Page enjoys hearty Sunday lunches

Page enjoys hearty Sunday lunches


Rita Page grew up learning the art of cooking traditional country foods like homemade biscuits, cornbread, homegrown vegetables, and desserts from her mother, the late Ruby Posey. 

“She taught me everything I know,” Page said. “She was known for her caramel cakes, pound cakes, and coconut cakes. Desserts were her favorite.”

Married to Tim Page, the couple has raised two children, Brent Page and Ginger Page Cook, and are proud grandparents to five grandchildren, Addy Lea Page, Easton Page, Brody Page, Maggie Page Peebles, and Ryder Furr.

Page has worked as a medical clerk/receptionist at Weems Community Mental Health in town for the last 10 years and attends Redeemer Baptist Church in the House community. 

One of her cherished traditions is preparing a hearty Sunday lunch of vegetables and meat for her family after church each week. 

“We have peas, cornbread, homemade tomato relish, and tomato chili sauce to go on the vegetables,” she said. “I do like to cook a big breakfast when all of them are coming, and a lot of times I make tomato gravy with it.”

Page said she also enjoys treating her family to a homemade breakfast spread featuring biscuits, bacon, sausage, scrambled eggs, grits, and tomato gravy on Saturday mornings when they come by to help her husband tend the garden.

“We always try to have a lot of tomatoes, squash and cucumbers,” Page said. “We’ve only planted peas and don’t plant butterbeans anymore, but we’ve got squash, eggplant, tomatoes, and ocrea in a little garden behind our house.”

Some of Page’s best dishes are homemade chicken and dumplings and pound cake, which reflects her "old-timey Southern homestyle cooking" approach where everything is made from scratch. 

“I have a lot of my momma’s recipes, and I love to look at community church cookbooks and pick out recipes from that,” she said. 

One treasured recipe she learned from her mother is the caramel icing, which now holds special memories of time spent together in the kitchen before she passed away.

During the Neshoba County Fair season, Page and her family retreat to their cabin, where she prepares her signature breakfast every morning and her family enjoys grilling. 

“We are always going to cook fish, fry chicken, and grill steaks and pork chops,” she said. 

Page said her essential cooking tools include a cast-iron skillet, her mother's corn stick pans, and her mother's cake pans. Her advice to aspiring cooks is to “cook with love” and to “learn to cook the good old-timey foods”.

“I just love to cook, and I am glad I’m still able to cook,” Page said. “I love to see my family enjoy it when we are all sitting down on Sundays.”


2 pkgs. of coleslaw mix

1 bunch of green onions

2 pkgs. of chicken-flavored Ramen Noodles

Small package of slivered almonds


1/2 cup sugar

3/4 cup of oil

1/3 cup white vinegar

Crush noodles before opening the package. Set aside the flavor packet. Toast the noodles and almonds until light brown. 

Mix the coleslaw mix and green onions. Add the dressing and stir well. Keep refrigerated. Before serving, add the toasted noodles and almonds. Stir well.


1 md. cabbage (chopped)    

1 finely chopped onion        

3/4 stick butter

1 can cream of mushroom soup         

1/2 lb. Velveeta cheese

Ritz cracker crumbs

Salt and pepper to taste

Chop cabbage and boil until tender in salted water. Sauté onions in butter. Add cheese in hunks. When the cheese has melted, add cream of mushroom soup. Mix together. Add strained, boiled cabbage. Season to taste. Put in 1 1/2-2 qt casserole dish. Sprinkle cracker crumbs on top and bake at 350 for 20-30 minutes or until bubbly.


1 cup butter (room temperature                

3 cups sugar

1 cup sour cream                

3 cups cake flour, sifted

1/4 tsp. soda                       

1/8 tsp. salt

6 eggs                                  

1 tsp. vanilla flavoring

Add soda and salt to cake flour. Sift 3 times. Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add sour cream and eggs (one at a time), beating well after each addition. Gradually add flour. Stir in vanilla. Mix well. Put batter into a 10-inch tube pan. Place in a cold oven and bake at 300 for 1 1/2 hours. As soon as the cake is done, run the knife around the edge and empty it.

Carmel Frosting

1 stick of butter

3 cup sugar

1 cup milk

1 tsp. vanilla flavoring

Melt butter and add 1 cup sugar in a black skillet. Turn the heat up and brown the mixture to a light golden brown. While this is browning, bring to a boil 2 cups of sugar and 1 cup of milk. This mixture needs to boil when you add the browned mixture. Cook until soft ball stage. Remove and add 1 teaspoon of vanilla flavoring. Stir until it thickens.

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