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Oprah’s Culinary Love Story: The Romance of ‘Hot Water Cornbread’ for Stedman Graham

Oprah and Stedman Graham
Oprah and Stedman Graham (Credits: Billboard)

To capture Stedman Graham’s heart, Oprah Winfrey reveals in this week’s featured article that she expresses her affection for her longtime partner through a simple culinary gesture. Renowned for her love, Oprah discloses to PEOPLE that her most romantic act involves crafting a straightforward delicacy – hot water cornbread.

The traditional Southern pan-fried cornmeal cakes, typically enriched with ingredients like vegetable shortening or butter, take on a minimalist form in Winfrey’s rendition. Her recipe consists solely of cornmeal, water, and oil, embodying the nostalgic essence of this age-old dish cherished by mothers worldwide.

Oprah and Stedman Graham

Oprah and Stedman Graham (Credits: USA Today)

Despite its simplicity, Graham consistently finds delight in this classic creation. Oprah attests, “Every time I do it, it’s like the most romantic thing I’ve ever done.” In reciprocating gestures of love, Graham, in his own subtle way, engages in a weekly ritual – fetching The New York Times every Sunday and presenting it to Winfrey.

Sharing insights into Graham’s eclectic palate, Oprah discloses his fondness for octopus, a preference that extends to breakfast. The unique mollusk, complete with tentacles and a head, frequently occupies their refrigerator. Winfrey elaborates on Graham’s preferred preparation, noting his preference for searing or sautéing it with okra and greens.

Despite Graham’s adventurous culinary spirit, Oprah confesses that she never partakes in octopus feasts, emphasizing that he stands alone in savoring this particular delicacy. For those curious about obtaining a whole octopus, Oprah recommends a visit to a specialized fish market.

In addition to culinary revelations, Oprah delves into her perspective on gratitude as an integral part of her life. Reflecting on her transformative role in the 1985 Oscar-nominated film “The Color Purple,” she describes it as a spiritual awakening that reshaped her outlook. Oprah emphasizes the practice of starting and concluding each day with a heartfelt “Thank you,” a habit she believes fosters a mindset of abundance rather than scarcity. As she gears up for the premiere of the musical movie adaptation of “The Color Purple” on Christmas Day, a film co-produced with Steven Spielberg, Oprah encourages everyone to embrace gratitude as a life-affirming practice.

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