I was born on Long Island, New York many years ago. My father was in the military so that’s just kind of where I “popped” out. We moved just about every 3 years when I was growing up so I was able to experience many different foods and tastes from all over the country and the world.

I have long had the belief that a great meal is more than just the food that is served. Any plain burger can fill you fill you up. A great meal is about the fellowship when everyone is standing around in the kitchen talking and helping while the meal is being prepared. It’s about the creativity that comes with living life without a measuring cup and relying on your tastes and experience to create awesome meals. It’s about the whole experience of spending time with family and friends connecting over delicious food. Those memories last a lot longer than the food no matter how tasty it is.

It’s also about not being afraid to mess up. Some of the greatest successes I’ve had come from a lesson learned out of a failure. For instance, pureed fresh pineapple in a marinade is a bad idea. (Unfortunately, I learned that lesson twice).

The point is that food (under most circumstances) is nothing to be afraid of. The worst that will happen is that you don’t like something. We all had to try our favorite food for the first time at one point. So go out there and try something new, cook something with an ingredient that you never would have used and most importantly have fun.