I'm a lazy cook - never was interested when I was growing up. My first cookbook was one my mother (a home economics teacher!) gave me, called "The I Hate to Cook Cookbook". I would try out new and never-been-made-by-me-before recipes on friends I'd invite over for dinner. My specialty became homemade spaghetti sauce until I had kids and had to expand my repertoire.
Once I had a family and wanted to prepare nutritious, tasty but easy meals, I began to pore over recipes and try things out. My family likes my cooking but it's mostly homey stuff. I like gourmet-tasting recipes that are quick and easy too, although they are hard to find.
My favorite things to cook
Chinese style and stir fry dishes with lots of veggies, Southeast Asian, authentic Italian, interesting chicken and lamb dishes, Mediterranean food, interesting salads and vegetable dishes (eggplant, plantains, chickpeas, lentils etc.), Curries, pickles, chilli, quick breads and muffins.
My favorite family cooking traditions
My mother is the best baker, and growing up I loved her many different homemade breads (she stopped buying store bread), banana bread, her authentic pound cake, lemon loaf, creme caramel, hot sponge cake, her cookies etc. I also like her curries, which she rarely makes (well, we rarely see her as she lives far away).
My husband is a good cook and makes the most delicious roast beef and Yorkshire pudding every Christmas.
Once a year at Thanksgiving I cook my favourite Bourbon-glazed yams and a braised leek recipe you can serve warm or cold. plus creamy, rich, make-ahead mashed potatoes as seen on TV and really is amazing.
My cooking triumphs
Rotisserie BBQ'd cornish hens, chicken roasted with lemon, garlic and olive oil; Stout-braised Lamb, Moussaka, Green tomato relish and Green Tomato Chutney with homegrown tomatoes, Dill and Bread and Butter pickles using cucumbers from our garden; a fruit and nut chili that is a family favourite; Risotto using the recipe on the back of the Lundberg arborio rice package.
My cooking tragedies
Too sad to mention, mostly involving melted utensils and burned pans.