Side Dish: Don’t duck Miss Kay’s cookbook

“Miss Kay’s Duck Commander Kitchen: Faith, Family, & Food — Bringing Our Home to Your Table” by Kay Robertson with Chrys Howard.

Howard Books, $22.99.

236-page paperback.

With all the recent hubbub about Phil Robertson of the “Duck Dynasty” television show, it seemed like the right time to review “Miss Kay’s Duck Commander Kitchen: Faith, Family, & Food — Bringing Our Home to Your Table” cookbook written by Phil’s wife, Kay Robertson, with assistance from Chrys Howard.

Since both Phil and Kay Robertson are from north Louisiana, I was expecting a book filled only with that region’s favorite traditional Deep South recipes, such as fried chicken; mustard greens; macaroni and cheese; fried steak and white sauce; biscuits; cornbread; and banana pudding. To be sure, those recipes are in the book, but there are some surprises, too. For example, pork and chicken chow mein is among Phil Robertson’s favorite recipes.

Another surprise, Phil Robertson has been cooking since he was a child, and he and “Miss Kay” learned to cook Cajun food together. The book includes recipes for Phil’s sauce piquante, his crawfish fettuccine and his jambalaya.

Recipes are divided into 11 chapters, including, of course, one for wild game. There are recipes for Phil’s Duck Gumbo, Squirrel With Soup Gravy and Fried Deer Steak. Other recipes include Willie’s Famous Chicken Strips, Banana Nut Cake With Caramel Icing, Willie’s Crazy Bread and Blackberry Jam Cake.

Fans of the “Duck Dynasty” show will love the book since it is illustrated with plenty of full-color photographs of the Robertson clan — including a few of the menfolk without beards.

While a recipe for Mississippi mud pie isn’t in Miss Kay’s book, it seems like a dessert the Robertsons might enjoy. Some Baton Rouge Art League certainly do.

Susan Smith, president of the Baton Rouge Art League, knows how to get an organization’s committee members to show up at meetings. Entice them with lunch.

She’s a good cook and she has plenty of other good cooks heading up various committees.

At a recent committee meeting, Smith served a delicious chicken and sausage gumbo accompanied by a yummy cole slaw. The dessert, a variation of Mississippi mud pie, was made by Millie Bonacorso.

“This is the best version of Mississippi mud pie that I’ve had,” a committee member said.

Bonacorso received several requests for the recipe, which she shared.

Now I just need to get those gumbo and cole slaw recipes.

Cheramie Sonnier is The Advocate’s Food editor. Her email address is

Millie’s 4-Layer Delight

Serves 12. Recipe is from Millie Bonacorso.

1 1/2 cups flour

1 1/2 sticks margarine (I use Imperial.)

1 cup chopped roasted pecans

Water as needed

8 ozs. cream cheese

2 cups powdered sugar, divided

2 (8-oz.) containers of Cool Whip

1 large box and 1 small box of chocolate instant pudding mix

3 cups milk

Chocolate curls made from a Hershey’s milk chocolate bar

Chopped cherries, for garnish

Chopped roasted pecans, for garnish

1. Make dessert in an 8-inch-by-12-inch glass baking casserole dish. For the crust, mix flour, margarine and 1 cup chopped pecans. Sprinkle with water as needed for proper consistency. Press mixture into a crust. (I put on gloves and press the dough down hard in the dish.) Bake crust 15 minutes at 325 degrees or until light brown. Cool.

2. For the second layer, mix cream cheese, 1 cup powdered sugar and 1 container of Cool Whip. Spread on the cooled crust and refrigerate.

3. For the third layer, mix both boxes of instant pudding mix with 3 cups of milk and beat for 5 minutes. Pour over second layer and return to refrigerator.

4. Mix remaining cup of powdered sugar with remaining container of Cool Whip and spread over third layer. Use a potato peeler to make chocolate curls with the Hershey’s bar. Top dessert with chopped cherries and sprinkle with chopped roasted pecans. Chill for 4 hours before serving.

Editor’s note: This story was changed on Jan. 17, 2014, to add flour to the list of ingredients and the instructions.