Paula Deen was born on January 19, 1947 in Albany, Georgia. She attended Albany High School, and married not long after. In 1989 she divorced Jimmy Deen, to whom she had been married since 1965. Deen took her cooking experience and began a catering service in Savannah, Georgia. Deen began by making sandwiches and other meals and her sons Jamie and Bobby delivered the food.
The business was called The Bag Lady. It was successful and soon outgrew her kitchen. On January 8, 1996, Deen opened her first restaurant, The Lady & Sons, in Savannah. The southern style menu was very well received. Deen’s restaurant was very popular and she soon opened a second establishment. The “Paula Deen Buffet” at Harrah’s Tunica Casino in Tunica, Mississippi opened in 2008.
Deen has released several cookbooks. In 1997 Deen published The Lady & Sons Savannah Country Cooking and The Lady & Sons Savannah Country Cooking 2. The books were very successful and she has released two more since.
Deen began her relationship with The Food Network in 1999. Deen guest starred and was featured in several shows on the network. She was given her own show in 2002. Paula’s Home Cooking, was successful and lead to the premiere of two more shows. Paula’s Party and Paula’s Best Dishes were debuted in 2006 and 2008. In June 2007, Deen won a Daytime Emmy Awards for Paula’s Home Cooking.
In April 2007 the publishing compnay Simon & Schuster published Deen’s memoir, It Ain’t All About the Cookin’. Deen also launched a lifestyle magazine called Cooking with Paula Deen in 2005. The magazine claimed a circulation of 7.5 million in March, 2009.
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