A Spotlight On Allrecipes Allstar: Lisa Lynn Backus

Always up for a party, Allstar Lisa Lynn celebrates the small moments one sip at a time.



Lisa Lynn is one of the 60 million cooks in our Allrecipes community and an Allrecipes Allstar.

What is an Allstar? Food bloggers, registered dietitians, and more home cooks (just like you!) make up our enthusiastic squad of 100+ brand ambassadors. This crew of food lovers has submitted thousands of recipes, photos, and reviews over the years, plus share their cooking expertise all over our website and social channels. In short, they make all of our cooking adventures more successful. Interested in becoming an Allrecipes Allstar? Learn more, and sign up here.

Q&A with Lisa Lynn

Allrecipes: Tell us about yourself!

Lisa Lynn Backus: I am a native of Long Beach, CA, and currently live in Las Vegas. I worked in the hospitality industry for 30 years, primarily in Hotel Catering Sales and Service. I've created wedding menus and packages for many hotels, one of which is Caesars Palace.

AR: What's a fun food fact about yourself?

LB: I believe everything pairs with champagne! And I use popcorn salt on everything.

AR: Why popcorn salt on everything?

LB: It is lighter in weight and has a finer grain. It is fun to use and eat; it sticks to food more easily and does not get all over your plate. I'm convinced it tastes better, too!

AR: What kitchen tools can you not live without?

LB: Scissors are my go-to tool for everything. They're not just in my kitchen, but also in my office and every other corner of my house. From opening bags of produce to cutting fresh flowers, bread, meat, or herbs, they're always there for me, even when it comes to opening the mail.

AR: What is always in your pantry?

LB: Wondra flour is always a staple in our pantry. I use it for all gravies and to thicken anything that needs a little tightening up, like soups and sauces. I couldn't find Wondra for three weeks during the pandemic, and it was about the only time I truly began to panic.

AR: Why Wondra over other flours?

LB: Since it's a finer flour, it tends not to clump and lump like regular flour. It is fun to use, too, as you just shake it shakey from the container. It comes directly into your pan with drippings, heavy cream, and seasonings. You can best control the thickness, too.

AR: What is your favorite thing to cook?

LB: Fun appetizers!  I love to take a base recipe and create something yummy like this.  I also love to make and eat garlic cheese bread. It's my kryptonite!

AR: Have a favorite appetizer?

LB: I love this spicy Greek feta dip. It is perfect for an intimate hors d'oeuvres party! I love when a recipe is simple to make with few ingredients but has gourmet flavors. It is a real winner.

AR: Fill in the blank: Being a home cook means ___.

LB: Cooking without formal chef training, cooking from family traditions, cooking to your tastes and creativity, and perfecting your specialties.

AR: So tell us, what is for dinner tonight?

LB: Pasta (still determining what kind) with Polish Sausage, zucchini, and yellow squash with a creamy garlic parmesan sauce. And you guessed it—garlic cheese bread.

Happy Hour Anyone?

Cooking has always been a fun and creative outlet for Lisa, not to mention a tasty hobby.  She loves getting together with family and friends. With a background in hospitality, it’s not surprising that Lisa Lynn loves to entertain. From creating a themed menu with a signature cocktail to having a couple of friends in the backyard, she is always ready to have a good time.

During April of 2020, she found herself like the rest of us, stuck in her home missing her creative outlet of getting together with friends and family. "I saw a friend post about 'quarantininis' and I thought to myself that sounds tasty! So, on May 1st, I embarked on 72-straight days of sunset backyard martini-making", says Lisa Lynn. She started celebrating each day by creating martinis, sharing them with her husband, and enjoying sunsets and views of the Las Vegas Valley. One of her first creations was the Sunshinetini, made of 50/50 vodka & gin, pineapple juice, a squeeze of fresh lime, a splash of champagne, and a raspberry and basil leaf on a martini pick. From there, martinis turned to daily punch bowls and personalized drinks named after family and friends. "It was a fun way to celebrate and cherish life's little moments," says Lisa Lynn.

Now that the pandemic is over, she is still finding ways to toast to the simple moments but now back celebrating with friends. "Yesterday, five friends came over for a backyard brunch, and I made Yukon gold potato, shallot bacon wraps, egg, cheese, and green chile bars, cantaloupe chunks with cinnamon sugar and basil, and lemon-infused water," Lisa Lynn says. She loves to take easy recipes and jazz them up to fit her friends' tastes. And even though we are now gathering again, she still enjoys an occasional solo celebratory martini every once in a while.

Learn more about Lisa Lynn and what she's cooking in her kitchen!

Read the original article on All Recipes.