Hello Readers!

So I know that everyone and their mother has a cooking blog these days, but I want to do mine a little differently. I want to be honest with my readers. I have learned to cook from four people/things. My mother, my aunt, cookbooks and The Food Network. These days you can type “Broccoli” into a search engine and a million different recipes will pop up. So here’s my thing. I’m 19 (almost 20) and I’m in college, and I have been cooking extensively for the past four years (at home, and now, frightfully, at school) and in addition to trying out the recipes of Rachael Ray, Paula Deen and Emeril Lagasse (to name a few) I also do try to make up my own little editions of dishes from what I know and have learned about cooking. Sometimes I will post a link to another chef’s work, and talk about how I expanded on it or worked on it. Other times I might comment on what I didn’t like about a recipe. It’s up in the air.
I also welcome any input from any readers! Comments are encouraged, and I would love to read and try out any recipes that come my way.
I will warn you of a couple of things about me. For a “chef” I am an extremely picky eater. I do not eat any pork products, or any nuts (except water chestnuts.. if you count those), and I don’t use peanut oil. I don’t cook particularly spicy foods, but many of my recpies have a lot of flavor without heat (but heat can be added and if you would like I can make recommendations). I don’t eat many kinds of fish, and I like to cater to vegetarians, and often either try my recipes with tofu or suggest that it might work. I cook mostly pan-asian cuisine (chinese, japanese, etc.) and Italian food, but also have some great Spanish/Mexican food recipes up my sleeve, and some american comfort classics. I’m no Julia Child, and I’m not starting this just because of the movie Julie & Julia (Which is really a great film and everyone should see it). If one day I can get my hands on Julia’s cookbook, then I will try some of those recipes here, but for now, I’m gonna work with what I’ve got.. which is a ton of ingredients and a mind full of ideas.

People you should know

I started cooking when I was a young girl. I took a cooking class through an after school program when I was in elementary school, and there I learned basics and kitchen safety from a wonderful woman named Colleen. She was a real life Martha Stewart in my eyes, but really she was just a stay at home mom with a passion to cook. I have her to thank for sparking my interest in the world of food.
I also have my aunt to thank. My aunt is an incredible woman, and boy do I thank her for forcing me to eat many different things. Not only is she an incredible chef, but she has some great tips around the kitchen. Recently she’s been telling me that she’d like to learn about how I cook, but really I always want to learn about what she’s doing. My aunt’s name is Tania, and I have some recent recipes that I must tell you all about from her!
I have the passion to cook from my maternal grandmother, Mae. I will mostly refer to her as Grandma, because I never called her “Mae.” My flurry for cooking actually started when Grandma became ill and my mother was spending a lot of time with her, and I decided to cook for the family. It was what I could do in my family’s time of need. My Grandma has passed on now, but I have a ton of recipes of hers passed down to me through my mother and other family members.

Last, but not least, I will write about cooking with my mother. My mom will also contribute to this blog on occasion, and she may write her own introduction as a post. She has some great wit in the kitchen, and along with my father they make a great team. My dad may even pitch in as well, so readers be warned. They eat differently than I do, in fact I don’t think there’s anything they won’t eat, so if you love your pork and your brussel sprouts, then read their posts.

I hope you enjoy my blog. I’m gonna post tonight after I cook dinner for my boyfriend (of 9 months… today).
Love and happy spatulas.
Alyssa
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