Actress Sandra Shipley has always enjoyed the cooking craft.
"I've always cooked. My mom was a great cook," said Shipley.
The basics of the culinary art, Shipley said, she finds fairly easy and she knows her way around the kitchen.
The actress, a native of Kent, England, is currently one of the stars in "Anything Goes," running through May 5 at Chicago's Cadillac Palace Theatre. FYI: (800) 775-2000
Shipley said she often travels with an electric skillet and an electric kettle so she can make her own meals when she's on tour and it's convenient.
"I hate not being in control of what I'm eating," she said, adding it's important for her to make her own meals.
Baking is a favorite hobby of Shipley's and she enjoys making a Buttermilk Lemon Pie as well as English trifles. Her lemon pie recipe, she said, is a great party dish.
English trifles, she explained, are wonderful to bring to a variety of celebrations.
When it comes to savory dishes, Shipley said favorites include lasagna, which she said she makes in Northern Italian-style with a Bechamel sauce as well as a Chicken Marbella from "The Silver Palate Cookbook."
"I make a good lasagna," the actress said.
It's been Shipley's experience that actors and artists like to eat and she said it's always wonderful to share a meal with food lovers.
"What we do on stage is celebrating a life and eating great food is a major life event," she said.
Shipley said she learned to cook from her mother, who learned to cook in one of the big houses in England similar to Downton Abbey.
"She grew up around food and I grew up watching her cook."
When Shipley isn't cooking for herself, she said she'll often order seafood, vegetable dishes and Italian food when she goes out to eat.
Try the following recipe for Buttermilk Lemon Pie, which is a favorite of Shipley's. The actual recipe, a rendition of Shipley's, comes from Taste of Home.
Buttermilk Lemon Pie
Pastry for single-crust pie (9 inches)
1 cup sugar
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups buttermilk
1/4 cup butter, melted
1/3 cup lemon juice
1 tablespoon grated lemon peel
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
DIRECTIONS: Line a 9-inch pie plate with pastry. Trim, seal and flute edges; set aside.(Or use a ready-made crust). In a large bowl, combine the sugar, flour and salt. In a large bowl, beat the buttermilk, eggs, butter, lemon juice, lemon peel and vanilla. Add to sugar mixture; mix well. Pour into crust. Sprinkle with nutmeg. Bake at 400 degrees for 10 minutes. Reduce temperature to 325 degrees; bake 40-45 minutes longer or until a knife inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack. Store in the refrigerator. Yield: 6-8 servings.