Gail Cobb grew up watching her grandmother cook
by Margaret Anderson
Special to The Star
Jan 22, 2014 | 1221 views |  0 comments | 44 44 recommendations | email to a friend | print
When Gail Rogers Cobb was growing up in Piedmont, she spent a lot of time with her grandmother, Mary “Lizzie” Rogers. She learned a lot by watching her grandmother prepare meals.

Gail admits to not being that good of a cook when she and her husband, Frank, married because they were young. She was 17 and he was 18.

But by the time their three children were born, she had become quite adept at preparing meals. She doesn’t cook a hot meal every day now, but that’s not the case when her children were younger.

“When the children were home, I cooked every night. We all ate together as a family whenever possible.”

The Cobbs have been married 41 years. They have two daughters and a son.

Tasha Adkison lives in Jacksonville. Mandy Floyd lives in Piedmont with her children, Ethan, 13, and Ella Grace, 9. Their son and daughter-in-law, Ryan and the former Kendra Ledbetter, live on Possum Trot Road between Jacksonville and Piedmont with their daughters, Lauren, 13, and Kaitlyn, 9.

Frank is a member of the city council. He is also co-owner of Precision Machine in Piedmont.

Gail was born in Caribou, Maine, when her father, a Piedmont native, was stationed at Limestone Air Force Base near Caribou. She moved to Piedmont as a young child. Her parents, Dueal and Joyce Rogers, are deceased. Her mother was the owner/operator of The Jean Barn in Piedmont until her death.

Gail was one of five children. Growing up, both her parents worked at Standard Coosa Thatcher Company. She lived in what was called “the mill village” area of Piedmont. She remembers how meticulous everyone kept their property.

“Now that the older residents are gone, some of the properties have been neglected, and the area is declining,” she said. “I’m very proud of the stand the current city administration has taken on the issue of abatement and neglected properties. I hope their interest will help this area of the city that is very dear to my heart.”

She graduated from Piedmont High School and attended Gadsden State and Jacksonville State University. She and Frank are members of Piedmont Congregational Holiness Church. She is getting ready for the church’s Easter drama which she will direct. She also directed last year’s Easter drama and Christmas program.

Gail and Frank enjoy camping with their grandchildren.

“We have a travel trailer, and we love to camp,” she said. “We go to different places, but we love Townsend, Tenn.”

Every Halloween, she hosts a party.

“I love to decorate the yard for the kids that trick or treat in the neighborhood,” she said. “It has evolved into a rather large outdoor party over the years. The same people come year after year for chili, hotdogs, and homemade Halloween treats.”

Gail has worked for Anniston Police Department for the past 11 years. She is currently the unit supervisor for records and communications. Her first job with APD was a records clerk. She was then promoted to shift supervisor. After being promoted to unit supervisor, she vowed to always treat those who she supervised the way she would like to be treated.

She said she loves her job.

“Our unit strives to assist the public in the most efficient and courteous manner possible,” she said. “I love everyone I work with at APD. They are all a great group of people.”

Gail said that at the end of the day, she hopes she’s done something to help someone.

Gail often prepares Jalapeno Corn Casserole for her family. This recipe was given to her by her daughter-in-law’s mother, Mary Ann Reeves. Gail said this is her most requested dish to take to any church or family function.

Lemon Supreme Cake was her grandmother Rogers’ recipe. Mrs. Rogers taught Gail how to prepare southern dishes such as cornbread, buttermilk biscuits, blackberry jam and banana pudding, without a recipe. When her grandparents were living, the family would gather at their house for Sunday dinner, and her grandmother would serve this cake.

Chocolate Pie one of her aunt Agnes Rogers’ recipes.

“She was the best southern cook,” said Gail. “Her specialty was making pickles from cucumbers in the summertime. Sadly, I didn’t learn this art from her.”

Gail’s mother, Joyce, often prepared Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies.

“There were five children in our house when I was growing up,” said Gail. “She would fill the cookie jar full of these cookies throughout the year but always at Christmastime. It’s still a favorite of my children and grandchildren. My mother was an excellent cook. Turkey dressing at Thanksgiving and baked beans for summertime cookouts were family favorites.”

Contact Margaret at


Jalapeno Corn Casserole

2 - 25-29 oz. whole kernel corn
2 - 8 oz. cream cheese, softened
1 jar jalapeno mild peppers
8 oz. sharp shredded cheddar cheese, plus cheese for topping

Drain corn. Beat cream cheese until smooth. Add the liquid only from the peppers in with cream cheese. Add corn. Chop as many peppers in mixture as you want. The more peppers the spicier it is. Add cheese.

Bake at 350 degrees for 45-60 minutes in greased dish. The middle should be set, but the casserole will not be firm. During the last 5-10 minutes, put some shredded cheddar on top.

Lemon Supreme Cake

1 Duncan Hines Lemon Supreme cake mix
1 - 11.5 can apricot nectar
½ c. oil
4 eggs
½ c. sugar

Mix cake mix, sugar, oil and nectar together. Next, add one egg at a time. Bake in tube pan at 325 degrees for one hour. Cool upright for 15 minutes. Then remove from pan. Mix 1 c. powdered sugar and juice of 1 lemon. Pour over cake while warm to make a glaze.

Chocolate Pie

2/3 c. sugar
4 T. cocoa
4 T. flour
3 egg yolks
1 ½ c. milk
1 T. butter
1/8 t. salt
1 t. vanilla

Blend sugar, cocoa and flour. Add yolks and milk. Cook in double boiler until creamy. Add butter, salt and vanilla. Pour into unbaked pie shell.

Beat 3 egg whites until stiff, gradually adding 4 T. sugar while beating. Cover pie filling with beaten egg whites. Cook in 350 degree oven until topping is browned. Cool completely before cutting.

Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

2 c. sugar
3 T. cocoa
½ stick butter
½ c. milk
2-3 c. oatmeal
1 t. vanilla
½ c. peanut butter

Combine sugar, cocoa, butter, and milk in saucepan. Cook on medium heat until mixture comes to a boil. After the first bubble, cook 2 minutes. Remove from heat. Add vanilla and peanut butter. Next add 2 c. oatmeal, adding more if needed. The mixture should be thick enough to stop by spoonfuls onto wax paper. They harden quickly.
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Gail Cobb grew up watching her grandmother cook by Margaret Anderson
Special to The Star

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