Winner's Q&A

Winner of Your Best Use of Aioli

By • June 8, 2011 • 29 Comments

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Congratulations to EmilyC, whose Shrimp Burgers with Roasted Garlic-Orange Aioli won this week's contest for Your Best Use of Aioliearning her a handsome Marble Mortar and Pestle from Williams-Sonoma, plus big prizes from VikingOXO and Tiny Prints, and a spot in the next food52 cookbook!

EmilyC  Shrimp Burgers with Roasted Garlic-Orange Aioli

Q&A with EmilyC

  • Describe an early food experience that has influenced the way you think about food and/or cooking. 
  • I was raised on a farm in the Midwest by parents and grandparents who love to garden and cook, surrounded by proof of the connection between food and its source.  In the garden, I would follow a few steps behind my grandpa to drop seeds into his freshly dug trenches.  He would plant enough tomatoes and sweet corn to feed the entire community.  My mom and I foraged the roadsides for asparagus in the spring.  We donned long-sleeved shirts and jeans in the sticky June heat to pick wild black raspberries for pie or jam.

  • What's your least favorite food?
  • I’ve never understood a well-done steak.

  • What is the best thing you've made so far this year?
  • A strawberry-rhubarb crumble pie I made about a month ago. 

  • Describe your most spectacular kitchen disaster.
  • The first time my husband and I hosted my family for Thanksgiving dinner in our new home, I shoved the peels from five pounds of potatoes down the garbage disposal without even thinking.  Within minutes, we had a broken garbage disposal and a clogged sink sitting half-full of water.  Dirty dishes piled up everywhere until we got it fixed the next day. 

  • What is your idea of comfort food?
  • I love beef bourguignon, in particular Julia Child’s version from Mastering the Art of French Cooking, with mashed potatoes or buttered egg noodles.

  • Apron or no apron?
  • No apron.

  • What's your favorite food-related scene in a movie?
  • I smile when the curmudgeonly food critic in Disney’s Ratatouille tastes Remy’s ratatouille for the first time.  It’s such a sweet scene.

  • If you could make a show-stopping dinner for one person, living or dead, who would it be?
  • I wish I could pull out all of the stops and make my late mother-in-law, who passed away this February, an amazing meal.  Her genuine love for food and good company made cooking for her a joy, and some of my most memorable meals were shared with her and my husband around our dining room table.

  • You prefer to cook: a. alone, b. with others, c. it depends on your mood
  • My kitchen is small, so most often I prefer to cook alone.  I do like the company of my husband and 18-month old sous chef who likes to busy himself with a whisk and empty mixing bowl.

  • When it comes to tidying up, you usually: a. clean as you cook, b. do all the dishes once you've finished cooking, c. leave the kitchen a shambles for your spouse/roommate/kids to clean.
  • Either A or B.  I’ve definitely been known to leave a disaster in my culinary wake.

💬 View Comments ()

Comments (29)


almost 4 years ago SouffleBombay

Congratulations! Adorable little sous chef you have there!!


almost 4 years ago EmilyC

He definitely likes to be in the kitchen with me, often times right at my feet! : )


almost 4 years ago mcs3000

Congrats on your win. That pic of you and your son is so beautiful!


almost 4 years ago EmilyC

That's sweet -- thank you!


almost 4 years ago cookinginvictoria

Congrats again, Emily! Wonderful interview -- I loved your memories of foraging for asparagus and black raspberries with your mom and planting vegetables with your grandfather on the family farm. Your son is a real cutie. Hope to try your yummy-sounding burger recipe very soon!


almost 4 years ago EmilyC

Thanks very much!


almost 4 years ago gingerroot

Congratulations, EmilyC! Looking forward to trying your amazing recipe. Your son is adorable!


almost 4 years ago EmilyC

Thanks gingerroot -- I'd love to hear how they turn out if you try them.


almost 4 years ago boulangere

Cynthia is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

Do we all agree it's axiomatic that I Love Lucy disposal moments always happen on weekends or holidays?


almost 4 years ago Greenstuff

Chris is a trusted source on General Cooking

We had had the same thing happen with Thanksgiving potato peelings! I was a little luckier than you, as it happened at my mother-in-law's house, not mine. I love your other stories too, especially the the foraging and your liking what I refer to as "the rat movie."

I keep looking at the gorgeous picture of your shrimp burger and think about how cool it is that you used your aioli both to bind it and as a slather. I haven't made it yet, but it's definitely been on my mind. Big congratulations.


almost 4 years ago EmilyC

It's tough to learn your lesson about garbage disposals over Thanksgiving entertaining, isn't it? I'll bet neither one of us makes that mistake again! Hope you have the opportunity to try the burger.


almost 4 years ago Midge

Hurray Emily!! Congrats on your win!


almost 4 years ago EmilyC

Thanks so much, Midge!


almost 4 years ago Midge

Hurray Emily!! Congrats on your win!


almost 4 years ago EmilyC

Thanks everyone for your nice comments! I'm thrilled and very honored to have won!


almost 4 years ago inpatskitchen

Congratulations...beautiful recipe!


almost 4 years ago healthierkitchen

Cpngratulations, EmilyC!


almost 4 years ago dymnyno

Congratulations! Your shrimp burgers look sooooo good!


almost 4 years ago BlueKaleRoad

Congratulations! My grandparents were farmers in the Midwest, too, and I have lots of food memories from there...especially corn.


almost 4 years ago EmilyC

Thank you! We hope to take my son back to my parents' farm often so he knows and appreciates that way of living.


almost 4 years ago Kitchen Butterfly

Congratulations!!!!!!! I made the burgers this weekend, loved them but it was the veggie mix that proclaimed itself the star. I've made it to go with grilled shrimp, used up the leftovers to top pasta....Well done


almost 4 years ago EmilyC

I'm happy that you tried the burgers and shared your variations! The vegetable mix and shrimp sound lovely over pasta.


almost 4 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.



almost 4 years ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Congrats on the win, your little one is so cute.


almost 4 years ago boulangere

Cynthia is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

Warm congratulations on your wonderful invention. My children grew up the same way your beautiful little guy is.


almost 4 years ago EmilyC

Ahh, thanks. It's important to us that he understands and appreciates where food comes from. We're hoping to make it back to the Midwest late summer; my mom has over 30 tomato plants in her garden this year, most of them heirlooms!


almost 4 years ago Panfusine

congrats on the win, your l'il sous chef is adorable!


almost 4 years ago Sagegreen

Congrats on your win! What a doll your little one is!


almost 4 years ago lastnightsdinner

Congrats on your win!