Wesley enjoys baking and a good book

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Alicia Wesley has three brothers and two sisters and grew up in the Walnut Grove area and moved to the Pearl River Community where she has been since.

Wesley works at the Tribal rental department on the Reservation as tenant counsel. She is also a busy mom with five kids and a grandmother. Her other two children are in college and her youngest, who is 15, is a sophomore this year at Choctaw Central.

When Wesley is not being a busy mom she enjoys reading books and cultural beading.

“I like reading books on business, leadership, self-help, and history,” said Wesley. She also likes to read the Bible.

Another one of Wesley’s hobbies is baking. Wesley learned how to cook by watching her grandmother and mother cook.

“She was the one who taught us by watching and not following any measurements or anything,” said Alicia.

Her grandmother never sat her down, but instead, she watched and learned different cooking techniques from her grandmother.

With feeding five children including three boys, Wesley mentioned that they eat a lot, especially during their teenage years. But even though Alicia enjoys cooking baking is her passion.

“It all started with my aunt, one of my uncle’s wife she introduced me to it, I’ve been on and off with baking,” said Wesley. “When I was 17, I took a baking class at East Central Community College.”

Wesley learned the basics of baking from the class she took. Then she wanted to learn more about backing and started watching YouTube videos to learn more about design cakes and picked up on more things.

“I am still wanting to take classes, but I haven’t,” she said. “I don’t do fondant, but it is something like I would like to do, one day.”

Her favorite part of cooking, in general, would be her cakes. People give her their ideas on what they want the cake to look like, and she runs with their ideas to create a perfect cake for her clients.

Some of the clients challenge her with certain cake designs, but this is what she loves so much about baking.

Wesley recently did a cake inspired by a tribal basket that turned out to be absolutely perfect.

“They are challenging at times, but I love challenges,” she said.

Her cakes are a small business she does on the side. She caters cakes for birthday parties, anniversaries, weddings and much more. Wesley is hoping to one day open up a baking shop.

TUNA CASSEROLE

1 can cream of mushroom soup

1/4 cup finely chopped onion

1/3 cup water

1/4 tsp. Salt

1 1/3 cup instant rice

Dash of pepper

1 (7 oz.) can drained English peas

1 large can drained

and flaked tuna

1/2 cup grated cheddar cheese

Paprika

Combine soup, onion, water, lemon juice, salt, pepper in sauce pan. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Pour half of mixture into greased 1 1/2 quart casserole dish. In layers, add rice, peas and tuna. Add remaining soup mix and sprinkle with cheese and paprika. Cover and for 15-20 minutes.

PORKCHOP SPANISH RICE

5 pork chops, 1/2 inch thick

1 tsp salt

1 tsp black pepper

3/4 cup long-grain rice

1/2 cup chopped onion

1 tbsp mustard

1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce

Boil pork chops, onions, salt, pepper until almost done. Add rice, mustard and Worcestershire sauce. Stir occasionally, cook until rice is done. Serve and enjoy.

EASY SWEET POTATO PIE

3-3 1/2 cups mashed sweet potatoes, or 2 large cans sweet potatoes (already mashed)

1 1/2 cups sugar

1 can eagle brand milk

1 1/2 tsp vanilla

2 - nine-inch pie shells

Mix ingredients together and put into two nine-inch pie shells. Bake 10 minutes at 450 degrees turn to 350 degrees and bake for 30 minutes.


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