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Winner of Your Best Use of Aioli

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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.