Growing up, my mom did hardly any of the cooking for our family. She could microwave frozen fish sticks and toast Eggo waffles, and she had one signature dish of meatballs with jarred Ragu sauce over spaghetti, but that’s about as far as her culinary prowess extended. There were a few times when she attempted to make slice-and-bake cookies, but they either ended up burnt or she walked away without preheating the oven and would come back hours later to find sad blobs of dough still waiting on the baking sheet.
As president of a video production company and a singer in a blues band, my mom had many talents — cooking was just not one of them. So she deferred to my dad, a wonderful cook, when it came to feeding us. But all that changed some years ago when my dad’s ability and desire to cook was thwarted by illness.