The country superstar Dolly Parton enjoys being in the kitchen on her own, humming along to a soft rock playlist, while she cooks her favourite dishes.
Her husband Carl Dean is almost always welcome to be in the kitchen when she cooks. “I like it when he comes. A lot of times he’ll sit and watch me, or he’ll talk,” said Dolly.
She added, “But sometimes I don’t want anybody around, so I’ll just say, ‘ Why don’t you go to the den, I’ll clean this up later or you can help me later.”
After being married for more than 55 years, Dolly Parton and her husband Carl Dean have a partnership in the kitchen. Dolly does the cooking and Dean does the cleaning.
“I’m a messy cooker, and he’s good about cleaning up for me and keeping the stuff cleaned up around me,” she says.
Being in the kitchen reminds the superstar of her childhood and the special times where her mum Avie would bake cakes. Inspired by this, the singer has collaborated with Duncan Hines to launch her very own line of southern-style cake mixes and frostings. There are two different flavours to choose from- banana and coconut. This is also a homage to her southern upbringing.
“Growing up poor, we didn’t have a lot of sugar, so we didn’t have cakes all the time. So when Mama made special cakes, we loved being in the kitchen”.
Dolly has always considered the kitchen to be ‘the heart of the home’, a warm, safe space where she can show off her skills as a cook- especially her mum’s signature chicken and dumplings.
She said that she has five sisters who all cook, but she is the only one who gets compliments on how her dumplings taste exactly like their mum’s.
She says, “ To me, that’s the greatest compliment ever”.