My favorite things to cook
Dishes with interesting tastes. I love "mixed foods," dishes that combine lots of flavors for something delicious. That's as simple as a great salad or casserole, or something more exotic. But it all has to be fairly easy and not be too time consuming. I have better things to do than stir something for an hour.
I love robust flavors with lots of spices. Exotic is good - but often my family doesn't share my desire. That's OK, I'm probably more into flavor than most. I avoid beef because chicken and fish are better. Two members of my family dislike anything but fried, mild fish/seafood. So my challenge is to either find fish dishes we all like and are healthy.
My favorite family cooking traditions
Pecan pie - my late father-in-law loved my burned attempt and ate the entire thing in one day!
Trifle - Several years ago I made one from this site, adjusting it using reader comments. My kids still talk about how much they love it. And it wasn't hard!
My cooking triumphs
Pan seared scallops. I clarified the butter, sprinkled lightly with kosher salt and cooked 2 min on 1 side, 90 sec. on the other side. The secret is to not touch the scallops for 2 minutes so the wonderful seared crust can form. These were just small grocery store scallops and they were better than any I've had in fine restaurants.
My cooking tragedies
Why remember the ugly.