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Old 04-17-2010, 01:16 PM   #1
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When did you discover your love for cooking

My dad was the team dentist for the New York Rangers and they used to frequent our home for dinner... I remember helping my Mom with a dinner and she said I should make dessert... Never having made dessert before, I decided on a chocolate souffle (yes Uncle Bob chocolate) it turned out wonderful and i've had the bug ever since...

How about everyone else?? I think this is a great way to get to know eachother..


A woman is like a tea bag, you never no how strong she is until you put her in hot water...
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Old 04-17-2010, 02:04 PM   #2
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We had a thread similar to this quite awhile back, but I think it is a fun one to redo, specially with all the new people like yourself! Thanks for starting it.

I actually started "cooking" at the age of 8. I think my Mom got tired of me sitting on the kitchen stool and asking tons of questions while she cooked and baked so she had me help. I began with Kraft Dinner, cheese pastry - my own invention to use up the left over pastry when Mom made pies. I would roll it out and put slices of cheese on it, wrap the pastry around the cheese, add some slits and it would go in the oven with the pies. It became a family tradition. I also started at that time making Christmas dessert - it started with Jello concoctions and by early my teens I would do very fancy cheesecakes, tortes, etc. with chocolate holly leaves, etc. I almost flunked the required grade 8 home-ec because I wanted to do things MY way, not the way of the teacher. I couldn't get away with that in culinary school though...which came much later in my life!

"Variety is not just the spice of life, it is the key to life" - Chef Michael Smith

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Old 04-17-2010, 03:41 PM   #3
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I used to watch my mom bake. Mostly to lick the bowl but a bunch of it still soaked in. My mom was not a cook and besides dinner (which was the same 10 entres rotated over and over) she did not prepare any other stuff. So we were on our own for breakfast, lunch and snacks. However, my cooking bug did not hatch until I met my wife. She lived a sheltered culinary life and there were many things that I knew she would like if they were cooked right. Porkchops! Can you imagine turning your nose up at porkchops!? "they are dry and leathery, I won't eat them" So I made her porkchops. She was astounded. After that success (and the reward afterward) everything just snowballed from there.
No matter how many Bibles he swears on, when a dog tells you he's a vegetarian, he's lying.
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Old 04-17-2010, 06:19 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by bigdaddy3k View Post
Porkchops! Can you imagine turning your nose up at porkchops!? "they are dry and leathery, I won't eat them" So I made her porkchops. She was astounded.
I complete relate to your wife. Growing up my Mother would have to force me to eat "just five bites" of this fried dried tasteless meat. This went on for years until the invention of Shake'n Bake!!!!! Then you couldn't get me to stop eating them. I don't touch the stuff anymore, but try to fit chops into my menu plans at least a couple times a month in different forms.
"Variety is not just the spice of life, it is the key to life" - Chef Michael Smith

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Old 04-17-2010, 06:35 PM   #5
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Dad was a chef for a company that operated cafeterias in factories and office buildings. He spent his days driving from one to another and doing whatever he did to ensure meals were properly prepared.

At night he would work on compiling a recipe book. After dinner he would tell me to get the typewriter (children ask your grandparents about typewriters). I'd roll in a sheet of paper that fit into his black three ring binder and he'd start dictating a recipe. For whatever reason, I remember the Mulligatawny soup the best. Probably because it sounded funny at the time.

I also watched Mom cook. If I wanted a dessert, she'd tell me to make a cake mix. That's how I started.

I didn't do any 'real' cooking until I was married. I cooked very little then because my EX didn't want me in the kitchen. After the divorce (for other, non-food related reasons) I had to cook if I wanted to eat. Thank goodness for TV cooking shows.
"If you want to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first create the universe." -Carl Sagan
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Old 04-17-2010, 10:02 PM   #6
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I started at about 13 so mom could come home from work and relax a bit. My father of course decided what we would eat and how it should be cooked. So I didn't spread my wings til I got married. I just had to out do my m-i-l and I finally did, I even learned to make ravioli and gravy to rival hers. Lucky I guess. And now I love cooking ,making salads, and Italian foods. I'm not much of a baker but I can do bread and foccacia,cookies and cupcakes.So a kid of 13 now can do a lot more and loves it.
HEAVEN is Cade, Ethan,Carson, and Olivia,Alyssa,Gianna
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Old 04-18-2010, 08:51 AM   #7
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novice cook

I'm a latecomer to cooking. A few years ago, I decided that I needed to lose weight. I bought some books on nutrition and made a major change in what I ate.

I used to eat those frozen meals found in the supermarket freezer for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. I stopped cold turkey and taught myself to cook using some very basic cookbooks. I also picked up cooking tips by watching the Food Network cooking shows.

