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I'm a serious accomplished home cook & baker. I scratch cook at home most of the time, and like using fresh ingredients from local farmers whenever possible. I learned to cook, bake and make candy from my mother, who like most other women of her generation, cooked everything from scratch because there was no other option in those days. When I was in my twenties, I worked for a high end cruise line, which piqued my interest and tastes in international cuisine and gourmet cooking. With 40+ years of experience in cooking for my family and friends, I usually just cook by adding a bit of this and a pinch of that. I also use recipes, but tend to modify them liberally. I've travelled extensively and like authentic international cuisines, not the americanized versions. I'm always looking for authentic ingredients and recipes.