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A former engineer with a decade in the food manufacturing sector, I now teach high school. During college (and several years I took off from college), I worked as a cook/sous chef/pit master at several local restaurants, including an upscale fine-dining restaurant and attached smokehouse, a casual seafood and steak restaurant, and an upscale cafe/ice cream shop that served breakfast, lunch, and dinner, as well as weekend brunch.
I am retired from the Army for health reasons, and I pursue a Primal/paleo diet most of the time (again for health reasons). But, I know how to throw down in the kitchen, so I occasionally pull out the stops to treat my family and friends.
I grew up in the South, so I do love Southern foods. But, Thai and Indian food are almost like soul food for me. I love the flavors and spices.
I also love Italian food and baking, but again, for health reasons, I avoid grains (and pasta) and consume minimal amounts of sugar. These days, I stick to simple vegetable dishes that make the flavors pop and roasted, grilled, and braised meats and seafoods with rich, complex flavors.