• Member since May, 2006
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I learned at an early age that I really loved to cook. As a young boy, I spent a lot of time in the kitchen with my mother or next door with my paternal (Polish) grandmother. Rather than just cooking for me and my siblings, both of these wonderful women took the time to teach me how to cook for myself.

I feel blessed to have been expose to many "different and varied cuisines." My fathers parenrts lived in pre-WW1 partitioned Russian Poland and White Russia (Belaja Rus). Struggling in surfdom, they were faced with atrocious living conditions, unemployment, starvation, and religious persecution by the Russian campaign to eradicate the Polish national identity as well as the Roman Catholic Church from the former Polish Kingdom. Deprived of any dignity, my grandparents joined the mass exodus of Poles and Jews and emigrated, from Russian Poland to the United States in the early 1900's. My mothers family comes from the foothills of the Arkansas Ozarks with both Scots-Irish and Native American Indian (Cherokee) roots going back to the early 1800's. I was born, raised and live in Northwest Indiana, on the southern tip of Lake Michigan. This area of Indiana and all the way up through Chicago and on to Milwaukee is one of the largest melting pots of European, and in particular, Eastern European immigrants in the world.

Diversity in cuisines is a very tangible benefit of diversity in peoples. Our family members and friends, along with their foods and traditions, included ethnic: Pole, Belarus, Lithuanian, Latvian, Russian, Carpatho-Rusyn, Ukrainian, Moldavian, Romanian, Yugoslavian, Serb, Croat, Slovene, Hungarian, Slovak, Czech, German, Greek, Italian, Swed, Irish, Puerto Rican and Mexican. Family and friends also included varied persuasions of Protestant, Roman Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, Jewish and Muslim religions. I believe that the diversity of these peoples and their foods qualify as a "different and varied cuisine" experience! Basically, I grew up to not only tolerate but to embrace diversity in beliefs, religions, traditions and above all food! I value that highly...

My mother, both my grandmothers and several aunts were always trying new things in the kitchen; they encouraged me to do the same. I can remember my mother trying a new recipe at least 4 or 5 days out of the week, every week, for years -- yes, years! She would find cookbooks that interested her and in some instances, try virtually every recipe in them. Some good, some not so good. One good thing though, no-matter what the recipe result, as she learned "what worked" or "what didn't," so did I. My mother taught me to be adventurous, to not be afraid to experiment. After-all, you have nothing to lose but boredom. She taught me to try new recipes and techniques. You may not like them all, but you are sure to make some new discoveries that could very well become life-long favorites.


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I finally took the time to look you up on BigOven this evening. I simply wanted to thank you for giving this mom some great recipes! I had no idea cooking could be this much fun. And I had no idea that I could make food that tasted this good. Many thanks!!

1 years ago    RecipesRock

Just a quick thank you for all of the recipes you have posted; I've tried several of yours and they are all winners. Keep 'em coming! Darlene

1 years ago    Thekidsmom1224

I am new to this web site. But I have a question about the banana bread recipe that I think you posted, it is recipe number 163107. This may be a bit silly, but does it matter if the loaf pan that I use is metal or glass? I don't have either so I have to go buy one so I want to get the right one for this recipe.
I hope this is the right place and person to ask my question because I don't know where else to go, thanks

1 years ago    singleguy55

Hi! Question here. I read that corn tortillias bought here in the U.S. are fried, but other countries grill them on hot stones, or bake them. Do you know anything on this. As I said before, I love your knowledge of cooking and of other countries.

1 years ago    aphilbeck8

Thank-you Sgrishka! I always check your contributions for ideas and know the recipes will be delicious. Your time and effort make this ap worth using. I also appreciate Beachbumette. I can locate convenient, contemporary recipes from your listings. Porpo83

1 years ago    Porpo83

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