DEAR HARRIETTE: I learned how to cook a few years ago after I had my daughter. Up to then, my husband and I ate out pretty much every day. Even if we ate at home, we would buy takeout. We ate healthy, all things considered. In our city, it is easy to find good food that is not expensive. Now I have a few key dishes that I make that are pretty good, if I do say so myself.
The problem is that my relatives remember that I never cooked before, so they constantly tease me when we have family get-togethers. When I offer to cook something, they try to convince me not to do it. They say they don’t even want to try my cooking. I am offended by that. How can I get them to taste my new recipes? -- Introducing the Cook
DEAR INTRODUCING THE COOK: Work with whoever the host is to include some of your dishes at family gatherings. Don’t make a big fuss of it; just serve the food. Allow someone to compliment one of your dishes, at which point you can let them know that you made it. Stop seeking their approval, as it sets you up for that family teasing. Instead, just do your thing. Make the dishes, and let them enjoy. Over time, you will win them over.