Retired nurseryman from a large family. We all live within 45 minutes of each other and get together often, usually around food. Everybody cooks and we enjoy working together in the kitchen or around the grill. We vacation together twice a year in the outer banks of NC, in a house big enough for three generations, most of whom have some input into each meal we share. It's always a kind of managed chaos, but every meal is a celebration!
My favorite things to cook
I love comfort foods and I also love to cook simple meals with elegant sauces. I love to grill, but I usually defer to my younger brother, who is a charcoal grill wizard. I grow my own vegetables, so I really enjoy coming up with dishes that feature them. I make a mean ratatouille that's a staple at every Thanksgiving meal. My pickles are a family favorite, too.
My favorite family cooking traditions
Beach week brings us all together, and each family unit used to be responsible for one evening meal every week. The competition was always stiff, as everybody trotted out their latest gastronomical discoveries. We always helped the more "culinary-challenged" of our siblings with meals, so everyone could shine. That has since evolved into everybody adding something to every meal. The kitchen of the house we choose must allow for six or more cooks working in unison. As I stated above, it's a managed chaos, but never has the sauce been spoiled by too many cooks. The love we have for food- and each other- is always the perfect seasoning!
My cooking triumphs
Never had a hollandaise sauce to break. A minor triumph, perhaps, but I'll take it.
My cooking tragedies
The first half pig I grilled ended with charred ribs and tenderloin and raw hams. Learning to control the fire is EVERYTHING.