There’s a connection that happens when friends and family join together around the table. It’s more than sharing a meal, it’s sharing time together. It’s this connection that inspired Stacey Little, New York Times best-selling cookbook author and lifestyle blogger, to build his platform, Southern Bite, into what it is today.
An Alabama native, Little has lived a legacy of Southern food, enjoying recipes from his mother, grandmother and great-grandmother from since he was a child. Little grew up in Prattville and went on to earn his bachelor’s degree in Communications at Auburn University in Montgomery as well as a national certification in nonprofit management.
Little began writing restaurant reviews on the side for the Montgomery Advertiser in 2006. When the paper pulled their restaurant reviews section, Little started a blog where he continued to review local restaurants.
“There weren’t many food blogs at the time. People began to rely on Southern Bite for restaurant reviews,” says Little.
Little, who has always cooked with family recipes, often was asked by friends and neighbors for his recipes. One night after another recipe request, Little decided to post it onto the blog. He had no idea that this effort to save time would be the starting point for a much larger journey.
“Over time, I came to find that more and more people were coming to the blog for recipes than reviews,” Little says. “I evolved the blog to feature only recipes and it’s continued to grow ever since.”
More than the food, Little is driven by the connections made by sharing food.
“Food is important but the connections we make with our family over food are more important. Food is really the conduit to how we make these connections,” says Little.
And through Southern Bite, Little hopes to make these connections a little bit more attainable for today’s cooks.
For Little, cooking is still a family affair. His seven-year-old son, Jack, loves being in the kitchen and wife, Heather, is often helping Little think outside the box in recipe development.
“I realized in writing this book that family exceeds blood. People have connected through the book and we are able to share something that is special beyond our immediate family,” explains Little.
A favorite place for Little’s family to gather together is at the lake. Little has traveled to Lake Jordan and Lake Martin his entire life and still finds a way to make a weekend escape with his family.
“Just like food, water is a conduit for bringing family together. I have so many good memories of my time at the lake and it’s a place my family enjoys reconnecting at today,” Little recalls.
In this issue of Shorelines, Little shares his favorite easy recipes perfect for a weekend away. We’re loving “Heather’s Buffalo Chicken Dip,” just in time for March Madness basketball watching or feeding a crowd on Spring Break.
Learn more about Stacey and find more recipes just like this at www.southernbite.com. Photo credit: Kim Box Photography.