I worked in restaurants for several years but seem to learn just as much from my cooking pursuits at home. I am working on my baking, as that is not my forte, so I would like to improve my ability. I also worked at an organization that certifies organic foods/feed and learned a lot about commercial food production there. But I am still learning!
My favorite things to cook
I end up making a lot of vegetarian items, not because I'm a vegetarian, but because I love vegetables. I had a massive garden with my mother this past summer and was able to utilize tons of veggies and herbs throughout the summer and fall. It was great! I am a soup/salad/sandwich person and would love to have my own deli someday.
My favorite family cooking traditions
My mom still makes Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners, but I am the major cook of the family, so I help out a lot. Every couple of years my family has a major party for one reason or another, and I love planning the menu and cooking everything for a crowd.
My cooking triumphs
I make the best buffalo chili known to man (although it is a recipe from a book - shh! don't tell anyone!). I am also known for my black bean and corn salsa, although when I try to give out the recipe, people can't seem to duplicate it, because I always add a little of this and that.
My cooking tragedies
The worst thing I ever made was a 'shoofly pie' from a cookbook and brought it to family Easter. As we were eating dessert, I glanced at everyone's plates, and each person had a piece of my pie with one bite out of it still on their plate. When I finally tried it, I realized it was terrible! My family and I still laugh about that one. I also made a banana cream pie for my dad's birthday one year and forgot to prebake the crust! It still tasted good, but he had to ask in the middle of dessert... 'Did you bake this??' Ha ha!