Denise's BIO Ms. Denise Harding lives in Lafayette, Louisiana, where her occupation is as pastry chef and a cookbook author. In addition to her culinary skills, Denise also braids woolen rugs.
Denise learned to work with woolen materials at home watching her mother, Margaret Harding, who had learned from her aunt. Mrs. Margaret Harding demonstrated the making of braided rugs for twenty years, prior to her death in 1995. Denise uses the same techniques and materials her mother used when demonstrating her rug making. She begins by dying woolen materials, which are usually blankets cut into strips. Denise then uses an 1800s manual sewing machine, a wooden guide, some thread (waxed twine), and needles to braid and sew the strips together into a rug.
Ms. Harding has also made Cajun and Creole pastries for eight years and has authored two Cajun and Creole cookbooks based on her grandmother's recipes, most of which are over a hundred years old. Denise learned to cook pastries from her grandmother. She longer demonstrated her braided rugs.
Cajun and Creole Cooking - Food Historian Denise is fifth generation to the founder of Lafayette, Louisiana and has a rich and extensive knowledge of Cajun and Creole heritage. She has been demonstrating and selling Cajun and Creole pastries for over 30 years at area festivals and events. She is a Pastry Chef and has compiled two cookbooks with her grandmother's recipes, some of which are 100 years old.