My first adventures in food preparation began when I hit Junior High, and my mom told me that I was on my own for lunches. I wasn't really old enough to shop for myself, so I wound up fabricating some very strange meals.
My favorite things to cook
I like dishes that I can produce from what appears to be nothing at all- things like polenta and cheese soufflé. There's an almost magical quality to those times when somebody is complaining about how there's 'nothing to eat,' and then you suddenly open the oven, and presto! Dinner is served.
My favorite family cooking traditions
My grandma is Italian, so we have these family get-togethers that look like Olive Garden commercials, and eat lasagna along with our turkey at Thanksgiving.
My cooking triumphs
Feeding myself for an entire summer while residing in the middle of nowhere in a motor home, with nothing but a crockpot, a toaster oven and an electric kettle to cook with.
My cooking tragedies
One summer I worked as a park ranger, about twenty miles from the nearest town. During the first week I went to the market to buy some groceries, which included a package of chicken legs. Two days later I made chicken and dumplings, only to discover that the chicken had gone bad- probably due to the 45 minute drive home.