I'm a divorced mom of 3 and a grandmother of 2, now an empty-nester so getting used to cooking for 1 or 2, but also really enjoying the freedom to experiment more and get back into cooking for pleasure. I work from home in my own business, SteelmanTranscriptionServices.com, and help others find work at home on WorkAtHomeResourceGuide.com. I am a DIY fanatic, although more observer than participant now, and I love reading, crafts of all kinds, and spending time with my family.
My favorite things to cook
I like to cook a lot of what I consider traditional foods, lasagna, meatloaf, pastas, as well a lot of different chicken recipes, and I also love to bake and I love trying new recipes for cookies and cakes or cupcakes.
My favorite family cooking traditions
My mother was raised on a farm and many of my family members were farmers, so I was taught with traditional, country-style cooking. I hope one day to make a gravy as good as my mothers, butterscotch pie as good my Aunt Esther's, and one day I hope to find a recipe for "pressed chicken" which my Aunt Josie made into sandwiches for us when I was a child and was a huge favorite of mine. I'm always asked to make a strawberry Jello salad that I've made for decades, a chip dip, a shrimp dip, my lasagna, and a few others.
My cooking triumphs
I love making Thanksgiving dinner, combining the family favorites with a few new dishes. I had one year in particular that I served a little more formal and had multiple courses instead of everything being put out at once, and that year in particular, everyone loved every dish. Although it was an enormous amount of work, I loved every minute of it. It was a huge success and also emphasized one of the reasons Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday, because it's just about being together with family, enjoying a wonderful meal together, and being thankful for all our blessings. It's not focused on any one individual or having to buy any gifts for anyone, and I love putting my heart into making the meal.
My other triumph is a fantastic rib roast recipe I have that I don't make often, but when I do, I get congratulations for days afterwards, it's like something from a five-star restaurant!
My cooking tragedies
Wow, too many to even mention! The first one that comes to mind happened shortly after I was married in 1980, and was a "faux beef wellington," basically meatloaf with a pastry over it and it just was awful. Of course, that was also when my husband shared with me that he hated meatloaf, but I like meatloaf and I wasn't impressed with the result either.
I've made my share of soup barely-edibles! For some reason, I feel driven to experiment, often with what I have in the fridge, and some were edible for one bowl, but the rest went down the garbage disposal!
It took me several times of bringing a lettuce salad to family gatherings and it would be really soggy, without the dressing but with a lot of extras mixed in, before I finally had the "duh" light come on and I started bringing it in separate small containers and mixing it just before serving to avoid the soggy yucky salad!
I'm sure more tragedies to come and more raves!