Local businesswoman Courtney Hill publishes vintage-style cookbook with family meals

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“Probably one of my favorite things to make is a good fruit pie,” Courtney Hill says. “But I save that for special occasions.” // Photo by Ryan Hill

As a kid, Courtney Hill dreamed of having her own cooking show. She loved spending time in the kitchen and dreaming up new recipes—like a miniature Martha Stewart, without the prison record

For four years, Hill was a family consumer sciences teacher, but although she loves teaching, it wasn’t the right fit. Her co-ownership and role as Chief Financial Officer at 8183 Productions allow her to run a business with her husband, but she still wanted to share her devotion to cooking. 

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Courtesy Courtney Hill

After becoming a mother to twins, she decided to start her own blog: Homemade Cooking with Courtney

“I love to eat good food, but I don’t live to cook,” Hill writes in one post. Her goal is to teach more Americans how to cook quality, homemade meals for themselves and their families, but to keep the emphasis on relationships instead of gourmet cooking. 

Her upcoming book, Homemade: The American Family Cookbook, has a similar theme, and Hill was even able to rely on one of her own family members for help. Hill’s husband Ryan is a photographer and was able to take some of the book’s photos in the family’s garage during the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

“He knows what looks good,” Hill says. “I know what tastes good.”

Hill’s priority is family life, which means that she tries to share her passion for cooking whenever possible. Hill has even included her children in a few of the videos on her blogs. 

“My daughter loves to make tiny foods,” Hill says. “My son loves to help out in any way. He’ll make pancakes on Saturday morning from start to finish. I’ve decided when they turn 13, they’re going to start cooking a meal once a week.” 

If Hill could teach her readers one thing, it would be to meal plan. Although she loves cooking, she knows that’s not the case for everyone, and that it can be time-consuming. Meal planning makes it possible to maximize the use of time and groceries, which is ultimately less costly than wasting food or eating out. 

“It doesn’t have to be chef-quality food, it just needs to be real ingredients,” Hill says. “I can make a lot of my meals from start to finish in 30 minutes.” 

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Photo by Ryan Hill

Although she doesn’t have her own cooking show (yet), Hill hopes to teach people to be confident in their own abilities and to trust their instincts—like the Bob Ross of cooking. 

“I want people to walk away thinking, ‘I could do that,’” she says. 

Homemade: The American Family Cookbook is available for pre-order from Mascot Books at $39.99.

Categories: Food & Drink