My travels have taken me hundreds of thousands of miles throughout Europe, Asia Pacific, Canada and the United States. At lectures and while consulting, I am continually amazed at how delighted people are when they taste the delectable foods I prepare. The cakes, meats, vegetables and casseroles as well as those crazy, fun things I do, such as modeling clay made from dough (similar to Play Dough) for the children, lip gloss and dried flowers always delight the crowds.
In 1957, while I was in college, I had the opportunity of demonstrating the first "in-home" microwave as it made a United States cross-country tour. I cannot express the excitement I felt when I saw cupcakes "spring up" and cook in less than a minute. A potato, which always took my mother an hour to bake, cooked in only 4 minutes. A love affair was born! You can imagine my shock, however, when I discovered this microwave, which was as large as a refrigerator, cost $2,000 when a Cadillac was selling for just over $3,000.
Although I continued my interest in food and cooking, it was years later that I finally was able to acquire my very own microwave. Little did I know about the trials and tribulations which lay ahead: exploding potatoes, wooden bread and rubber eggs were only a few of the dilemmas I faced to become a "pioneer in the field of microwave cooking," to which I am often referred today.
Determined that the microwave was capable of doing far more than just reheating food, I experimented. Over the years, I developed fail-proof methods and techniques for cooking delicious foods in the microwave. As teachers of microwave cooking were not available, I learned through trial and error. As I often state at presentations, "I have blown up enough food in my lifetime that all of it would not fit into a convention center." As final tests, I tried the recipes and techniques on family, friends and in my catering business, and found them to be a big hit. Obviously, my persistence has paid off.
Everyone seems eager to learn! This was reflected while I was filming the 500+ segments for my microwave cooking show and during guest appearances on other syndicated television shows, such as Live with Regis and Kathie Lee and the TV Food Network. The many responses I received from TV, newspaper and radio mirrored the audience's eagerness to learn this HEALTHIER, quicker method of cooking.
Through the years, I have consulted for large companies including the Tupperware Company. I have collaborated on the design and development of a unique complete meal cookware system and other products, as well as assisted with recipe conversion, development, videos and cookbooks distributed throughout the world.
My first book: Definitive Microwave Cookery, now in its 7th printing. I often laugh when I look at the cover and inside pictures. I recall the photographer insisting I look like "Betty Crocker" or "June Cleaver" so people would trust me as well as microwave cooking. Since that time, many things have changed. While the microwave has become a household item, only 10 to 15% of their owners use them for anything other than reheating.