I learned to bake at the feet of my mother, helping out just as soon as I could hold a measuring cup. Mom and I loved baking cookies together, but I've found myself branching out and exploring cooking on my own as an adult. With my baking background, I used to be a stickler for following recipes exactly, but now that I'm cooking a lot more, I've finally learned to loosen up and improvise.
My favorite things to cook
Pancakes are quite possibly my favorite food because they're so versatile. You can fool around with the recipe, eat them warm or cold, with various toppings or plain. I also quick, one-dish meals that make weeknight suppers a pleasure rather than a chore.
My favorite family cooking traditions
The best part has definitely been the desserts, whether it's Christmas & Halloween cookies or special birthday sweets.
My cooking triumphs
Purple ribbon chocolate chip cookies my first year in 4-H! More recent "triumphs" include anything my boyfriend praises.
My cooking tragedies
After leaving college and moving home for a while, I tried to help out my parents by making dinner. I decided to try a recipe for Mediterranean Lentil soup from a new "healthy" cookbook. Unfortunately, I'd never cooked with lentil beans before. The soup was disgusting gray paste, and the crispy pitas I was browning in the over turned to flaming charcoal frisbees. I think I was crying by the end of it, and lentils have scared me ever since!