FreeAtLast Profile - (18576881)

cook's profile


Home Town:
Living In:
Member Since: Mar. 2006
Cooking Level: Intermediate
Cooking Interests: Baking, Grilling & BBQ, Stir Frying, Asian, Mexican, Italian, Southern, Mediterranean, Dessert, Gourmet
Hobbies: Gardening, Camping, Reading Books, Music, Painting/Drawing
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About this Cook
I am the mother of wonderful 24 year old son and will soon have a lovely daughter (in-law :) So, we are planning a wedding, while they are busy with work and school. Thankfully, they are home again after a year working in her home state. My son is attending graduate school, teaching, and continuing his work in filmmaking. She attended culinary school and is working in event planning at an exclusive resort in our area. I stay busy helping them and am still doing some baking and meal prep for my best clients. I have been ill, so have had to cut back on my baking and other cooking.
My favorite things to cook
Currently I am baking and selling cakes and desserts. I pretty much enjoy cooking everything..cakes, desserts, down home southern favorites, Asian, Italian, and specialty gourmet dishes. I also do full meal preps for pick up and delivery, as well as preparing meals in the clients home. *Update: I am not doing very much currently due to illness. I still do some things for my best clients. Hopefully, I will be able to continue my work in the near future.
My favorite family cooking traditions
Entertaining, cook-outs, and dinner mother did a lot of this and I totally enjoy the planning, preparation, and observing the joy of friends and family.
My cooking triumphs
A cook-out for 100+ people with me doing 98% of the food preparation!!! I had a few friends bring desserts, but I prepared a buffet table of 20+- dishes, solo..I sure was tired at the end of that week!!!
My cooking tragedies
Burnt bread..I am like Rachel Ray, I always forget about it being in the oven!
Recipe Reviews 3 reviews
Roasted Okra
This was delicious!!! I grow vegetables on the deck outside of my apartment and I have one okra plant (these plants grow Tall!, mine is over my head, I'm 5'4", soon I will need a ladder to pick it:). Since there is only one of me, the one plant provides enough okra so that I need to prepare something every 4 days or so. I always loved it stewed with tomatoes and onions, but I am afraid your recipe has won me over. Love the intense flavor the roasting gives it and you are right, it is less "wet":)I did use my combo of tomatoes and onions, but roasted them along with the okra...awesome! I sliced my okra, made thick slices of onion, and halved a small tomato, sprinkled with choppped fresh basil (from my deck garden also), drizzled all with olive oil, seasoned them with Old Bay and just a touch of salt and pepper. I put a shaving of fresh parmesan on my tomato and baked it as directed. Absolutely awesome!!!

399 users found this review helpful
Reviewed On: Aug. 16, 2009
Zesty Zucchini and Squash
I have been making this for years and love it! There are a variety of ways to use it and to mix it up a bit as well. I use fresh tomatoes when in season and add canned chopped green chilies (you may need to drain some of the tomato juices if it is going to be too thin). You have to be careful with green chilies if you are heat sensitive, I am not. But if you are, start with approximately 1 heaping T. chilies to 3 large fresh tomatoes (or 1 16 oz can). I also use fresh basil and thyme (2 large basil leaves and large sprig of thyme, leave it whole, cook, then remove prior to eating or chop and leave in the dish). When using the herbs, it is okay to omit the chilies, but I use the herbs with the chilies and love this flavor combination. This also makes a good pasta sauce (leave all your tomato juices in), top it with fresh parmesan it! Sometimes I omit the green chilies and add black olives when using it as a pasta sauce, delicious too. Use your imagination, this dish can be varied to suit your taste. To novice cooks: I grow my own herbs, so I am always experimenting. I live in an apartment and grow them and veggies on my deck in the summer. In the winter I have a small herb garden in front of my sliding door. Herbs are easy, easy to grow! You can have a small herb garden in any window in your home year round. It is far less expensive than buying them in the grocery store and SO much better than the dried herbs!

66 users found this review helpful
Reviewed On: Aug. 13, 2009
Artichoke Bruschetta
I LOVE artichokes, so knew I would like this recipe. I did as other reviewers and added some chopped tomatoes, as well as used less mayo (probably 2 T). I agree that the crostini needs to be lightly toasted first to prevent sogginess. I added a step to this and melted approximately 1 T butter with 1 clove of garlic and very lightly brushed each crostini prior to the first toasting. Don't leave it in the oven long, just enough to begin to get a "crustiness" to the top of the crostini. Remove and add the artichoke mixture and bake as directed. The garlic butter gives it just a hint of garlic with the tiniest bit of buttery richness. YUM!

19 users found this review helpful
Reviewed On: Apr. 4, 2009

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