I am a wife and a mother of two boys, one has flown the coop and one is on the way. My husband and I are both self-employed and most of the time I either don't want to spend hours in the kitchen or can't. When I do cook, I love to start early in the day and make something hot and delicious for lunch, then prepare a great dessert and finish the day of cooking with a great barbeque. We use our grill year-round here in sunny California. When it does rain I pull it under the patio. I love my beautiful horses and my cow dogs. And I love living in California's Gold Country and a small community where everyone helps you keep track of your kids and the air is fresh and clean.
My favorite things to cook
I love Italian and I would cook pasta everyday of the week. However, since it goes straight to my thighs and my husband's belly we don't cook with pasta. I've borrowed Suzanne Sommer's idea of using Zucchinni and Spagetti Squash as noodles and 80% of the time it works great. I do low fat but not fake, ie: no margarine or fake cheese! Yuck! Usually our meals are simple with grilled meat, poulty or fish and a vegetable dish that may resemble a pasta dish. Lots of parmesan cheese and red sauce!
My favorite family cooking traditions
My Grandma Maggie cooked the easy way. She started with a box or can of something and made it into a great dish. That's more me. Gourmet I'm not but I never get complaints! My mom is a great gourmet cook and has mastered Japanese and Chinese. That didn't rub off. She did teach me however, that a large part of the meal is the ambiance. I love to set my table for friends and enjoy great food, great conversation and great friends with the table set to the hilt! I have several sets of china for nearly every season: flowery for spring, sunny for summer, warm for fall and celebratory for Christmas!
My cooking triumphs
I don't bake much and I've made a few cheesecakes becasue it's my husband's favorite dessert.
My cooking tragedies
Anything that got left on the stove too long becasue I got busy with above: husband, kids, horses, dogs or friends and burned to a crisp. My husband on the other hand is the inventor of the great chicken massacre. He is not allowed to BBQ because he thinks two bags of briqettes is better than one bag. He grilled chicken to beyond black once when we first started dating and that was the last time he was allowed near the BBQ.