Well, I discovered that I really enjoy cooking.

I slowly lost weight from 195 pounds down to my maintained weight of 165 pounds.

I wish that I had started cooking as soon as I retired nearly thirteen years ago. Oh well, who says that an old dog can't learn new tricks?
"When the kitchen smells spicy and wonderful, it can only mean one thing... it's not my kitchen."--- Maxine
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Old 04-18-2010, 10:22 AM   #8
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Just like LPBeier, I started young at about that same age, but it wasn't until during my first marriage that I began watching cooking shows and began transitioning from cooking being a duty to becoming a pleasure. I guess it had a lot to do with the expanding of my traditional, boring menu, to things we didn't grow up with and only heard about from others who traveled exotic lands.
"Food is our common ground, a universal experience." - James Beard
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Old 04-18-2010, 10:30 AM   #9
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I discovered my love for cooking when I discovered my love for eating...post baby food

. My kitchen is for dancing. Bring me sunshine in a cup~emily dickinson. Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
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Old 04-18-2010, 03:36 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by mollyanne View Post
I discovered my love for cooking when I discovered my love for eating...post baby food
Me too! I was the kid who was at the dinner table eating 2nd and third helpings of everything. I loved the meats, the veggies, the starchy things too. My mom was a great cook, except with steaks. My dad was also a very good cook. I wasn't allowed to touch the stove until about age 8 though. Then my dad let me cook pancakes with him. My mom and stepfather let me cook bacon and eggs. That was the start. When they weren't home one day, I got hungry for fish. I took a can of sardines and dredged them in flour. I fried pan fried them in oil, the way my dad fried brook trout. They were very tasty, but stunk up the house. My mom wasn't impressed. But there was no stopping me from there. I had watched my parents cooking enough that by the time I hit my early teens, I was cooking whatever I had a mid to cook, usually over a campfire at my and my friends tree fort. We cooked rabbit that we had harvested while hunting, fish that we caught, grouse, steaks, biscuits, soups, etc. I didn't really have a learning curve. It just kind of came to me.

Shortly after getting married, my wife got tired of me pestering her to try this and that, and to change this, or add that, and left the kitchen. Then I got serious and learned techniques, and how to combine flavors, and how to deconstruct foods that I enjoyed at other places, so that I could recreate them. I also learned to create my own recipes, and put together things in my head, mentally "tasting" things in my head before actually combining them to create a dish. At one point, I started sniffing each herb and spice I used and memorizing each according to their aromas. This allows me to pair herbs and spices with different foods without having to turn to recipes. I've been doing this for over thirty years now.

I don't have formal training, but have read so much, and learned even more from people I've talked to in person, or on DC. I've also learned what not to do by eating at other people's homes. I've had some truly terrible meals, but the maker of the meal never knew that. I've made a few stinkers myself, on the road to where I am now, and will probably make some more nasty things. I'm continuously experimenting with new techniques, and creating new recipes for myself and my family.

This tendancy has been adopted by my children, who are always calling me to tell me what new recipe or technique they've tried. They also love to make up their own recipes. We don't own many cookbooks, and have rarely used them. I'd rather write them and share what I've learned with others. I have seen things in cookbooks that are just plain wrong, based on old wive's tales, or on how mother used to do it. I prefer to use a scientific methodology in my cooking, that is come up with an ideas, form a hypothesis (educated guess or supposition) test, record the results. That's what I base my cooking on, and it works. I'm first a husband and father, then a child of my Heavenly Father, then a person who loves to learn how and why things work. I am an engineer by trade (B.S. in electrical engineering), and use the same problem solving skills with my cooking that I use on the job. And when my own abilities fail me, prayer gives me the answers I need.

That's me, good and bad. The most important quality I feel a person can possess is humility, the understanding that none of us are born with all of the answers, and have much to learn, know matter what we think we know. The 2nd most importantly quality for me is love of family and others. 3rd. - integrity. 4rth, a sincere desire to seek the best, most uplifting aspects of life, expecially for those we love, and then, to improve ourselves, be it in art, philosophy, engineering, activities, entertainment, etc. The criteria I use to define the "best", does it make me a better man, or uplift me or my family? Does my food bring satisfaction and pleasure to those who eat it? Is it nutritional sound? Does it create joy, or does it create stress? Ask those questions about what you make and you can't help but become brilliant with your cooking, always knowing that there is still more to learn, and room to grow.

Seeeeeya; Goodweed of the North

“No amount of success outside the home can compensate for failure within the home…"

Check out my blog for the friendliest cooking instruction on the net. Go ahead. You know you want to.- http://gwnorthsfamilycookin.wordpress.com/
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