I am a student who has vowed to learn how to cook. If humans have to eat two or more times a day, we might as well be eating something real good! Right now I'm living in Germany for a year, and European measurements and baking pans are all so different! It's forced me to really get to know my ingredients so that the food turns out right. This way I also learn how to alter recipes or create my own. My host families have loved eating what I cook- all have gone fantastic (encore!) except a special tasty surprise I brought with me from the south: grits! Sigh. They've left my breakfast creamy cheese butter grits all for me to eat.
My favorite things to cook
--Ginger Garlic Pork with vegetables stir fry with fluffy sticky rice!
--Things that I can make the crust for always turn out fantastic: Quiches, apple pie, pumpkin pie (try making it with vanilla ice cream instead of evaporated milk!),and blueberry pie (the berries come from my backyard in South Carolina).
--Banana bread is a quick and easy one that I bake often.
--Quesadillas and burritos are a real treat when camping. Heavy (black beans, mmm!) or light (I tried it once with tiny cubed apples and ham pieces, delicious). --Bacon will always make things doubly tasty: quiches, quesadillas, pizzas.
My favorite family cooking traditions
My mom, grandma, sister and I all spend a whole day making polish Pierogies from scratch for Christmas. They are a real chore, and we make so many that we freeze a whole half of the lot for later! They can be filled with mashed potatoes, sourcrout, meat and potatoes- or berries as a dessert dumpling- and can also be eaten with sour cream.
My cooking triumphs
I made my first quiche here in Germany. I made the crust from scratch, and the ingredients were fresh bought from the Sunday market. It was the best darn quiche I have ever tasted!
My cooking tragedies
When I was 12, I *actually* asked how to boil water. When I was 17, I tried to recreate my mom's Lemon Curry Chicken Soup-- but of course all her ingredients were fresh and organic with real chicken pieces, and I had improvised it on a whim with canned soup, curry powder and lemon juice from a bottle. I tried to serve it as dinner to my grandma and boyfriend, but I was so embarrassed! It was the most disgusting thing I had ever tasted, and a total let down after eating the real version from my mom the night before. I promised to myself right then and there that I would learn how to cook!! Soon after, I lost my fear for cooking when I started to go camping with my boyfriend on the weekends, forced to learn how to put something quick and tasty together on top of a somewhat technically complicated camp stove.