Seale enjoys holding mini-potlucks
On top of winning the title of Miss Neshoba County Fair in 2021, Abby Seale said she loves cooking, especially for her circle of friends at Mississippi State University.
Seale, a senior at MSU majoring in kinesiology, was raised in Neshoba County, became very familiar with the Fairgrounds, and attended many potluck dinners and family get-togethers.
“Hospitality got me into cooking,” Seale said. “Going to all these family and community events inspired me to cook and get better at it, especially when I went to college so I wouldn’t be stuck eating ramen noodles every night.”
Seale said she first entered the world of cooking when she was around 10 years old when her grandmother began teaching her the ropes.
“Learning from my grandmother is when I really started paying attention to how she cooked, and my dad also inspired me with his country-style dinners,” Seale said. “My grandmother taught me to cook with veggies such as corn and okra, my mom taught me how to cook spaghetti and other Italian dishes, and I learned to cook deer steak, deer jerky, sausage, and more with my dad.”
Seale said thanks to the skills she learned from her family members, she and her roommate can make healthy and tasty meals most days and she is a vital part of dinner nights with her friend group she met through her sorority.
Outside of cooking, Seale has taken part in her fair share of pageants. She was the Distinguished Young Woman of Neshoba County in 2019 and recently became Miss Neshoba County Fair in 2021.
“Distinguished Young Woman got me interested in pageants and prepared me a lot for interviews, being well-versed in politics, and what’s happening in the world,” Seale said. “The Neshoba County Fair was a little different, being about someone representing the Fair and being hospitable, and I love that.”
“My sister, Miriam Seale, was Distinguished Young Woman and Miss Neshoba County Fair in 2016, and my mother competed in it as well,” Seale said. “I didn’t want to do it originally, but I knew I wouldn’t have the chance to do it again, and the one time I did it, I won. My favorite part was the interview portion where I was face to face with the judges and tell them about yourself and the Fair.”
FAT MAN’S DELIGHT
1 1/2 cups of plain flour
1 1/2 sticks of margarine or butter
1 cup of chopped nuts (pecans or walnuts).
Mix and press into a 2x9x12 inch pan or baking dish. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes, and cool when done.
8 ounces of cream cheese
1 cup powdered sugar
1 package of vanilla instant pudding
1 cup sweet milk
Mix and pour over the first layer.
One small can of English peas (drained)
One can of TexMex corn
One can of whole kernel corn (drained)
One can of black beans or black-eyed peas (rinsed and drained)
One small onion (chopped)
One green bell pepper (chopped)
One rib of celery (chopped)
One can of original Rotel
One cup of zesty Italian light dressing
Combine all ingredients and 2 teaspoons of Tony’s Creole Seasoning on top. Stir and refrigerate until ready to serve with tortilla chips.
1 ½ pounds fresh broccoli, cut into spears
1 ½ cups shredded cheddar cheese
¾ cup of milk
2/3 cup of sour cream
1 (10.5 ounces) can of condensed cream soup (can be mushroom, celery, chicken, etc.)
½ teaspoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon onion powder
½ teaspoon dry mustard
½ teaspoon curry powder (optional)
¼ teaspoon seasoned salt
Pepper to taste
3 cups shredded cooked chicken
1 cup of breadcrumbs
2 tablespoons of salted butter (melted)
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and add the broccoli. Cook for around 8 minutes until crisp and tender.
In a medium bowl, combine one cup of the cheddar cheese, milk, sour cream, soup, garlic powder, onion powder, dry mustard, curry powder (if using), seasoned salt, and pepper to taste.
Stir in the broccoli and chicken. Spread in a 9x13 inch baking dish and top with the remaining half cup of cheese.
In a small bowl, mix the breadcrumbs and butter. Sprinkle the topping over the chicken mixture. Bake for around 20 minutes until lightly browned and bubbly.