I used to be known as someone who could not handle mac and cheese out of the box. Now I think I can make just about anything AND have it be great. The change came when I was pregnant and very, very hungry. Now it has been a few years and I think I do pretty fantastically. My toddler is willing to try anything I put in front of her, so that helps too.
My favorite things to cook
I'm lactose intolerant and won't eat pork, venison, lamb or anything that could be considered a pet within reason, so that narrows it down a little. I am pretty good at accomodating recipes to make them less dairy-potent. I get stuck in a lot of soup and stew phases (love my corn chowder recipe off here!), I make a lot of burgers-- beef and turkey. I love Italian and Asian dishes. However, I am not much of a dessert baker.
My favorite family cooking traditions
Spaghetti, chili and turkey chili were always my dad's forte, and I wanted to learn those recipes quickly (even though they're not so much recipes as they are "umm use about this much until it tastes good") I will be seriously depressed the day I have a Thanksgiving without my mom's stuffing.
My cooking triumphs
Cooking the "Gyroll" recipe that's on this site. As a beginner, I thought it seemed really complicated with the dough and all the dishes and chopping, but it turned out so great! Other highlights include successfully made gumbo, quiche and my own pizza crust.
My cooking tragedies
I don't even want to talk about the time I tried to scoop out zuchinnis and fill them again. Turned out... interesting. Let's just say that.