I am a fifth grade teacher, 32 years old, married, no children yet. My love of cooking comes from my mother, who is an exuberant and creative cook. She cooks with her hands, which is probably why I love the feel, smell, sight, and taste of the cooking process. I believe cooking is as much an art as it is a science. It's one of the things I look forward to doing each day. It's a creative process that both relaxes and energizes me. I am also passionate about using foods that are as fresh and close to the earth as possible.
My favorite things to cook
Almost anything! I love to test new recipes, and my wonderful husband is very receptive to my "experiments." I love meals that are full of fresh, whole ingredients, and we are trying to eat more meatless meals during the week.
My favorite family cooking traditions
We are a Norwegian family on my side, so I love lefse and krumkake. My paternal grandmother was an incredible cook who wrote notes in her recipes like, "Don't be afraid to stir vigorously," and drew detailed diagrams for how to shape cookies. My mother would cook fun meals like "whimsy bread," which was a calzone that the kids would shape into whatever suited their fancy, filling with their favorite pizza toppings. From these women I learned to relax around food, smell and taste it as it is cooking, and be brave enough to trust my own instincts.
My cooking triumphs
I have been told that my hummus and beef stew are great. I also love marinating meat for the grill and making Indian curry with cumin-flavored basmati rice. I have recently learned to add fresh herbs like cilantro and basil to my green salads and sandwiches, which takes them to a whole new level!
My cooking tragedies
One time when I was in 5th or 6th grade I was making chocolate cake with a friend. We forgot to add the egg till after the cake was put in the oven! We hurriedly pulled out the pan, cracked an egg into it and stirred it into the batter as best we could. The result was a tough cake with bits of weird scrambled egg in it. Yuck!