I was born in Germany but have lived most of my life (since I was 4) in the USA. My Mom is a marvelous cook and so was Grandma so I guess that's where I developed my interest in cooking. I don't really do gourmet but I like to try new things and usually never follow a recipe 100%. I guess I just have to let those creative juices flow ;-)
My favorite things to cook
I love making hearty soups in winter including split pea, butternut squash and mega vegetable and multi bean soups. I love my slow cooker and experiment with those kinds of recipes quite a bit. I also love casseroles like Chicken and Stuffing or breakfast casseroles. Once in a while we will have something in a restaurant that I will be able to recreate at home--I usually come pretty close (kinda like horseshoes).
My favorite family cooking traditions
Mom is such an excellent cook and I get to help out in the kitchen (she let's me wash the dishes...just kidding). We love to make wonderful multi-course meals during the holidays. We start off with an Endive Salad with green onion vinaigrette then maybe a dumpling soup. The main course is one or two meats like a beef roast and maybe pork or chicken and 3 or 4 vegetable side dishes. Mom makes the best gravy! She also makes wonderful desserts like wine creme or marzipan tortes--amazing. In the summer we love to grill steaks with baked potato and cucumber salad--YUM.
My cooking triumphs
Having a sit down dinner for 10 people that went without a hitch. I made a standing rib roast with roasted garlic mashed potato and Aunt Enza's overstewed green beans and mushrooms sauteed with bacon and onion. Also made smoked country ribs (this was overkill and we had lots of leftovers) and a green tossed salad with homemade dressing. Strawberry, blueberry and blackberry mixture over vanilla or chocolate ice cream for dessert. I got raves.
My cooking tragedies
Tried to make turkey stuffing for thanksgiving to help mom out and muddled the spices so badly that the whole mess tasted bitter. We had to start over from scratch.