For as long as I can remember, my grandmother’s food has always been the best that I ever had.
It all started when I was around 5 years old and she made a seafood soup that she called Nina’s Sopa De Mariscos. And then her sweet breads and rolls and cakes. She made it look effortless and fast.
I never heard her complain about chopping onions or garlic. She never cut her finger when cutting up a whole chicken. And she swung that meat cleaver with confidence.
She raised ten kids and she always had plenty of food but nothing was wasted. She must have had a menu in her head because it seemed like every meal was a perfect balance.
Everyone wanted to watch her in the kitchen. We would sit in the doorway and watch as she moved around the tiny kitchen cockpit with ease. Sometimes wiping her brow with her apron but never a complaint or groan. Even after she had hip surgery, she still looked like a ballerina in the kitchen.
On the other hand, my own mother looked miserable in the kitchen.
She dreaded shopping for groceries. She hated putting them away, she despised Saturday’s because it meant that everyone was home for breakfast lunch and dinner.
It wasn’t a smooth dance with her. It was more of a jerky first rehearsal. At every meal. It was awkward and no one wanted to watch let alone join in.
The faster it was over, the better.
Well this blog is about the joy of cooking and eating delicious food. Prepared with joy and grace and gratitude. Prepared for myself, my family and friends with love and enjoyment of the meal. From an igniting idea to proud preparation to finishing touches on the dessert.
This site is a tribute to my grandmother and I hope that the recipes and stories that I share here will help you put the joy back into your cooking.
Now don’t get me wrong.
For many years I have been a grouch in the kitchen just like my mother. But as I was planning a menu for my daughter’s quinceanera with the caterer a few month ago, I thought, “How could she possibly enjoy preparing all of this food?”
By the way, not only did we find a delightful caterer who taught me a few tricks, we also found a great limo service for the quinceanera that we tell everyone about.
And when I asked her about it, she described growing up with a grandmother a lot like mine…
We laughed about how they made so much food out of so little. And how they took their time when teaching us to cook. And how our mothers would jump at the chance to drop us off at their house for another lesson because they hated being in the kitchen so much.
Her stories reminded me of that feeling that I had when the rolls out perfectly and my grandmother patted me on the back with pride.
So that was the start of a journey that continues here with this blog.
I hope you enjoy the journey as much as I am. Let’s find the joy in preparing nourishing, healthy, delicious food for our families again.
Let’s slow down long enough to enjoy the moments with our daughters rather than rushing to just get something on the table.
See you on the next page…my Grandmothers pineapple upside down cake a with a twist.