I first started cooking when I was in the Cub Scouts, many years ago. I wasn't particularly gifted or skilled until my interest was heightened by celebrity chefs like Jeff Smith and Emeril Legasse. I started actively reading and watching for new ideas and tips.
In the last fifteen years, I have begun to develop my own techniques and recipes. Unfortunately, most times I create a new recipe, I don't measure, and have some trouble recreating them, but I have been known to actually take some notes on occasion.
My favorite things to cook
While it may be too involved for day to day cooking, I love making home made pasta, especially for my lasagne. I roll the noodles with a rolling pin to the size and shape of the pan I use, so that the pasta layers are consistent all the way across.
I also love experimenting with new ingredients or ethnic foods that I have not tried before.
My favorite family cooking traditions
When I think about cooking tradition, the first thing that comes to mind is the way my family would gather and we would make cookies. We would make sugar cookies and decorate them with colored sugars, candies and frosting.