I love books, especially cookbooks, and feed my addiction by working in libraries. We rarely have the same meal twice...if it's a really good recipe, we might have again in about, oh, two months or so. I love to try new things, as much for the challenge of making them as for the new flavor experience. I especially like looking at old cookbooks and trying reproduce old-fashioned recipes in a modern, healthful way.
My favorite things to cook
We try to eat very healthfully, but gosh, do I like a good pie! And butter. And bacon. Sigh.
My husband's family is Italian, so we do some of that, and he is a chile-head, so we also eat a lot of spicy food--Thai, Mexican, etc. I'm trying to move us more toward a plant-based diet, so I like to prepare vegetarian meals (although it's hard to leave behind the butter/bacon).
My favorite family cooking traditions
*Buttered BLTs on Sunday mornings
*Communal cookie baking, especially snickerdoodles
*4th of July BBQ with brats and burgers
*First Snow Brisket
*Creamed Chipped Beef for brunch
*ham, black eyed peas and greens for New Year's
My cooking triumphs
I am proudest, I think, of my Panang Curry Tofu recipe. I tweaked, and nudged, and fiddled, until I had a recipe that my Thai-fanatic husband pronounced "better than the restaurant". And the lasagne that's better than his mom's. Using up all the leftover Thanksgiving turkey in four days without anyone saying, "Turkey again?"
My cooking tragedies
As a kid...the time I ran out of flour and tried to substitute powdered sugar in the cake recipe. It came out...um...cindery. I've acquired a bit of food chemistry knowledge since then.
As an adult...well, there was the time I lit a pot of deep-fry oil on fire. Then there was the tripe stew (shudder, shudder). And the scorched garlic spaghetti sauce. And the peanut butter cookie dough on the ceiling. And...