Here I am sitting in a chair given by Queen Victoria in 1888. The first thing I was ever allowed to make on my own was concrete. Of course I slammed those grocery store cinnamon and orange muffins on the counter and put them on a cookie sheet.
But I got to make concrete at age eight. I mixed the right amount of Portland cement to sand to water in a wheelbarrow and wheeled it in to make our back door steps. Bricks. But I kept making the recipe, and making it, and making it because the guys said 3X4X3. Dad thought that meant three feet deep, not inches. If a tornado comes the house may go, but that doorstep will last forever. And I was the chef. No, I didn’t add salt.
I’m not a chef. I’m a cook. A good cook. School just made me better and fulfilled a wish I had since I was a kid getting the Betty Crocker Boys and Girls Cookbook out of the local library and keeping it until it amassed $.31 of late fees. Mom bought it for my birthday three weeks later.
I went to cooking school in NYC and Italy. Before that I was a girl with a growing passion for cooking and had three role models.
This blog is dedicated to: my mother for teaching herself to go from the ’50’s ideal of cans of cream of mushroom soup to souffles from Gourmet Magazine (rest in peace, Mom); my Aunt Lorna, an English teacher with a more southern influence who made me taste everything before I could ask the ingredients; and Joan C, a family friend who, with Aunt Lorna, created a successful summer catering business.
Without them I would not have pursued this passion. Without my husband I would not have this opportunity to share stories and recipes with you. He has a hidden agenda – dinner on the table!
Let’s get started! Dee
ps the photo is me in the Lord Provost’s Chair at Glasgow City Hall. Our flat was across the street.