Cindy McCannon knows what she likes to eat on a cold winter day:
The Crème of Mushroom Soup that chef Tim Young simmers in the kitchen of the Buffalo Bar and Grill.
Young will be cooking up Crème of Mushroom and one other kind of soup for A Taste of Rim Country.
Young and seven more of Rim Country's culinary notables and organizations will share their talents with appetizers and desserts between the bookshelves at the Payson Public Library.
A Taste of Rim Country benefits the library expansion project.
Tim Young is the executive chef at the Buffalo Bar and Grill, owned by Mike and Cindy McCannon.
The Buffalo is located at 311 S. Beeline Hwy., Payson (928) 474-3900.
Tim will be making Crème of Mushroom Soup, because it is Cindy's favorite.
Tim, what is your favorite dish to cook?
What do you love to eat?
What is the most complicated dish you have ever made?
What / who inspired your love of cooking?
"My mother got me into baking cookies when I was a little boy."
When did you start cooking?
"When I was 13 or 14 years old, my uncle owned The Little Giant Drive-in with car hops, near Battle Creek, Michigan. I worked summers for $1 an hour."
Do you have formal training?
"No, I have just worked with a lot of chefs over the years. I picked up different things from every chef I worked with. I have been cooking professionally for 34 years, now."
What is the most valuable lesson you have learned?
"Always taste your food."
What was your worst cooking disaster?
"I spent hours making Twice Baked Potatoes for a party of 60. I turned the oven on too high, burned them and had to start from scratch."
What is the hardest part of your job?
"I don't know if there is a hardest part. I enjoy every aspect. Being on my feet for long hours, I guess that's hard."
What do you love most about what you do?
"Getting to be creative making daily specials and daily soups. I like taking care of special customer requests and doing things that aren't on the menu. Making the customer happy, that's what we're here for."
Do you have advice for someone who wants to starts cooking?
"Put your whole heart into it. Try to learn as much as you can from everyone you work with, that's been my success. Every day is a learning opportunity, so don't let the opportunity slip by."
Is there a trade secret everyone who cooks should know?
"If I told you, I'd have to kill you."
What is in your refrigerator at home?
"Fresh vegetables, cheddar cheese and milk. You've got to have milk."
How long have you been in Payson?
"Seven years. I've been at the Buffalo since July 2007."
What is your ultimate career goal?
"I'm semi-retired right now. I am happy where I am. I really enjoy working with the McCannons. This is a nice place."
Is there a cookbook in your future?
"I don't really think so. I learned from chefs over the years who didn't use recipes. I don't write anything down, so it's all in my head. I don't know how you'd make a cookbook like that. It'd have to be a video."
A Taste of Rim Country is scheduled to begin at 5 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 23 between the bookshelves at the Payson Public Library.
General admission tickets are available now for purchase at the library.
Fifty percent of the $30 ticket cost is tax-deductible. Funds raised will go toward the $1.4 million library expansion project, designed to fit the growing needs of Payson. The plan calls for a 5,500-square-foot wing stocked with wireless Internet access, 20 computer terminals and extra space.