I come from a family where big meals are on a regular basis. My mom is a cook by occupation. I learned a great deal about cooking from my mom. As she likes to say, she always "cooks for an army." I started cooking when I was really young, but only doing the little things a kid can do. When I was about 9 or 10 I really took an interest in cooking and that's when my mom started to teach me more recipes and all of her special secrets. Now I cook for myself, mainly, but I also enjoy baking treats for my niece and nephew as well as cooking dinners for my roommate and her son. My roommate grew up with a mom who didn't enjoy cooking so I am now teaching her all about the joy of cooking.
My favorite things to cook
I enjoy cooking anything. I've taken canned soups and turned them into meals, gravies, and dressings. I always look for ways to take simple, ordinary meals and make them more exciting. My personal favorite dish to make is my hot carmel apple pie. I've been told it is the single best apple pie by everyone who has ever tasted it. My boyfriend who is a very picky eater asks me to make it all the time.
My favorite family cooking traditions
I'd have to say that every time my mom cooks a meal it is like a tradition. My two sisters and I are there and we have a big meal and talk about everything. Luckily, we don't live too far from eachother so we get to do this about once or twice a month. I ecspecially enjoy that my mom cooks our favorite meals on our birthdays. For my older sister, Ashley, she makes spaghetti. For me, the middle sister, she makes oven baked fried chicken with mashed potatoes and corn or corned beef brisket and cabage (I have to alternate because both are my favorite meals). And for my younger sister, Courtney, she makes ham and beans with cornbread. This would have to be my favorite tradition in our family.
My cooking triumphs
I had a phobia of cooking steak for the longest time (seriously). I wouldn't cook steak because it seemed like I would not be able to make it tender and perfect like my mom. But for my boyfriend's birthday a couple years ago he wanted filet mignon and I was determined to make it for him. I basically went out on a whim without having a steak rub recipe or even knowing how long to cook everything. I prepared the steaks and let them marinade in the fridge. Then I prepared a salad with fresh lettuce and some italian seasoning, olive oil, and a little butter. I put the salad in the fridge and took the steaks out. I put the steaks in a foil bag in a cold oven then turned the oven on to continue marinading them. After about 15 minutes I took the steaks from the oven and grilled them for more taste. I prepared my mom's famous (in my oppinion) tortellini. And after about 10 minutes dinner was served. My boyfriend was so pleased with everything he asks me to cook all the time now.
My cooking tragedies
I recently heard that adding sugar to pancake mix makes simple crepes. Well, I guess I should have asked how much sugar. I decided to try this out and added about a cup of sugar to my 2 cups of pancake mix. Well when I poured the mix onto the pan it seemed to thin out like I had figured it would, but when it came time to turn the pancake it kept falling apart like a cookie. I figured out I had used too much sugar when the entire pancake was in crumbs. I threw out the batter and decided to just have cereal. I'll try crepes someday when I have a real recipe.