being careful not to burn. Add tomatoes. Stir quickly and very carefully add water, stirring carefully. Reduce heat to prevent boil-over. Stir occasionally while cooking about 30 minutes or until the mixture cooks to a desired consistency.