I did not have an interest in cooking until college when one of my roommates was a home economics major. We used to create multi-course dinners for our boyfriends. Then I spent my junior year abroad studying in Vienna, traveling extensively from Spain to Russia, from Scandinavia to Egypt and all parts in between, picking up the flavors and fragrances of the visited cultures. When I married I became exposed to Asian cuisine; my father-in-law was a retired chef having owned a restaurant in LA Chinatown. I started married life using recipes from cookbooks. After a couple of years my husband suggested I try creating my own recipes and as they say the rest is history.
My contesting hobby began in 1980 starting with local and regional cook-offs and newspaper and magazine contests. In those early days newspaper food sections and national magazines were the primary source of contest information. Then the era of contest newsletters began and for about 15 years there were several monthly mailings to alert us contestors of current contests. Plus a small group of friends had a round robin letter with contesting news. In 1997 I became a charter member of CCC and the electronic age of contesting began.
I’m very fortunate to have been a consistent winner over my 35 years in the hobby. My favorite prizes have been the several dozen trips to cook-offs to greet old friends and meet new ones, including 3 times a Pillsbury finalist and 2 times each a National Chicken and National Beef finalist. Also I have been the lucky recipient of 1 1 /2 dozen domestic and international prize trips with culinary experiences in Tuscany and Provence and travel to Germany and New Zealand where we had wonderful visits with friends, being my favorites. My kitchen has been outfitted with large appliances and I’ve won enough processors, blenders, knife sets, KitchenAid mixers, bread machines, pots and pans, etc. to supply my son, nieces, nephews and other family members for life.
Regardless of whether the prize is a case of pickles or a brand new car my thrill has always been the creative process, not the prize. I choose contests that fit my style of cooking. Using seasonal produce from my garden and drawing from a full pantry and freezer I enjoy developing nutritious easy to prepare recipes yet dishes that are full of flavor with textural contrasts and every dish has to look attractive. A creative twist on a cultural classic is one of my favorite ways of developing a recipe.
I hope to achieve my goal of 1000 award winning recipes; currently I sit at 983. I realize that the last 17 will no doubt be the hardest. Regardless of whether I reach that goal of 1000 I couldn’t ask for a more fulfilling and fun hobby and CCC has certainly contributed to that enjoyment. Thank you.
Congratulation Roxanne. I am sure your will reach 1000 wins. You are such a creative talent.
Congratutlations Roxanne! You are such an inspiration for all of us foodies. I’m sure you will reach that 1000 landmark in no time. Keep cooking up a storm.. sw 🙂
Big huge congratulations, Roxanne! I feel fortunate to have had the pleasure of spending some time with you at the Pillsbury Bake Off, 2006, and I hope we will meet again one day soon! You have always been such a creative recipe creator and I’m sure you will reach your goal!!!!
Roxanne, you are so deserving of this honor! I have enjoyed your wonderful recipes, not to mention your friendship, over the decades. How I remember our Round Robin days, and watching our children grow up. Congratulations, and I know we’ll be hearing very soon that you reached that 1,000 mark!
Congratulations, Roxanne! I am in awe of your accomplishments. I’m sure you will reach that 1,000 mark and soon!
Wow, Roxanne, so many wins…you are indeed creative and skilled! I know you’ll make it to 1000 very soon. I feel honored to call you a cooking bud.
Your extended family must love all those prizes, too. Congratulations and welcome to the CCC Hall of Fame.
I had been a fan for years. A co-worker from California used to bring me the Sunset Magazine and you were a winner all the time. We both started googling you when the internet came to be. It was my great honor to meet you finally at the 2008 PBO. I definitely know the 1000 mark will be coming soon.
Congratulations on entering the CCC Hall of Fame and on all those wins, Roxanne! 1000 wins is certainly within your grasp.