Hey! I’m Kristen. Welcome to Cooking for Friends. I am (currently) a stay at home mom to three kids, a longtime runner, a sometimes English teacher, and an always passionate cook. Since I was little, I’ve had an enthusiasm and interest in food. I was blessed to have a mother who was an excellent cook, and my childhood was filled with fresh produce, Sunday dinners, delicious holiday gatherings, and made-from-scratch mac and cheese. My mom’s love for cooking rubbed off on me, and as I grew older I ventured into the kitchen on my own, taking the classics my mom had taught me but giving them my own spin. My food focuses on fresh, seasonal ingredients. As a runner, I care about the health of my meals. But, as a busy mom I also care about the ease of my meals. Between the kids’ school, soccer, ballet, and drama (the theatrical kind but, also the kind that just comes along with being an overextended mom!), I don’t have a lot of time. So, every day I try to create meals that can come together quickly but are still healthy and taste great. And, while my daily cooking is usually healthy and quick, I also appreciate those special occasions, times when you just want to indulge. My favorite date nights are the ones where I’ve cooked something extra special, we pop open a nice bottle of wine, and we take a breath to just catch up, at home. Cooking for Friends is not just about what I cook, but how I cook it– with the end goal of a healthier, happier home. When friends started asking me about my cooking, perhaps about a salad from one of our summer barbecues or a red wine braised brisket from a holiday party or a lasagna delivered to a new mom or a bruschetta brought to book club, I realized that there was interest in what I did and how I did it, and Cooking for Friends was born. I hope you enjoy your time here– where good food and good friends meet.