People ask me where I learned how to cook and how I got as into food as I am. Simple: I grew up in a food-loving home! What my question for everyone else out there is…where did people get the idea that a kitchen is supposed to be a fancy, polished environment with no more personality than a cold steel surface? The kitchen I grew up in was full of personality and sometimes chaos. That’s exactly how I like it and I wouldn’t have it any other way.
A kitchen is the heart of the home. It’s where people laugh together, cook together, eat together, argue, make-up, cry over pots of ice cream together, cook comfort meals for the sick, make birthday cakes, you name it. Some of the best meals I have ever eaten were cooked by my loved ones who were never fancy chefs in a 5 star restaurant. Michelin star? What’s that? Haha. No one in my family graduated from French culinary arts schools or cooked under the guidance of celebrated chefs. The people who introduced me to cooking were my grandmothers (both maternal and paternal), my mom, and my dad. People who simply wanted to make food that delights the taste buds and bellies of the family and friends surrounding the dining table.
I am so happy that my darling fiancé shares the same passion for cooking and for food that I do. I love to bond with him in the kitchen. Concocting special meals for each other, cheering each other up with favorite recipes after a long day, and sometimes using each other as test subjects for some new creations. Not to mention exploring different restaurants and hole-in-the-wall places that somehow have amazing food. And, of course, munching on authentic food where ever we travel too.
That’s how we roll in this family! We have a meal for every occasion and situation. We laugh and cook our way through whatever lemons life serves us – squeeze those lemons dry and toss ’em in an iced tea!
Don’t get me wrong – sometimes a girl needs an elegant dinner at a nice restaurant. Or some take-out food that cures a craving or makes life a little easier on an exhausting day. That said, the joy of cooking for my loved ones is always present.
So let’s forget those pre-made, plastic meals and get back to the real cookin’! Be fearless (but careful). Get our hands messy, our aprons dirty, and our face full of smiles. Cooking has to come from the soul, otherwise you’re just tossing things in a bowl and calling it chow. A real meal made with fervor & love – regardless of complexity – is a meal that will satisfy the soul and the belly alike. Yes, cheesy (haha), but nonetheless true!
Happy eating and cooking!