My Chocolate Story June 11 2015
I am so excited to lauch my new website, selling my delicious handmade chocolates. When I was 16 years old, I was looking for a little hobby to start. While shopping with my Mom one day, we decided to stop into a candy store. I told the owner of the store that I would like to learn how to make molded chocolates. She sold me a few little supplies to get me started. I have been making assorted chocolates since.
At the age of 21, I met my husband, Mike. We were intoduced together by mutual friends, on a blind date. I decided to make chocolate covered cherry cordials for dessert. After eating a wonderful meal my friend had cooked for us, she took out the chocolates. Mike asked me a question I have never heard from a man before. "Where do you buy your chocolate supplies?" I was shocked!!! When did anyone ever care, let alone a man, where my supplies came from?? Well, I proceeded to tell him. His next response was even more shocking!!! He explained to me that his Aunt had owned the candy supply store and his Mother ran the business. Yes, everyone..I knew my future Mother-In-Law before I met my husband.
Yes, over the years I did teach myself how to cook. Well, I did have four children and husband to feed. I enjoyed sharing the love and passion I had for food with my children. But chocolate was always an extra fun hobby and activity to work with. Each year, with each child, I would be invited to his/her's class to do chocolate making. How fun was that? To see their eyes light up when I walked through their door. I bet the student's Moms where especially happy to have their kids return home from school all wired up also. Definitely, great memories.
Today, I bring you my hand picked, selection of specialty gourmet chocolates that I am very proud of. I hope you continue to enjoy what my family and friends have enjoyed for many years.
WINNER OF SIDE DISH CATEGORY - WORLD FOOD CHAMPIONSHIPS 2012
I grew up in a small Italian community in East Haven, Conn. My attributes of Italian heritage and food being a constant, ubiquitous staple throughout my life as the driving force behind my love of cooking and food. Together with Mike, my husband, we raised four children in a house that embraced food. I incorporated into their everyday activities, from picking fruit to experimenting with new recipes in the kitchen. While some people call cooking an "art," I call it "therapy." My kitchen was a place I can escape into my own little world of peace.
I qualified for the World Food Championships by winning grand prize in a Just a Pinch online qualification contest. I used the same Potato Cobb Salad that would eventually be featured as one of my two dishes at the WFC Final Table.
Relatively new to the competition cooking scene, I entered my first recipe contest two years ago. From there, I went on to audition for the hit Fox cooking show "MasterChef, not making it very far. That experience was enough to encourage me to start my own recipe blog (worldclasscooking.blogspot.com) and push myself to challenge my culinary creations. I also created this blog to record my special recipes, especially so my children would be able to access them whenever they wanted to.
At the World Food Championships, my two dishes were Cobb Potato Salad and a Creamed Broccoli Cheese Soup. The Cobb Potato Salad included my original mayonnaise-based dressing with red skin potatoes, topped with turkey, bacon, avocado, egg, tomato, bleu cheese and scallions. The Creamed Broccoli Cheese Soup had sautéed broccoli, parsnips, celery and garlic that was pureed for creaminess, add in Philadelphia® Cream Cheese, chicken broth and Kraft® Velveeta and finished off with roasted cauliflower as a garnish and drizzled with sweet chili sauce.
While I have created hundreds of different recipes, my recipe for success boils down to hard work, ambition and an undying love for food.
Winning the title of the "Side Dish" Category has been such a great honor. I thank everyone from World Food Championships, family and friends for all the encouraging support and great future opportunities.