Saturday, October 19, 2013

Welcome...A Little Late, Better Late Than Never, Right?

Started my food blog 4 years ago, and  this morning I found an old post, actually it was meant to be my very first one, but I didn't actually press "Post" for some reason. I don't remember why I hesitated, but now that I am kicking off the blog again, maybe it is the perfect time to actually post it! Here it goes:


Good Morning all,

So, with our new house has come lots of entertaining. Since meeting my boyfriend in 2004, I have become quite the kitchen diva. I remember celebrating Steve's birthday in February 2005 with his family. This was the first birthday we celebrated in our relationship and I wanted it to be extra special. So, for his birthday I made this bundt cake with thick creamy cream cheese frosting. I had 4 different colors for the frosting: red,blue, green, and yellow.

 I decorated the bundt cake ala "Nothing Bundt Cakes" http://www.nothingbundtcakes.com/. The cake was so funky and fun, very celebratory and I remember how much fun and creativity it took to make it. From that moment on, I was hooked on baking and decorating cakes. I hope I can find a picture of this revalatory cake, but imagine an explosion of primary colored crayola crayons...and to top it all off I found these great squiggly candles in the exact same colors...

It's a great memory, one step in my food journey, but it was a a revelatory step. It was the first time that I had really baked outside of my childhood home, without "adult" supervision. And even though I used a boxed cake, I remember being at the store thinking, what can I do to make it special? I had the instinct to grab pineapple juice, and replace the water in the instructions, with pineapple juice. For the frosting, I thought about what would go with the pineapple. Instinctively, I knew to grab cream cheese. Later I would learn that the acid in the pineapple complements and cuts through the creamy fullness of the cream cheese. But I did not know that then. It was then that I learned that I could bake, and I liked to bake. As much as I liked to paint... As much as I liked listening to a great song .....and dancing around the house .... in my underwear ... Scratch that last part.  You get the picture. And even more than that, I enjoyed making people happy. And that cake made people happy. I was hooked.

Growing up, my mom was a chef in her own right. She always threw great parties, and always served good food. She strived to make the perfect crown roast, crab legs, perfectly grilled salmon. I know guests always looked forward to Thanksgiving, Christmas, birthday parties, etc at our house. It was normal to me, I didn't really know "fast-food". I remember the first time I went to Taco Bell. It was in high school with my childhood best friend, Heather. After school got out, we hit the drive through, she asked me what I wanted to order, and I was like, "I have no idea" - the menu felt a thousand feet tall as I tried to sort through it all. So I just said, "whatever you get." I found out that I had been missing out all those years, damn!

All joking aside, my mom was and still is a great cook, so I think that I wasn't scared of the kitchen, the pots, the pans, the heat. It was approachable, even comfortable. That might explain why I fearlessly jumped right in to that cake and then it was a pomegranate salad, and a gruyere Mac n cheese from scratch, and homemade ravioli...And it just kept rolling. While most of my college friends were perfecting top ramen, Nuclear Kraft Mac n Cheese and ordering the perfect combo of Subway toppings, I was and still am, trying to perfect a delicate broth.

I was always an adventurous eater, also a testament to how I was raised. I was the kid who wanted to try lobster for my tenth birthday. So, my parents took me to The Charthouse, and lobster it was. I saved that lobster shell in the freezer for a long, long time. I remember thinking, "hmmm, I like crab legs more." Yeah, totally normal 10 year old thoughts.  I'm okay with it, I always was a little different, now I am trying to embrace it.

So, looking back, I guess all roads lead somewhere, and that is my food journey in a nutshell.

Until next time...Happy Cooking!!

XoXo

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