I started cooking in the 70's when my parents, who ran a resort on Lake Chelan, were simply too busy to cook family dinners for my little sister and me. I started with simple things, then my aunt Linda bought me the Joy of Cooking. Next thing you know, I was whipping up Coquilles St. Jacques at the age of 12! I also made grasshopper pie by filching my parents' Creme de Menthe. My sister, a picky eater, started eating again and my family actually sat down to dinner together. I felt like a star! And I've loved cooking for people ever since.
My favorite things to cook
I love to cook everything from down home comfort food to exotic middle eastern to european. But mostly I like to cook with local ingredients. I live in the Northwest, so seafood takes a central role. I love to shop at farmer's markets and see what unfolds in the kitchen after.
My favorite family cooking traditions
We are a strong Irish Catholic family and we all cook. Mostly the family gets together for holidays and everyone takes a dish, no one is left with the entire responsibility. I am in my 40's and single, with no kids. My sister is married with no kids. Dad lives nearby, and we frequently get together for family dinner on Sundays, which usually is a roast, potato something or other, and a vegetable thingy. And of course chocolate for desert! I'm grateful we have such wonderful times shared over food.
My cooking triumphs
Once I was the backup for a private party for 60 people. The chef did not show, but I rose to the occasion! I hijacked a couple of the guests (it was a fundraiser) and since everything was staged, away we went. I also was an editor/production specialist on a cookbook, called "Sand in Your Shoes" by Rafael Antonio Nazario. You can get it on Amazon! It features the cuisine from venerable Puerto Vallarta restaurant, Daquiri Dicks.
My cooking tragedies
I once dropped the turkey on the floor. (Who hasn't??) I also followed a recipe that had a typo in it and used 3 Tbls of cayenne when clearly the recipe called for 1-2 tsps. Oops! We ended up drinking a lot of beer that night so it all worked out okay.