I recently graduated after being in school for years and years. Now that I am married and a mother, without assignments to worry about, I am getting very interested in cooking and baking. I am taking more risks in the kitchen and they are paying off. My brother who is a chef has given me kudos, but more importantly my mother has--and she is very difficult to please!
My favorite things to cook
I don't think I have a favorite thing to cook, but some things are easier than others and that makes me more likely to cook them at times. I make a great 7-Up cake without looking at the recipe. My son (4) loves to make cookies and pretzels with me, so I've become an almost instant expert at making them.
My favorite family cooking traditions
Hmmm, I'm not sure we have traditions in terms of cooking. We have our favorite holiday meals, which are probably common to the American table: turkey and hams at winter holidays; cakes and pies at various family events. My aunt is the recognized cook/baker in the family but it seems everyone knows how to make something and has a dish they are known for.
My cooking triumphs
With my son as the catalyst, I decided to make roll-out cookies (gingerbread and sugar cookies). This past winter, I finally worked successfully with royal icing, piping bags, and decorating tips. I've become obsessed with watching videos on how to decorate sugar cookies using icing. It's fun and challenging and just amazing to see my son's face when he sees/tastes the results.
My cooking tragedies
When I was dating my now husband, I made him jerk chicken (with rice and broccoli and rolls). Everything looked delicious. He mentioned how he liked spicy, and so did I. So, I thought, more would probably be better. Well, by the time the jerk marinade and soaked in, then baked, it was like an 8-alarm fire in our mouths. I told him that it was so bad that I wasn't eating it. I'd just eat the sides. He insisted and I think he hurt himself. But the tragedy turned out okay, because we're married with our little boy. It's a cooking disaster that he likes to tell to friends and family. He says I've improved. ;-)