After a few months of striking out on her own, one daughter has moved back in with us. So I'm back to cooking a lot of vegetarian dishes. I actually enjoy this as she's very open to new flavours which means I get to experiment. I've been quite seriously ill for a while and it's just a delight to me to be back in the kitchen and doing what I love best. Feeding my family and friends.
I've been using Allrecipes for several years now and living in the UK this can sometimes be a bit of a challenge trying to figure out what some ingredients are. I enjoy reading reviews to discover what something is and if I can't get it here finding an acceptable substitute. Many of the recipes I've tried have become part of our regular menus.
My favorite things to cook
I love to bake it takes me right back to my aunt's kitchen and kneeling on a stool helping her as a child. Pasta dishes and soups are also favourites especially as I don't have a lot of time to cook during the week.
My favorite family cooking traditions
According to my girls Christmas Eve isn't Christmas Eve unless we make mince pies. The youngest one doesn't even like them but insists we make them. Homemade birthday cakes and choosing the menu on your birthday. I once didn't have time to make a cake for one of the girl's birthdays and bought a beautiful cake from the supermarket. It tasted fine to me but she said it just wasn't the same. Finally getting the recipe for my aunt's saffron buns and making them on rainy Sundays just as she used to.
My cooking triumphs
These days it's the little things that are the triumphs for me. My grown up niece and nephew fighting over who's going to take home the leftover birthday cheesecake, my picky daughter asking for seconds, my stepdad ringing and saying when we visit can you make your chicken curry, these are the things that let me know I've done well. Mainly because I cook to please my family and friends.
My cooking tragedies
As I get older I'm trying to be less of a perfectionist when it comes to my food. I'm not saying I don't have tragedies, I do but I'm trying to be more relaxed about them. So what if the cake sinks or the sauce isn't quite as thick as I'd like as long as it tastes good and everyone enjoys it. My main tragedies now come from the fact that I'm accident prone. The main one that comes to mind is cooking for our annual Christmas party a couple of years ago. I opened the oven door to check on something and the door literally fell off in my hand. Not my finest moment, but all was well in the end. We took what was cooking into my neighbour's to finish off and when the oven was cool my husband fixed the door. Actually that was a great party.