What’s cooking?: Taste of Home show returns to Bedford on Sept. 24

Many people have eaten food derived from a Taste of Home cookbook and didn’t even know it. The nationally renowned brand has existed for generations and helps its readers prepare tasty appetizers, meals and desserts using ordinary ingredients.

Drawing from recipes inspired from its books and magazines, the Taste of Home Cooking Show will return to Bedford on Sept. 24.

The demonstration will feature TOH cooking specialist Dana Elliott. The 10-year TOH veteran, who holds a culinary management degree from The Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale, will teach the audience how to easily create flavorful meals the whole family will enjoy.

“This show is for all cooks – seasoned and otherwise. TOH recipes are written in easy-to-read, easy-to-follow instructions. The ingredients, for the most part, will already be in your pantry,” Elliott said.

The TOH cooking show is the only event of its kind held in the area this fall. Held annually in Bedford, it is sponsored by the Bedford County Chamber of Commerce. Kellie Goodman Shaffer, president and chief executive officer of the Bedford Chamber, said the show differs each year and is geared toward every cooking level – from novices to the experienced.

“If you watch the Food channel or like cooking segments, you’ll enjoy the show. It’s designed for people who cook a lot or little. Whether you want to make meals for families, special occasions, or entertaining – you’ll find it realistic, fun and interactive,” Goodman Shaffer said.

Elliott agreed: “We have super recipes lined up.”

“Everything from appetizers to desserts. Whether you’re entertaining guests, tailgating or preparing a family meal, there will be something for everyone,” Elliott added.

The doors will open before the cooking show for a special vendor display. About 30 vendors attended last year’s event, and a similar turnout is expected this year. The vendors range from dishware to make-up products and everything in between.

“The vendor show is a great community of direct sale, home-based businesses. There are lots of small businesses that participate, from local boutiques to community service organizations. It’s a good way to be connected to the business community of Bedford County and to get a jump start on holiday shopping,” Goodman Shaffer said.

Local business leaders rally around the vendor exhibits and the cooking demonstration.

“Our show volunteers are business leaders, bankers, insurance agents, accountants and more. They’re all really great cooks and come out the night before to help prepare dishes and then serve as onstage help during the show,” she said.

The volunteers will assist with the eight recipes lined up for the show.

“We shortened the show by two recipes, giving us more time to really talk through the recipes and answer some questions. They (the recipes) will be demonstrated step-by-step live, with all kinds of bonus tips and tricks. Videos and additional recipes will be included in the program guide,” Elliott said.

She is looking forward to a fun evening where she will be able to share her cooking expertise with the community.

Added Elliott, “I love being onstage and sharing new recipes. Everyone’s excited about food.”