Paula Deen shed tears of joy Saturday, when she returned to form performing a cooking demonstration at the Metro Cooking & Entertaining show in Houston, Texas.
Deen, the 66-year-old restaurateur and cooking show host, made headlines last June when one of her former restaurant employees alleged that she made racial jokes at the establishment. In a testimony from a Deen's deposition on May 17, the Food Network host admitted to using the N-word in the past.
Deen was dropped by a number of sponsors including Wal-Mart, JCPenney, Walgreens, QVC and The Food Network. Deen made $18 million from her multiple business ventures in 2012. However, she was visibly emotional when returning to cook at the Metro Cooking & Entertaining show in Texas Saturday as she was welcomed by applause.
"These are tears of joy, y'all," she said, according to the Houston Chronicle. "I've said all along that the one place I'd want to make my first step back out is Texas. Y'all's hearts are as big as your state."
The publication reported that about 1,500 fans showed up in support of the singer while People.com stated that she was welcomed with "thunderous applause during a 10-minute ovation."
The cook appeared on the "Today" show earlier this summer and said she did not feel she should have been dropped by her varied business associates.
"Would I have fired me? No. Knowing me? No," she said.
The cook is more upset about the loss of her reputation than potential earnings, People magazine reported.
"She isn't upset about the loss of money," a source told the entertainment publication. "She's really upset about her reputation."
Toward the end of her first public cooking appearance since her scandal took place earlier this summer, Deen told the cameras filming the cooking event in Texas on Saturday, "I'm Back."