I'm an artist who's been married for 25 years with 2 children. I had the good fortune to have my Pennsylvania Dutch mother and grandfather live with us for many years which made cooking a real family affair. In his 90's, my poppy would peel potatos and clean string beans and such for me every day and mom did all the clean-up! I focused all my creative energies on the recipes and we had a wonderful arrangement with many happy years of eating like royalty! They have both passed on and my children are nearly grown, so it's become difficult to learn to cook for only a couple. Everyone's lives are so busy now that instead of 3 full-blown meals a day...I'm cooking dinner only a few times a week. I miss cooking for a crowd and beg my children to bring home friends to eat. My co-workers enjoy the leftover portions immensely tho, so I feed whomever will allow me! Lol.
My favorite things to cook
We're huge seafood fans, and love fresh fish and shellfish. I like a good comfort food, but my husband is a steak & potatos man. It's hard making things all 4 of us will eat, since the kids and I are international samplers and the hubby cries "I want roast beef!" I was raised eating everything fried in bacon fat and all else bathed in butter...so cooking healthfully for my family without losing the good down-home taste is a challenge. I do have a mantra tho....NOTHING tastes like butter....except BUTTER! We'll probably all expire from heart disease, but we'll be full......and smiling!
My favorite family cooking traditions
Grandma's pumpkin custard pie on Thanksgiving. Ham on Easter and New Years. Lobster and prime rib for Christmas. My grandmother's "Michigan rocks" and mom's "cherry cream rollups" are MUST-HAVE Christmas cookies, along with mom's favorite chocolate chip cookies and pizelles[at my son's insistence]. My husband added German sweet-n-sour green beans to the holiday dinner tradition and my dad's favorite stuffing recipe must be prepared for any turkey! Candied sweet potatos and asparagus always accompany the Thanksgiving bird as well as fresh hot rolls and an assorted pickle plate. We're rather anal about eating the same things for every holiday. In the summer I can't help but make fried [beefsteak] tomatoes....they remind me of mom! Baked macaroni and cheese can ONLY be made with longhorn mild cheddar and sharp white with grated onion in a white sauce! 7-minute frosting is the ONLY kind to put on an angelfood cake!
My cooking triumphs
I have a knack for throwing things together without measuring and everything comes out perfect. I think it's because I've been cooking for so long now that I can tell by eye how much I'm using. I also have a gift for selecting spices that are harmonious. My cookies are always fat and chewy....never flat! I also make Italian food like a native which nobody ever understands, but everyone goes nuts over[except my husband who will NOT eat red sauce] I consider cooking an art form and I create with wild abandon! I am especially fond of cold salads in the summer...and my seafood salad is quite sought after. Allrecipes.com has made an already excellent cook....even better.
My cooking tragedies
I have on occaision burnt a thing or two because my attention was diverted...but other than a lil too much curry in a chicken recipe when I was 13 yrs old....all's been good!