My mother is a good cook. She might be a great cook. She favors pies and cakes and excels in vegetables.

She’s not a gourmet cook, specializing in exotic ingredients, but more of a cook who makes homey food, prepared for the taste with an eye to be mouth watering.

She uses doilies liberally and knows how to dress a cake with a rose from the garden.

When Brother Neil and I were growing up, she always made Sunday dinner.

Her mother taught her to make real coconut pie and her sisters were some of the best cake makers.

I loved the fried apple pies she made out of biscuit dough. My cousins were always calling to get the recipes for them, but that seems strange because their mother was a good cook too.

She loves garlic, sometimes to the detriment of everyone else because it is possible that whole pieces might show up in her chili. She loves pepper flakes on almost everything. Both tendencies can be a bit dangerous, certainly disconcerting for the unsuspecting.

She watches cooking shows and has been collecting recipes for as long as I can remember.

She shows her love through her cooking and baking.

No one, I mean no one makes chicken salad like she does.

We thought it might be good to get that on YouTube. None of us really want anyone to make it but her, but we thought for posterity…

She assembled ingredients, in little cups, just like Ina. She was quite happy with the prospect of internet stardom. Some of us manned the technical end and it was ready, set, action.

She acted like Paula. She smiled liked Sandra. She flirted like Gaida.

She was a natural.

Our cameras failed.

She fussed like Martha.

We discussed whether it was technical malfunction or operator error. Unresolved but persistent, those of us behind the camera got back behind the camera, a gallon of the best chicken salad in the whole world rested in the frig and finally we convinced her of take 2, to make coleslaw this time around.

She makes the best slaw you’ve ever tasted.

She applied more lipstick, mumbled a bit under her breath and then loudly at the ineptitude of her camera crew and got out her ingredients.

We’ve not going to quit our day jobs for a stab at cinematography. We are going to remember the day of filming with Doris, the taste of the chicken salad and coleslaw made with loving hands, and what a blessing she is…And what about you? At the very least,  you too can make the best coleslaw ever