Thanksgiving treats

Compiled by Sharna Johnson: Freedom Newspapers

Debi Lee
Portales city manager

• What is your favorite dessert?
Dr Pepper cake

• Why is that your favorite?
Because it’s chocolate and it’s rich. You can only stand to eat it once or twice a year.

• How often do you eat it?
Holidays

• Who makes it the best?
I do. My mother-in-law, Dorothy Lee, probably made it the best and she taught me before she passed away. Everything has to be just right or it flattens like a pancake. You have to preheat the oven and after you put it in, don’t let the kids jump around and don’t open the oven.

• Do you have a memory involving this dessert?
My son was a good athlete in Aztec and the football team needed motivation. It started with the kicker — my son told him, “If you can kick a field goal, my mom will make you a cake.” Then my son promised that if they would win, his mom would make a cake.

I said, “You gotta win — no ties, no good tries. You gotta win.” I made cakes every home game, every Friday night. I made about 15 cakes because they kept winning and they’re hard to make. I had to take part of the afternoons on Fridays off so I could go home and make cakes. I had to change my schedule to make them. The coach wasn’t real happy. He wanted them to eat healthy.

Richard Gomez
Lighthouse Mission
director

• What is your favorite dessert?
Sweet potato pie with Coolwhip

• Why is that your favorite?
I didn’t eat a lot of it growing up, so I acquired a taste for it as an adult.

• How often do you eat it?
At Thanksgiving or at a restaurant

• Who makes it the best?
Velma (Jackson). She used to have Velma’s restaurant — man she made it delicious.

• Do you have a memory involving this dessert?
I first ate it at my mother-in-law’s house in Espanola. I didn’t want to taste it. I don’t like to taste new things, but I did and I didn’t want to stop eating it.

Mark Ribaudo
Eastern New Mexico University football coach

• What is your favorite dessert?
My mother’s cheesecake. It’s New York-style cheesecake, like the kind you get in a deli for $5 a slice. Sometimes she puts strawberries on it — I like it plain.

• Why is that your favorite?
Man alive — it’s something else. She’s a little Italian lady from New Jersey. Stereotypically, she can cook like nobody on this Earth. God, can she cook.
n How often do you eat it?
Maybe twice a year. It’s hard, it’s painful. My kids always want some. We fight over it.

• Who makes it the best?
My mother; it’s the best I’ve ever had.

• Do you have a memory involving this dessert?
Just fighting with my kids over who gets to eat it … how big a piece … who gets the last piece. It’s funny to see a grown man, a 5- and 7-year-old fight over cheesecake. My mom thinks she makes it for them. I think they are too young to appreciate it — it’s mine.

Jana Stanfield
Singer, songwriter and graduate of Portales High School

• What is your favorite dessert?
Tiramisu.

• Why is that your favorite?
It’s exotic. It’s not too sweet. You can’t find it very many places. I try to just have the things you can’t get in too many places. It’s a special occasion when I eat it.

• How often do you eat it?
She has it maybe every two weeks due to travel.

• Who makes it the best?
There’s a place in Nashville down by the Solid Gold strip club. It’s a little Italian place called Nick’s. It’s a little embarrassing to be parked there, but it’s worth it to get the eggplant lasagna and Tiramisu.

• Do you have a memory involving this dessert?
My first memory of having Tiramisu was when my husband took me to stay at the Peabody Hotel in Memphis. They have ducks that come down the elevator every morning … and they swim in the pool in the lobby. That’s the first place I had Tiramisu. I always love it because of it.

Jerry Large
Clovis native and newspaper columnist for the Seattle Times

• What is your favorite dessert?
Peach cobbler

• Why is that your favorite?
My mother always made it really, really good — I got addicted. It’s sweet and it’s got fruit so you can tell yourself it’s good for you. It feels homey. It’s the cinnamon and the nutmeg; spicy, it’s a really nice flavor.

• How often do you eat it?
Not often enough. Probably four to five times a year nowadays. You can’t get peach cobbler here (in Seattle) as good as you can get in Clovis. I have to wait till I come home once a year, then I always have peach cobbler.

• Who makes it the best?
Mother makes it the best. I tried to make it and it was OK, but it wasn’t the same. She doesn’t really measure when she makes it. It’s imprecise.

• Do you have a memory involving this dessert?
I had it once, I dumped a bunch of ice cream on it and I was going to eat it. I set it down and my brother stepped in it. I was really disappointed — I remember how ready I was to dig in to it when he stepped in it.