Christmas cuisine: A Q&A with author/Log writer Pam Griffin

Staff Writer
The Destin Log

Pam Griffin wears many hats at The Destin Log. She is the news assistant, faith editor, entertainment writer, calendar creator and community editor to name a few. She also is a published author. Her latest book is a collection of Christmasy culinary creations and as her food tasters we at The Log decided we’d share her work in this Q&A.

Q: What is your latest book about?

A: “Christmas Appetizers ‘Round the World” offers recipes for hors d’oeuvres, canapés and other “starters” that are served in countries around the world. Among the recipes are cheese balls, spreads and dips from the United States, as well as Australian Sausage Balls, Pinoy Calamares and Keftedakia from Greece. Molly Mosher of the Walton Sun worked as my appetizer chef for this project and did a great job. The recipes are tested and tasted by Log/Sun staff — and named the best of the best.

Q: What inspired you about this book?

A: Christmas foods, like many recipes are handed down from generation to generation, and the recipes become part of a family’s, or a country’s, or traditions. And many of the foods we, in America, eat during the holidays have been brought to this country from Europe and have a rich history.

Q: What was your favorite dish in the book and why?

A: I love the two cheese balls, the Spicy Cheese Ball and the Red and Green Cheese Ball. They offer not only different flavorings but are also holiday colorful rolled in paprika or fresh parsley. Also, the Cranberry Spread is delicious. And most of the recipes are easy to make.

Q: What's your favorite Christmas cooking memory?

A: My mother loved to have open houses during the Christmas season for all the people in the clubs she and my father belonged to, plus friends and business associates. I can remember her cooking and peeling maybe 20-25 pounds of the large shrimp for these parties, plus making dips and hot and cold appetizers. Worked for weeks. She liked to do it all by herself — no catering.

Q: What past books have you written?

A: “The Heavenly Delights Cookbook” in 2010 with 745 recipes was a fundraiser for Mission Love Seeds. The little card/pamphlet books are “Sounds of Christmas in 2011” and “Christmas Cookies ‘Round the World” in 2012. I have also made a cookbook of our family’s favorite recipes called “Secrets for My Daughter.”

Q: What project will you tackle next?

A: This is the last little card/pamphlet type book. The publisher isn’t going to make them anymore. I am still working on a book for them about “Mothers in the Bible,” but I get sidetracked by cookbooks. I want to do a cookbook for children — some foods they like and can make by themselves. This would be a fundraiser for Destin-based Mission Love Seeds, and use photos of the children in the Philippines throughout the book.

Q: How can readers get the book?

A: I will be selling the book at Destin United Methodist Church at the Fall Flair Craft Show Sept. 6 and 7. The book is also available at or you can email me at and place an order. The best thing about the book is that for the price of $5, it comes with an envelope and makes a wonderful Christmas card that friends, family or business associates can save and really use year round. Kind of a card and gift combined.

I also have a few copies of my past books as well. A portion of proceeds from all my books goes to Mission Love Seeds to help feed the children in the Philippines.