My friends and family during my teenage years inspired
me to keep cooking with all their compliments. French Onion Soup
was a big hit and so was biscuit dough rolled around brown sugar
and butter and baked to gooey goodness. We nicknamed it "Bulk"!
From there I went into making bread and desserts. I had myself pegged
for a pastry chef and my first restaurant job had me baking the
"in" foods of the late '70's-carrot cakes, cheesecakes and quiches.
The owner, Taro and his partner Tiger, were Japanese, and it was
through them that I was introduced to the wonders of Japanese foods:
precision knife skills, sashimi, eggplant dengaku, oden, chilled
tofu. Of all cuisines, this is the one that I still have the most
awe and respect for. Taro's girlfriend Judy, was an amazing cook.
It was her confidence with cooking that made me more comfortable
with cooking too.