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FromtheBookshelf's interview

Interview by Laurence

We interviewed FromtheBookshelf!

Visit the blog: From the Bookshelf.

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Hello FromtheBookshelf, so tell us...

When did you begin your blog, and what inspired you to start it?

My first blog post was in April of 2009. I realized I had hundreds of cookbooks in my kitchen all screaming to be used, and while all read and flagged with recipes I couldn't wait to try, most had not been used. My aim was to close my eyes, reach out, grab a book and go! I've added some from piles of recipes torn out of magazines, a few of my own, and some special requests for the special folks in my life.

Are you involved in the blogging community - how do you attract new readers?

I'm involved in the blogging community as an avid reader. I am awful at posting on other people's blogs, though I do have the best of intentions. I try to get involved in various cook-alongs, but truthfully, I am just not that disciplined. I started this blog for my own enjoyment, and blogging without boundaries or timing. Hopefully new readers find me through FaceBook, Twitter or Pinterest.

Who are your culinary influences?

My cooking influences? I would love to say Julia Child, always seems like the answer of choice. In my case though, I would have to say my Grandmother, my Mom , my friend Ernie, and my love. My Grandmother kept both our Italian and Greek recipes alive and well, and happily passed them on to me. Over the course of my childhood, my Mom made the most fabulous meals and has always been an adventurous cook. Ernie taught me to bake and to not be afraid of measuring and alchemy in the kitchen. And my love, well, nothing beats the smile on his face when I make something he finds particularly tasty.

If you could be a contestant or guest on any cooking show what show would you choose?

I would love to cook in a kitchen with Nigella Lawson, Lidia Bastianish or Gordon Ramsey. But here the answer of Julia Child fits perfectly - I would love to be in a kitchen with Julia. She always seemed to be having a fabulous time, and there was always wine!

What is your earliest food memory?

I come from an Italian and Greek background, there isn't anything BUT food memories. We talk about lunch at breakfast, and dinner at lunch. We fight over food and love over food and come together over food. It's those combinations of family and sitting around the table eating together that are my earliest food memories.

Do you have a secret ingredient, a product you use a lot that is unexpected?

Oh, how I wish I had a whimsical answer to this question! In our house, there's a lot of garlic - no secret there, you can practically smell us coming. I do use chocolate or brown sugar a lot with beef, especially on the grill. It adds a very subtle flavoring and enhances the beef flavor.

Is there any dish, ingredient or type of food you refuse to cook?

Unequivocally BRUSSELS SPROUTS. I have never met a brussels sprout I like - even adding bacon to them. Fortunately for me, those I cook for dislike them as well. They have been likened to warm chunks of dry wall. I may not go quite that far, but just no, no, no.

When you have a last minute get together, what are your go to dishes?

If it's really last minute, pasta. Sauce may vary, but pasta is easy to throw together for 2 or 20. Also, my own version of a Contadina/Scarpariello dish - small chicken thighs, cut up sausage, potatoes, peppers, some herbs, a little white wine and into the oven - a green salad and some toasted baguette and dinner is served. It also all cooks in one pan and doesn't need any fussing, tis gives me time to straighten up the house!

What are your goals for your blog? Where would you like to see it in the next year? Five years?

I would like to blog more often. I would also like to develop more of my own recipes - especially using things I grow myself.

Thank you FromtheBookshelf for answering our questions and see you soon!
Published by Laurence - 08/26/2013

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