Maybe it was something in Odessa McAtee’s dressing that led her son to a career in cooking.
“He loved my dressing,” she said, speaking over the phone Thursday from her home in Louisville, Kentucky. “‘Mama, make me some dressing,’” she recalled his asking all the time.
Her turkey dressing and collard greens were his favorites. “My collard greens? I pick them, I wash them, and I make sure that they are good and clean,” she said. “When I put them in the pot, I put my ham hock and my country ham and some red dry pepper and some regular salt.”
And the turkey dressing? “My dressing is really a secret recipe.”
Taking lessons learned in part from his mother’s kitchen, David McAtee went on to become a beloved fixture on the corner of 26th Street and Broadway in the predominantly black West End neighborhood of Louisville. There, his simple