White loves to cook for church friends

White loves to cook for church friends


Cathy White is a talented Southern cook who adores her family and loves to share her passion for food, especially with her grandchildren.

She's been married to Buddy White for almost 54 years and has two children Brandy (Mike) Stokes and Sam (Shanna) White, five grandchildren, Maribeth Stuart, the late Jeb Stuart, Logan White, Jackson White, Elex White, and two great-grandchildren, Jeb Grier and Gamblin Massey.

Before retiring, White managed finance companies and was involved in retail management. After retirement, she spent 15 years as a school bus driver at Neshoba Central. Her husband, Buddy, taught at Neshoba for 35 years and also drove a school bus for 50 years.

They are active members of Hope Baptist Church, where her cooking is well-known among the congregation. White’s signature dish is chicken and dressing, a recipe passed down from her mother, Earlene Pope.

Recently, she made a big pot of tomato gravy for an Easter breakfast, where all of the men cooked for the women.

“My church friends love my cooking,” she said. “For homecoming, I’m always going to fix a big pan of chicken and dressing, vegetables, salads, and sweets. I take armloads of dishes to church.”

White said she learned to cook from her mother as a young girl while helping manage household chores. Her dad, E.R. Pope, was a barber for over 40 years.

"I've been cooking since I was 12 or 13 years old," she said. When I got married, I started cooking more, and I love to cook sweets.”

She loves cooking homegrown vegetables, jams, cornbread, biscuits, fried fish, and fried chicken and said she always bakes cakes and cobblers entirely from scratch. 

Her late grandson, Jeb, especially loved her red velvet cake, which now holds a special place in her heart.

“He was a special boy,” White said. “Since we lost him, we try to go to every one of our other grandson’s games. Family means so much to us. It’s what our life revolves around.”

White enjoys spending time with her grandchildren, whether at baseball games or cooking fried squash for her great-grandchildren.

“When I get to wanting them to eat something other than fries and fried chicken, I will cook them fried fish and fried squash,” she said. “They love it.”

White said she adds her personal touch to dishes like chicken and dressing, potato salad, and pound cake, and rarely uses measurements. She prefers a pinch of this and that and only uses her recipe book for sweets.

“Sometimes my potato salad never tastes the same,” she said. “I make spaghetti with home-canned tomatoes and onions. It has a sweet taste to it.”

Although health challenges have slowed her down some recently, her passion for cooking remains undimmed, especially when her family gathers around the table. 

“I love watching folks eating and enjoying my cooking, and I like to see them eat a lot,” she exclaimed.




Cream cheese frosting-between layers:

1 8 oz. block softened cream cheese

¼ stick soft (not liquid) butter


(Mix thoroughly. Add enough sifted powdered sugar so it will spread good between the 3 layers)

White chocolate, buttercream frosting top and sides:

2 oz. white almond bork chocolate 

Dash of salt 

3 T. softened butter


1 8 oz. block softened cream cheese

(Measure 1 cup powdered sugar then sift it)

Melt chocolate blend in sugar and salt. Add butter, 1 tbsp. at a time, beating thoroughly after each addition. Add vanilla. After softening the cream cheese in microwave, gradually add sugar. If you need to thin it, add 1 tsp. hot water at a time. Spread on top and sides of cake after you have stacked the 3 layers with cream cheese frosting.


1 box red velvet cake mix

3 jumbo eggs

1 stick softened butter

¾ cup sour cream

1 ¼ cup milk

Preheat oven to 350°. Mix all ingredients a little of each at a time. Pour into 3 paper-lined cake pans and bake for 15-20 mins.


1 8 oz. really soft cream cheese

1 16 oz. block extra sharp cheddar cheese

1 8oz. block mild cheddar cheese

1 jar roasted red pepper

2 small jars chopped pimento

¼ cup mayonnaise

2 T. Worcestershire sauce

Salt and pepper to taste

Finely chopped sweet onion

A little garlic powder

Drain and chop pimento and red pepper. Grate all cheese. Mix all ingredients with your hands. Refrigerate in airtight container. 


1 big fat chicken 

1 box stuffing mix

6 boiled eggs

1 can cream of chicken soup (or 2)

1 cup finely diced sweet onion

1 cup finely diced celery

3 gallon bags of ‘good’ cornbread (can make ahead to save time)

¼ cup poultry seasoning

1 tbsp. sage

Salt and pepper to taste

1 tbsp. garlic powder

Plenty of chicken broth

(Keep in mind, I do not use a recipe. You may have to adjust to suite your own taste)

Cover your chicken with water good in a big stock pot or cook it on hi in a big slow cooker to keep broth from escaping. Extra time, but good way cool, debone and set aside chicken and broth.

Make cornbread ahead of time if you want (self-rising cornmeal, flour sugar, eggs, buttermilk, and hot bacon grease). Your dressing is only as good as your base cornbread!

Feel and finely chop onion and celery. Pour a little broth over this and microwave for about 90 seconds (You can also do this ahead of time).

Mix spices and set aside. Mix stuffing with cornbread in big bowl. Toss in all the ingredients and mix good with good clean hands. 

Grate your 6 boiled eggs in the mix. Pour home cooked broth over all until consistency of probably loose mashed potatoes. You will probably have to use some purchased broth, also cover and refrigerate until ready to bake. At baking time, stir in 3 raw eggs really well and more broth if needed. 350° for probably 1 hour 15 to 30 minutes. 

It makes a lot! Can freeze up to 2 months. Good luck!

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