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Culinary Delights

Cookbook, cooking show
make local chef famous

Keeton has taped 13 shows
for WBKI in Kentucky

By Helen E. McKinney
Contributing Writer

(October 2010) – Shawn Keeton knows a good recipe when he sees one. Adding a little bit of this and a little bit of that has earned him two cookbooks and a cooking show project as a way to share his culinary expertise.
Two years ago, Keeton began teaching cooking classes at the Carroll County Cooperative Extension Office and other locations in the area. He said the experience was “a way to spread the word and give back to the community.”

Shawn Keeton

Photo provided

Local chef Shawn
Keeton will celebrate
the release of his first
cookbook on Nov. 4.

Keeton had been working on a cookbook and established a website about his passion of cooking. “The classes are a little different,” he said. “They focus on having fun while learning. I want people to enjoy it.”
Grace Angotti, Carroll County Cooperative Extension Agent for Family and Consumer Sciences, said, “He has been doing some great programs on cooking a variety of different foods at our office.”
“The cookbook is part of a series of three books,” said Keeton, 39. The first book, “Keeton in the Kitchen: A Celebration of Family, Friends and Food,” should be released by Nov. 4. It is a 200-page hardcover publication by Acclaim Press containing 90 recipes. It will premier at the Kentucky Book Fair in November, and he has already booked a signing in the St. Louis area.
In addition to recipes, the cookbook contains stories by Keeton about growing up in the Carrollton area. He wanted to give the first book a local flavor so local readers could use ingredients found in their own gardens.
“The second book will not debut until late next year,” said Keeton, who now lives in Campbellsburg, Ky. This will give him ample time to promote the first book. He hopes the first book will go national, to aid in promoting his other cooking projects, which consists of a third cookbook and TV show.
He is currently working on a special to air the week of Thanksgiving. Keeton has taped eight of the 13 episodes required for a full season of “Keeton in the Kitchen.” The shows will air on WBKI in the Louisville, Florence and Lexington areas as well as Indiana and northern Tennessee.
“I cook all different kinds of things,” he said of the show schedule. Keeton’s 12-year-old son, Clay, is his co-host. Clay appears to already be following in his father’s footsteps because “he is working on writing his own cookbook,” said Keeton.
Each episode of “Keeton in the Kitchen” will focus on a different style of cooking. Included will be gardening, grilling and canning segments.
“He’s a fabulous cook,” said his wife, Shelley Keeton. Her job requires her to work one hour away, and when she gets home, he often has “dinner on the table and half the dishes done,” she said.
Keeton said he does a lot of Cajun cooking, having been influenced by his in-laws. Shelley’s grandmother was French Cajun, and as a child she lived in Baton Rouge, La.
“It’s been an amazing experience for all of us,” she said about his culinary career. Keeton attended Eastern Kentucky University and then transferred to the University of Louisville after completing his sophomore year. He graduated from U of L in 1994 with a history degree and for a time ran Shawn’s Sporting Goods in La Grange, Ky.
Keeton said he is focused on teaching the “how” of cooking. This is the goal of his book series. “I want people to read and use the books.”

• For more information on Chef Shawn Keeton, visit www.KeetonInTheKitchen.com.

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