For Chef Joy Knox baking and cooking have been a life-long love. The youngest of five children, Joy was willingly tied to her mother’s apron strings in the warmest spot in the house ­— the kitchen.

“Food takes me back to those happy times growing up, to our family gatherings. And I believe this is true also for the patients and residents we cook for at The Arbors, Valencia,” Joy explains.

Joy has been the chef at The Arbors for nearly two years, planning and overseeing menus and dietary needs for all of The Arbors dining rooms.

“One of our biggest challenges,” Joy said, “has been getting our food orders filled and delivered, due to the current shortages. We utilize a number of different subcontractors to make sure that we maintain a steady supply of fresh, quality meats, vegetables and fruits as well as basic food products.”

Joy joined the St. Barnabas culinary staff with 26 year’s experience. After attending the International Culinary Academy in downtown Pittsburgh, she was hired by Carmody’s Restaurant, formerly in Wexford, PA. Joy was with Carmody’s for 22 years working her way up to sous chef. She then served as Executive Chef for the Carmody Grille on Neville Island for four years before coming to St. Barnabas in December 2019.

Joy’s favorite dish is her Mom’s Baked Cream Cheese Mashed Potatoes, which she is happy to share with Faith & Work readers.

“I love making people happy with good food, so please enjoy Mom’s potatoes,” Joy says, “But here’s a special inside tip. These potatoes get a crust around the outside edge, and it’s delicious. All five of us kids would fight to get the crust. Make sure you save a piece for yourself!”

Mom’s Baked Cream Cheese Mashed Potatoes

  • 2 pds. Baking Potatoes peeled and quartered
  • 2 T Butter
  • 1 cup Milk
  • 2 blocks Cream Cheese (8 oz)
  • 2 Eggs

Bring pot of salted water to boil. Add potatoes and cook until tender (l15 min.) In sauce pan heat butter and milk. Drain potatoes and return to pot. Mash potatoes with masher or electric mixer. Add cream cheese, butter, milk, salt and pepper and mix. Add eggs and mix well.  Put potatoes in greased baking dish.  Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes.

(Can be prepped the day before. Do everything except bake them. It will take a little longer in the oven the next day.)

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