Local youth publishes her own cookbook - scott-livengood

Local youth publishes her own cookbook

Article Published by:

One thing readers of Lauren Sephton’s “Farmers Market to Family Gatherings” notice right off the bat is that none of the recipes use butter. Instead, they use extra-virgin olive oil.

That’s because Sephton is the daughter of Cindy and Tom Sephton, a Winston-Salem couple who import high-end Italian olive oil under the Batistini label.

The Sephtons began their import business — which also includes balsamic vinegar and other products — in 2014.

At the time, Lauren Sephton, now 20, was getting into cooking and spending a lot of time in the kitchen.

“Once they started their business, they never had any butter in the house, but we had all this olive oil — so I had to learn to cook with it,” Sephton said the other week. “As I found a good recipe, I would write it down.”

Eventually, her mother suggested she compile all of her recipes into a cookbook.

Sephton released “Farmers Market to Family Gatherings” in November, and she is selling it on her website,, as both an e-book and hard-copy book.

The 50 or so recipes reflect Sephton’s love of traditional foods she learned from her grandmother as well as healthy, contemporary dishes. “I’m mostly self-taught through a lot of trial and error. But I got a lot of inspiration from my grandmother and my mom,” Sephton said. “The book has this balance between my grandmother and her traditional things and mom’s funky side — she likes to try new things.”

The book has three main chapters: Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner and Dessert. The Breakfast chapter has such familiar foods as peachy nutmeg muffins and chocolate-chip pancakes, but also such contemporary dishes as vanilla chia pudding with homemade raw granola and breakfast tacos.

Some traditional recipes in the Lunch & Dinner chapter include spaghetti and meatballs and homemade pizza. More contemporary recipes include wild rice and lemon squash soup, butternut-squash burrito with avocado aioli, and portobello mushroom lasagna with roasted eggplant.

Sometimes Sephton puts a modern twist on a familiar favorite. Her take on a chicken biscuit features fried chicken breast medallion with an almond crust, served on an olive-oil biscuit. She makes an eggs Benedict with heirloom tomatoes and arugula tossed in honey-ginger vinaigrette instead of English muffins and Canadian bacon, and pesto in place of Hollandaise sauce.

The desserts in particular have a twist in that they also use olive oil for the fat, generally replacing more traditional butter. They include orange blackberry cinnamon rolls, toasted coconut blondies, raspberry yogurt cheesecake, mini “hint of sweet” chocolate cakes and oatmeal chocolate chunk cookies.

Sephton, who’s registered in Liberty University’s online program, said she didn’t write the book to help her parents’ business. Instead, she has ideas of starting her own.

She founded A Bright Moment Co. to sell more than cookbooks. “I hope to incorporate more food-related products on the website. I’m hoping to come out with a homemade muesli,” she said.

She said she chose her company name to convey a positive message. “Every day can be used to make a positive impact in someone else’s life,” she said. “That’s the main purpose of A Bright Moment Co. and that’s the main purpose of this book as well.”

About Scott Livengood

Scott Livengood is the owner and CEO of Dewey’s Bakery, Inc., a commercial wholesale bakery with a respected national brand of ultra premium cookies and crackers.

Previously, Scott worked at Krispy Kreme Doughnuts for 27 years, starting as a trainee in 1977. He was appointed President of the company in 1992, then CEO and Chairman of the Board.

Scott has served on numerous boards including the Carter Center, the Calloway School of Business and the Babcock School of Management, Habitat for Humanity of Forsyth County, and the Winston-Salem Chamber of Commerce.

He started a new business, StoryWork International, in 2016 with Richard Stone. The signature achievement to date is LivingStories, a story-based program for improved patient experiences and outcomes in partnership with Novant Health.