As a child, our family owned a variety store, pre Wawa, 7-11 or Piggly Wiggly. In high school, I worked at a take-out seafood restaurant. I majored in Communications in college, worked radio and newspaper, but when my career in the newspaper ended, I went back to cooking. I worked as a cook at the Atlantic City International Airport in Pomona, N.J. and most recently worked for the summer at Bills Bar and Burgers at Harrah's in Atlantic City.
My favorite things to cook
Seafood, hamburgers, mac n cheese, Asian rice, pies, cookies and sweet breads.
My favorite family cooking traditions
Hot dogs and eggs, a favorite breakfast item from my dad. Add cheese and/or onions as desired. From my mom, tuna fish, mushroom soup, peas and pasta. I learned to love fish at the age of 5 when my dad caught a perch from a river, cleaned and fried it up over and open flame. Fresh and flaky. Delicious, I will never forget it.
My cooking triumphs
Coconut custard pie, Key Lime pie, Hunter's Stew in cooking school, sweet bread (hand mix only!).
My cooking tragedies
When I was working the fyer at an Atlantic City casino, I had my back to the cooridor of the kitchen. I smelled burnt plastic. A voice in my head said, "Turn around." I had put some boxes of chicken fingers under the heat lamp, telling myself I would get them as soon as I got behind to the fyer. The boxes were burning up. We put them under water. One box was trashed; one saved. I under cooked fries once in my current job.