I grew up in a restaurant family, my dad was a chef and we owned both a breakfast/lunch place and a bakery for many years. I've always loved to eat my dad's gourmet cooking, but it hasn't been until recently that I've become passionate about cooking myself.
My favorite things to cook
I love, love, love to bake. Whenever I worked for my dad, it would be in our bakery decorating cakes and cookies, making fruit tarts, mixing up batter, etc. Now, though I don't have a sweet tooth myself, I love to make cookies an brownies, cakes, scones, the works!
My favorite family cooking traditions
My mom's yearly Christmas cookie bake in which she'd invite all her girlfriends, as well as mine and my sister's, over to make hundreds of chocolate chip, Mexican wedding, gingerbread, peanut butter, and, the best, ornately decorated sugar cookies. It was a blast and my mom's sugar cookies were like tiny works of art, beautiful.
My cooking triumphs
About two months after I'd moved to New York when I was 18, I threw a big dinner party for all my friends. We were all just starting school and a little bit homesick, so I made a feast of comfort food the way my Grandma would. Fried chicken, baked beans, corn on the cob, biscuits, mashed potatoes and gravy, the works! It was dinner for about 20, and everyone still talks about it!
My cooking tragedies
Having someone find a big clump of cat hair in their slice of birthday cake, so embarrassing! And also the first time I tried to cook lamb. It was so fatty and grisly by the end that we couldn't eat it at all. It was such a waste of time and money, and my boyfriend and I ended up ordering pizza.