The winning cook and an inviting pile of her Lemon Meringue Quinoa Granola with Blueberries
Q&A with clschmidt
It’s midnight and you’re hungry. Do you reach for something savory or sweet?
Sweet! Chocolate, of course.
An ideal dinner party includes a) 2 people, b) 4 – 6 people, or c) 8 or more.
The fella and I love a nice meal together with a bottle of wine, just the two us.
How did you first become interested in cooking?
When I went off to chiropractic school, I lived on my own for the first time and found that I really liked to cook. It saved me money and it was healthier. I only had access to four TV channels, and every Saturday morning I would watch cooking shows on PBS. That was when it all started.
If you were reincarnated as a single dish, what would you be?
I would be a cayenne-spiked chocolate bar: smooth, but with a little kick!
Describe your weekend cooking style.
I am a total planner -- usually by Wednesday I have a menu of everything I will be making for the weekend, and on Friday I do a big shopping trip. The weekend is when I get creative, try new recipes, and prepare things for the upcoming week.
Is there one ingredient you can’t live without?
Just one?! Butter and cheese. (I’m from Wisconsin!)
Clschmidt's vegetable garden (shown in full bloom) includes heirloom bean plants
Describe your most spectacular kitchen disaster.
I often have my laptop in the kitchen with me, and one time I spilled ground cinnamon all over the keyboard. Like, a lot of it. I was so mad at myself, but luckily no damage was done.
What music (if any) do you listen to in the kitchen?
I usually prefer the TV on in the background over any music. I am not sure why, but I have never liked to cook while listening to music.
Which cookbook(s) do you reach for most often?
One of my favorites that I always go to is Fast, Fresh & Green by Susie Middleton. It is especially great for healthy and unique vegetable side dishes. I use the Internet quite a bit now to find recipes and inspiration. Thank you, Pinterest!
What is your most cherished food tradition?
My mom makes plum dumplings once a year when prune plums come into season. Her mom used to make them for her when she was little. It is a special, one-time-per-year dinner for my younger sister and me.
To learn more about clschmidt, check out her profile!