I'm from coastal North Carolina originally, though I've travelled and moved about a great deal over the years. I keep going back home whenever possible -- several times a year, at least. "Home" is not only a place, of course, but includes the family, friends, and memories that go with it. Food is often a big part of those memories of home. We bond around a kitchen table, at a church supper, at a friend's barbecue. I like the simple, unfussy entertaining that "down home" gatherings imply.
My favorite things to cook
Southern cuisine, unsurprisingly, but with a more up-dated, and healthful twist. I especially love cooking the wonderful seafood that we're blessed with in coastal Carolina and adding to the meal the farm produce from the many local stands in the area. I also enjoy learning about different cultures through their cooking traditions and foods.
My favorite family cooking traditions
The time we all spend together at our NC home on the coast is our favorite family time. We get to relax from our usual hectic schedules and it's "all hands on deck" when it comes to cooking a seafood feast or a great barbecue. The shared tasks always include fun and laughter.
My cooking triumphs
My seafood pasta casserole has been an oft-requested recipe over the years. It's usually the #1 request for my husband's special birthday dinner menu. My sons would argue for my spaghetti with arrabiata sauce and sausage. All would agree that the Hatteras Clam Chowder I make whenever we go home is a winner, too. It's hard to mess up with such fresh ingredients.
My cooking tragedies
Over the years, there have been quite a few. One big lesson I learned was that not everything works in the broiler -- despite what the recipe might say. I may be one of the few people who have ignited a pan of gruyere potatoes!! Butter and broilers don't always mix!