I come from a family of wonderful farm cooks, with the bulk of dinner, and the year's meals, right outside the kitchen door. I was raised in town, and spent as much time as possible on my Aunt and Uncles farm. Over the years my livelihood and eating habits moved away from this tradition, but now that I have a home with a nice sized yard, and I am eating almost exclusively vegetarian meals, I'm gladly returning to my roots!
My favorite things to cook
I love baking breads, making whole-grain pilafs, anything with beans, rice or lentils, root veggies and leafy greens. I also love farm food- mashed potatoes and gravy, pies and jams, fresh tomatoes, corn and green beans, pancakes from scratch, and for my occasional meat relapses, a big juicy cheeseburger with a side of slaw and an Arnie Palmer to wash it down!
My favorite family cooking traditions
Farm cooking, vegetarian, Middle Eastern and Asian. I am not so good at cooking Asian as eating it, though! I am really learning to love Indian foods as well, especially the richly flavored stews from the mid and northern parts of the country. I find the very spicy and exotic flavors of the more southern cultures a bit shocking at times, and so unfamiliar, but am learning to enjoy them from time to time.
My cooking triumphs
Ratatouille and Brioche, followed the recipes in "The Joy of Cooking' to the letter and they were glorious!
My cooking tragedies
There are many...the honey wheat door stops, the chalky-dry venison cutlets, the "Chicken Polyurethane" (that's a log story!). My first independent food disaster was lining a cake pan with plastic wrap rather than parchment paper to prevent sticking. I would have been the perfect encore to the Chicken Polyurethane, but alas, is was spirited off to the landfill before it had the chance!