My brother and I grew up in the lowcountry and spent our summers knee deep in spartina salt marshes. We used simple flat head screwdrivers to pry oysters from the inlet and eat them on the spot. Our backs were burned from lying on our stomachs slowly reeling in a chicken neck on a length of twine and trying not to frighten the blue crab munching on the other end.
I've changed a lot over the years. At one point I was a big sportsman, and yes, I ate everything I bagged. Now, I'm just a middle-aged vegetarian hunting soybeans. Well, most of the time. It's hard to beat fresh shrimp, crab and oysters.
My favorite things to cook
I've cooked just about everything from wild game to vegetarian fare. There is no favorite item, but there is certainly a favorite place...outdoors. Nothing beats cooking for a group while standing outside with a libation and lively conversation. Frogmore stew, oysters, even portobello burgers. Gotta be outside.
My favorite family cooking traditions
I was fortunate to grow up in a household with a mother who was an exciting, adventurous, creative cook. While my friends' parents were serving meat, three and tea, we were dining on sweet and sour chicken, fondue, and other amazing delights. It is from her that I learned to mess up the kitchen.
My cooking triumphs
I can make some seriously awesome cornbread and have my cast iron skillet in my will.
My cooking tragedies
Almost burned our beach house down the first time I fried turkeys. My quick thinking brother extinguished the flames with buckets of sand. We still fry turkeys, only now we do it in the driveway rather than the carport.