I'm 30 years old, but have been in the kitchen since I could stand on a stepstool. I have two children who also love to cook, especially with anything that is messy or calls for sugar :)
My favorite things to cook
My favorite is actually themed cooking. I taught preschool while my little ones were of that age, and I learned to LOVE the looks on little faces when they see colorful and entertaining food to choose from. Not to mention the way grown people love my Halloween and other holiday antics. I probably love them the most because it's not an every day thing, and you can feel free to take hours to prep and it's not taxing when done occasionally. Besides, the presentation is the funnest part!
My favorite family cooking traditions
In terms of tradition, the cooking is pretty simple. Sundays are breakfast at grandma's at 9am. Pancakes, eggs, hashbrowns and sausage. It's grandma, mom, and kids all in the kitchen with a job to do. Children do the measuring (good math skill!) and the end-work, i.e. buttering, syruping and serving. Grandma and mom juggle the cooking, then the men/boys acutally have dishes duty after breakfast. Raise 'em right, I say.
My cooking triumphs
As I have lived in several different places mingling with several different ethnic traditions, I've learned to cook a lot of different foods. The most pain-staking of all though - but well worth it! - is the tamale, from scratch. After practice with some wonderful mexican women durning the holiday season where these are actually given as gifts, I think I've gotten it down to an art and I am always so proud after the day-long endeavor is done. It's almost sad that they are eaten and gone in less than 30 minutes... almost :)
My cooking tragedies
Tragedies always seem to be bred from an incorrect ingredient, in my kitchen. The baking powder instead of the baking soda, for instance. The paprika instead of the chili powder, those kinds of things. I can't think off the top of my head of any disasters, but I assure you I've had them. I get burned a lot, does that count?