1. Describe an early food experience that has influenced the way you think about food and/or cooking. My mom has greatly influenced the way I approach cooking and entertaining. From her, I learned that the key to good cookies is to remove them from the oven before you think they’re done. She taught me the importance of seasoning to taste as I cook -- and to not shy away from butter and cream. For better or worse, she taught me that you can’t have too many serving pieces, platters, and silverware for setting a special table, even if you lack the storage space for them!
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2. What’s your least favorite kitchen task Unloading the dishwasher, hands down!
3. Your favorite kitchen tool? It’s technically my husband’s, but I love the copper hamburger ring that his grandfather made. It’s beautiful from many years of use. We use it every time we make burgers.
4. What is your idea of comfort food? Staying with the burger theme, I’d say a cheeseburger with French fries and a thick chocolate malt.
5. What is your greatest kitchen disaster? While it may not rank as my greatest kitchen disaster, I recently spilled a new bag of Penzey’s cocoa all over my stove and floor. (I hadn’t sealed it completely after my prior use, a very bad habit of mine.) It was a colossal mess to clean up, and I’m pretty sure there’s still cocoa lurking in weird places throughout my kitchen.