I started cooking for my family when I was in elementary school, just to have some say in what we'd be eating since I hated most everything Mom fixed (health food!). Baking sweets was, and is, my favorite form of cooking and i pretty much only cook real food b/c my husband and I generally find ourselves hungry at dinner time and feel guilty if we eat cake in lieu of something healthy. We're both on Weight Watchers, so I try to cook on the light side--especially since we end up eating a pretty decadent dessert on a weekly basis.
My favorite things to cook
Anything with fat and sugar that requires time in the oven. I love difficult recipes and ones that take forever to make--like cinnamon rolls (all that rising time!!). I feel an affinity for Italian foods and seem to turn them out easily without a problem. I go by taste with them but with most other food I need a recipe.
My favorite family cooking traditions
I cook and my Mom closes her eyes and moans, then asks every little detail about what I used and the method. She always makes me feel accomplished. We've never cooked together b/c we don't work well together so this will have to do for my family cooking tradition.
My cooking triumphs
I finally was able to master the cinnamon roll! My first attempt was with a BHG recipe that was light on the filling and glaze and was overbaked and dry. My second, I used a wonderful recipe (as I would find out after my third attempt), but added an extra cup of flour on accident. They were edible but the dough was terribly dense. The third time--I got it right and they were to DIE for. I used the Soft, Moist and Gooey Cinnamon Buns recipe here on allrecipes--it's the bestest.
My cooking tragedies
LOL--just yesterday I was making butternut squash ravioli. I actually put them together the night before, even though they were only supposed to dry for 30 min. The edges were so dry they cracked all the way up to the filling, so a lot of it came out when I boiled it. I get really cranky when I'm hungry so I started having a temper tantrum and banging my spoon against the rim of the pot and screaming while my husband looked helplessly on. The ravioli started sticking to the paper towels that I was draining them on, which set me off again and then when they disentigrated in the sage butter sauce, I started slamming cabinet doors until the apple clock on the wall fell off. Since it didn't break, I picked it up and threw it on the floor and watched it break into three pieces. I later glued it back together and it's not much worse for wear. And the happy ending is that I really only lost a few ravioli and even though it wasn't pretty, it was DELICIOUS.