The Cooking Queen Opens Her Kitchen

Press Release, Miami, FL, September 2, 2009

Throughout her life, Linda Ogden Epling has been intrigued by food. From the time she could reach the stove, back in her hometown of Folkston, Georgia, she has lovingly created meals and used her gifts to bring people together. "I never considered a career in catering - it just happened! I made casseroles for sick friends, hosted small weddings and baby showers, and delivered delectable dishes, in my trusty ole station wagon!" Ogden Epling shared. "To think that I have come so far as to write a cookbook is a blessing from God."

Years later, from her modest home kitchen in Homestead, Florida, Ogden Epling created masterpiece meals and delivered them in the family’s station wagon. It was then that "Linda Ogden Catering" was born - a hugely successful catering business. Over the last 27 years, Ogden Epling has catered weddings and showers, political events - even the South Florida Orange Bowl and it was all during her time as a single mom raising four children, and putting them through college.

Along the way, she met and married her second husband – a wonderful, caring, gentle man who she loved deeply. She soon curtailed her catering business to devote more time to her husband and family. They traveled extensively, entertained often and hobnobbed in circles that included many of the "who’s who" in the local and state political arenas. Life was everything she could have ever imagined, until one day, her picture perfect life came crumbling down. Forced back into the life of a single woman, Ogden Epling quickly realized that she had just been handed lemons. And so, like all good cooks, she decided to use the lemons and make a lemon meringue pie!

During those difficult times, Ogden Epling sought comfort with her faith and remembered how many times her friends asked her to write a cookbook. One day, she mustered up the strength and courage to write down her recipes, and now in her 60s she is becoming an entrepreneur for the second time.

The Cooking Queen Opens Her Kitchen is a collection of her life’s memories and recipes. With each recipe there are step-by-step instructions and beautiful photos to help the reader easily recreate the dishes. It is Ogden Epling’s hope that everyone who reads the book feels as if she were right there with them cooking up yummy delights like blueberry stuffed French toast with blueberry sauce, coconut cake or baked shrimp and grits.

"God gives us each talents and abilities," Ogden Epling proclaimed. "I am so grateful to Him for gifting me with an intuitive ability to put His ingredients together in new, interesting and inspiring ways – all to the delight of my family, friends, clients, and now readers."

It was her family’s sense of humor that inspired the title of her book - The Cooking Queen Opens Her Kitchen – as well as many of the cooking tips found with the recipes. It has been a long-standing family joke that she was dubbed, "The Queen-" the Queen of the kitchen that is! And in honor of her title, she often wears a beautiful crown-shaped brooch while cooking which always gets the laughter going. It is the laughter of her family and friends that inspires Ogden Epling to create her dishes because as she proudly notes "nothing is better for bringing people together than good food and good laughs!"

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