I love to cook because I grew up cooking with my grandmother in Afton, Virginia. She called me Tadpole. She was my greatest cooking influence. After my family moved to Texas, my Dad and I cooked together. I learned a lot about seasonings from him. He was a cook in the army. I also love cooking with my brother. I learned a lot about marinating from him. When we cook together he talks like Julia Childs and I talk like Justin Wilson(I am female). It gets pretty crazy. I have developed the ability to taste something in a restaurant and recreate it at home. Thus, my family doesn't go out to eat a lot!
My favorite things to cook
There is nothing that I don't cook. I also love making all kinds of candy during the holiday seasons. My son's favorite thing is for me to bake him a cheesecake. My husband and my favorite dinner is marinated steak topped with sauteed onions and mushrooms, stuffed portabello mushrooms or stuffed baked potato and browned butter broccoli. A huge hit with the whole family and next door neighbors is chicken and dumplings with cornbread. Trying new recipes from allrecipes.com has been my hobby for quite a while.
My favorite family cooking traditions
My favorite holiday story is the first year I cooked Thanksgiving dinner for my Mom and Dad. Mom wanted to do something to help, I told her, "No, I just want you to sit back and relax". She insisted on doing 'something', so I told her she could make a pumpkin pie. Dad and Mom show up with her pumpkin pie, we ate dinner, everything from scratch, it was perfect down to the gravy. Time for desert, I cut and served the pie, noticing the color was strange. Mom looked at it and put her hand over her mouth and said, "OH! I forgot to put the pumpkin in my pumpkin pie!". Now every Thanksgiving she has to hear about her pumkinless pumpkin pie from somebody. By the way, she makes great pumpkin pies when she remembers the pumpkin!
My cooking triumphs
My husband and son LOVE Mexican food. I had never eaten Mexican food in Virginia and ate very little in Texas so I didn't know much about it. Over the 32 years I have been married to my husband I have perfected many of his Mexican favorites that he and our son love.
My cooking tragedies
I was making Clam Chowder and forgot to take my bacon out of the freezer, so I substitute imitation bacon pieces. I spent a loooong time fishing the pieces out and certainly was not the best I had ever made. Another time I got this 'brilliant' idea to grill a meatloaf on the gas grill----OOPS! The taste was good, what we could actually eat. The bottom of the meatloaf was hard as a rock. Thus, around here we don't call it 'meatloaf' we call it 'hamburger bones'.