I am now retired and living in Philippines but I was raised in western Iowa and lived in Omaha 40 yrs. Because I was raised in mid west, I am basically meat and potatoes so going from meat as main item to rice at every meal has been biggest adjustment. I'm hoping to open small bakery specializing in cookies, pies, and American desserts, with the possibility of expanding into an American (mid western) style restaurant.
My favorite things to cook
Bar-b-qued country-style ribs, twice baked cheesy potatoes with parsley, and corn on the cob.
My favorite family cooking traditions
As my kids were growing up, they learned that they MUST taste everything we put on the table. If they truly didn't like it, we would give them an alternative they did like, but they knew that they stayed at dinner table till they had at least sampled the new item. Sometimes the new item became regular item and sometimes we never served it again, but at least they learned not to be afraid of trying something different.
My cooking triumphs
One summer my parents came to visit us for a weekend and of course grilling was on the Sunday dinner agenda. When I told my father we were having Pork Chops, he grimmaced a bit and asked for burger instead. You see, my mother always fried chops WELL DONE (closer to cremated),and Dad always just complimented her (to not hurt her feelings). When I served his med.-well (so they were still tender), his eyes lit up like Christmas decorations, and he fed the burger to the dog and asked for another chop!
My cooking tragedies
After my first divorce, there were too many to mention, especially if I invited a date to come to my place for dinner. The most notable was the the BRAISED LIVER AND ONIONS fiasco.