"I WAS THIRTY-TWO WHEN I started cooking; up until then, I just ate. I think it kind of crawled up on me. My mother didn’t cook because I grew up in an era when most all middle-income people had maids. So she never learned, and I never really learned at all. But my grandmother was a great cook. She grew up in the farming country of Illinois—she made doughnuts and cakes and wonderful chicken, as I remember. We always had good food at her house, and at our house, too—plain good American food. But we never discussed it; it was expected to be good."