valerie160 Profile - (13034090)

cook's profile


Home Town: Springfield, Virginia, USA
Living In: Ashburn, Virginia, USA
Member Since: Oct. 2008
Cooking Level: Expert
Cooking Interests: Baking, Grilling & BBQ, Stir Frying, Slow Cooking, Asian, Mexican, Italian, Southern, Middle Eastern, Mediterranean, Dessert, Kids, Quick & Easy, Gourmet
Hobbies: Scrapbooking, Gardening, Boating, Biking, Reading Books
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About this Cook
I am a busy stay-at-home mom to my three little lovebugs and wife to my hubby of 8 years. I am a jewelry designer and sometimes seamstress where I design custom handcrafted jewelry and unique pillow covers: I love cooking, reading, pilates, yoga, running, the summer-time and I just recently started gardening with some success.
My favorite things to cook
I love anything bbq and seafood related. I also love cooking recipes given to me by my mom because it reminds me of my childhood. I'm not such a good baker per say, but I enjoy making desserts - especially anything with chocolate! I like all types of food from all over the world, and I usually try to make a whole dinner (entree, side and maybe even dessert) if I can from a different country at least once a month.
My favorite family cooking traditions
Thanksgiving without a doubt is my favorite time of the year. Since I was 15 years old, my cousin and I have made Turkey Day Dinner. Its a time for our parents and grandparents to relax and has become a big "cousin" dinner thing which now includes my two sisters, and an additional 3 cousins plus our spouses (all in our mid 20's - early 30's now)! We usually have about 30 people at dinner and it's always chaotic and crazy but we always have tons of fun planning the menu and trying to out do our excellent meal from the prior year.
My cooking triumphs
I remember the first time I made dinner for my family - I must have been 14 or so. I made chicken dumplings and a chocolate cake with ganache icing. My mom still talks about that dinner. It really was fabulous. I lost the chicken dumpling recipe after that dinner and have never been able to duplicate it!
My cooking tragedies
Too many to list, but it just makes me better at it the next go round!
Recipe Reviews 149 reviews
White Fruit Cake
This will be my third Christmas baking this wonderful fruitcake. It is so moist and delicious! I replace the candied fruit with dried fruit because this is the way I prefer it. The first year I went out and bought the candied fruits and candied citron and orange peel in the plastic containers and was just disguised with the way it smelled. No way I wanted to ruin a perfectly good cake (and time, effort and money) with that junk, so I replaced with dried cherries, organic raisins, currants and dried pineapples and zested some orange and Lemon peel into the batter. Just a really really good cake - I look forward to Christmas season each year because of this fruitcake!

0 users found this review helpful
Reviewed On: Dec. 17, 2013
Mom's Buttermilk Pancakes
A little on the salty side, next time I'll cut back on the salt. Also I added 1 tsp vanilla extract. Everyone in the family, except the pickiest kid, gobbled these down.

2 users found this review helpful
Reviewed On: Aug. 21, 2013
World's Best Potato Salad
I really, really wanted to like this. I felt it had potential, but was just too sweet and almost ordinary tasting considering that you make the sauce from scratch. I even put less sugar in than called for. I ended up mixing in some chopped dill pickles and their juice hoping it would lessen the sweetness and it helped some. This was almost like the stuff you buy at the grocery store, which I was hoping to avoid. I may try to make this again using way, way, way less sugar or none at all, adding dill pickles and using a full 5 pounds of red potatoes and green onions in place of the raw.

1 user found this review helpful
Reviewed On: Aug. 20, 2013
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