When I was young I was fortunate enough to have numerous culinary influences in my life. My mother and both of my Grandmothers shaped my future in cuisine. My mother cooked every meal for my father, brother and me. Take out was a treat that happened rarely. Her mother is how I remember holiday meals. The intricate meals that took days in preparation was a skill that took years to hone. My mother and Memi passed their knowledge to me so that I may carry that torch to make magnificent meals for my family.
Now granted, I don't think my mother or either grandmother foresaw the extent to which I would take their teachings. To them, these were recipes, methods, and memories from their own childhood holidays. I took that legacy and made a career. You could put it simply by saying I am a Pastry Chef because of my mother's love for Banana Puddin, my Memi's love for Christmas Orange Pudding and my Grandma's love for English Pie.
Now that I have my own family, I have my own extravagant holiday meals. I'm not joking when I say I plan these course dinners with appetizers out months in advance. It might be overkill to most but to me, it's my legacy. One that I will hopefully pass to my children. My daughter in particular already has an affinity for anything dough related. But let's be honest here, who doesn't love playing with flour and squishy dough? It's such a simple thing to put your hands in the dough and make something: pizza crust, bread, or pie. And it never seems like much to me, as a parent, to give my kid a bit of dough to play with while I'm making dinner or cooking for a customer. But those memories are some of the fondest I have of my childhood and hope one day my kids will say the same about playing in the kitchen with me.