Norma Torres

Norma Torres
/ Website

Since my early 20s I’ve developed an unyielding passion for nurturing and nourishing my family, friends and loved ones with twists on traditional recipes and “inventions” that are not always successful, but genuinely authentic. Discovering world cuisine and experimenting with ingredients has provided the same joy and inspiration that a fashion designer or a song writer must derive from their creations (I cannot sew or sing). The process can be both joyous and tragic and always challenges my ability to keep it together. I have been known to drop a few expletives when something goes wrong and moan with sensuous approval when I hit a “G” spot in my palate….sooo good….sooo good!

 

I’d like to think my readers gain a true sense of who I am as a mother, grandmother, wife and friend and every kind word about my cooking invigorates and energizes me to continue to strive for excellence in the kitchen.  Platanos Mangos and Me! is an expression of my faith in God and love for humanity!

 

My blog started as a way for me to express my love for the 3 “F’s”…family, friends and food.  I also wanted to create a keepsake so that my family would have the basic knowledge of the recipes they most enjoyed during their childhoods, particularly those that represent their collective heritage which is such a mixture.  We have roots in Spain, Corsica, Puerto Rico, Venezuela, Colombia, Philippines, Eastern Europe, Germany, Cuba, Portugal and my new Irish-American family which I have recently acquired through marriage.  We embrace them all, especially at the dinner table.

 

Now that I started blogging I feel that my dinner table has gotten very large as I share my cooking experiences, good times and memories will all of you.  We also share in this blogger sphere, the death of a parent, the birth of a child and all those wonderful memories that crop up once in a while. I used to think that there is nothing that brings people together than food…but now I think is food and blogging.   As a publisher, you allow everyone to take a peek into your personal life, your love of food and your curiosity.  You share knowledge and the pleasure of feeding people and they in return feeding and comforting you.

 

I laugh right now, because I just had a thought:  Where did all my dreams go…I used to dream of vacations, silly inane things and the only thing I dream about no is food, recipes and what will be my next post. 

 

My memories are great childhood memories and of course, food related.  When my Dad would sit me on his lap and he had his glass of homemade wine, his homemade cheese and his bread just out of the oven.  He would dunk a bit of the bread in his wine and let me taste.  Going to a show with my mom in Spain and instead of popcorn we had olives from a little wooden keg and langoustines in a newspaper cone and that never ending supply of fresh baked bread.  In Venezuela my arepas con chocolate caliente (corn cakes with hot chocolate); going every Sunday to an Italian restaurant to eat spaghetti and meatballs.  The stairs then seemed so long and once upon returning there years later to find there were only five steps…but we ran up those stairs for that weekly treat after Mass.

 

Readers tell me that they enjoy the way I give personal perspective on the food that I grew up with while giving it a new twist here and there to tweak interest.  I have presented many traditional Latin dishes and give them a more contemporary finish, but don’t think that Platanos, Mangoes and Me! is all Latin.  I have taught Pizza making and show readers how to feed a crowd because I have posted some of my catering parties.  I am a personal Chef, have my own catering business, work also as a personal assistant and now food blogger.

 

Blogging has contributed to my enthusiasm because of the community, constant challenges and their support.  An international family at it’s best…just like mine.