Meet the Cook: Robin from Rurification

Post by community member:

Say hello to Robin from Solsberry, IN!

Q. What are your favorite things to cook?

I love making jams and jelly.

My favorite jam–black raspberry, from our very own black raspberries that we pick at the peril of our bodies.

And cheese.

My first ‘aged’ cheese. It almost killed my youngest daughter, who is by far my biggest cheese fan, to have to wait four whole days before she could eat it.

I love the alchemy of it. The truth is, I’m not much of a cook at all. I think of the kitchen more as a lab to play in and hope that something delicious happens at the end of the day. And if I’m scientific at all about it, it’s the mad scientist approach. My husband cooks a lot more than I do. I take care of the garden to make sure there are plenty of good things to cook.

Fava bean plant.

In fact, when I told my husband that I was asked to the do “Meet the Cook”, he laughed. Hard.

Q. How/when did you learn to cook?

I learned to cook from Mom first, then books.

Q. Tell us about some of your cooking triumphs.

I make a fabulous Danish Yule Bread for Christmas. It has ridiculous amounts of butter and milk and has to be handled just so, but I’ve mastered it and I love it because it makes me look like I can actually bake bread. Also I make great pie.

Q. What was your most memorable cooking tragedy?

Horehound candy. It cooked for hours. And hours. And turned brown. By no means was it candy in the end. I’ll submit a post just for that cooking tragedy. It’s more than just a paragraph.

Q. Describe your kitchen. Do you love it, hate it, and why?

The kitchen is small, but reasonably well equipped. I’d love more empty counter space, but it’s usually filled with produce, dishes and jars of ginger, herbs, salts, and the results of my husband’s and daughters’ cooking efforts. They like to cook, so I don’t have to so much. Yay!

Q. Is your pantry organized and are your kitchen drawers tidy? We need to know.

I just snorted my tea. My pantry and drawers would be organized if I were the only one cooking. I’m not. And let us just say that the need for OCD organizing is not shared by the other members of my family.

Q. Do you have any favorite family cooking traditions?

Every Christmas I make Yule Bread.

For my Dad’s birthday, my daughter bakes his favorite German chocolate cake from scratch. Since they don’t remember him at all, it’s a way for us to bring out all the Grandpa stories and tell the girls about him. The same thing happens all summer every time we eat radishes (on bread and butter with salt and pepper, just the way Grandpa used to).

We make strawberry rhubarb pie just the way my mother taught me to.

Q. What is the one gadget (or ten) you couldn’t do without in your kitchen?

Those would be my food processor, cast iron cookware, KitchenAid mixer, pastry blender (which I love but everyone else views with great suspicion and which my husband has mangled a bunch of times), garlic press.

Q. If you had to take one food to a deserted island, what would it be?

That would have to be… Pie.

Q. What is your go-to comfort food?

Again… Pie.

Some of Robin’s favorite recipes that she’s contributed to Farm Bell Recipes include:

Robin’s Dipping Herbs

Homemade Vinegar

See all of Robin’s recipes and blog posts!

Robin blogs at Rurification.

Do you have a recipe post or kitchen-related story to share on the Farm Bell blog? See Farm Bell Blog Submissions for information and to submit a post.

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