Get To Know: Tracy O’Brien

Hello everyone, how are you all doing?! Today I want to welcome the magnificent  Tracey O’Brien. I seriously hope that you have all heard of Tracey because she is simply wonder woman, I mean this woman not only shares her great recipes with us on her blog but she also is an author! That’s right, she’s written her very own books which you can find here if you are interested. Tracey is also no newbie in air because she has traveled to many places such as Australia, Italy, New Zealand, and United Kingdom. Aren’t you all in a rush to see where she’s been and her awesome recipes? Well, before you run on over to her blog to give her a massive follow, let’s get to know her a bit better.

The Basics:

Name: Tracey O’Brien (happily took my English husband’s very Irish surname)
Nickname(s): Mrs. O’B
Occupation: Customer Services (and aspiring writer)
Nationality: New Zealander
Country Currently Living In: New Zealand

Let’s Get A Little Personal:

Favorite go to recipe?
Broccoli and anchovy pasta. Quick to make but so completely delicious at any time of the year. No matter what sort of day I’ve had I can have this on the table in twenty minutes and enjoy every gorgeous mouthful.
Favorite baked good?
Scones. And England really got it right with Devonshire Tea. Freshly baked scones with homemade jam and clotted cream. However good that sounds it tastes even better.
Favorite meal of the day?
I spend all day thinking about my next meal but I’d have to confess a particular fondness for breakfast. It heralds a new day and kick starts the metabolism. It can be cold or cooked and always puts a smile on my face.
Favorite seasoning?
Salt. Without question. It never fails to amaze me what a difference it makes to a dish. Such an incredible ingredient; I can see why historically it was used as a currency.
Favorite herb?  
Basil. So fragrant and delicious. For me it conjures memories of food I’ve eaten in Italy.
Favorite place you’ve traveled to?    
Italy. My favorite place on the planet.
This or that:
Chocolate or vanilla?    
Oh, a tough one. Love them both. But I’d have to say chocolate – dark only though please.
Sweet or savory?
Savory.   I can polish off a big bag of salt and vinegar crisps all by myself.
Baking or cooking?
Cooking. I do like to bake occasionally but I’m definitely a cook.
Cooking or going out to eat?  
Oh, another tough one. It’s no secret how much I love to cook. But another confession – I’d never turn down an opportunity to eat out. I love great food prepared by passionate chefs (they’re my very own rock stars). And NO WASHING UP. That part of cooking at home I don’t like.
Simple Questions:
When did your love for food and cooking in general grow?    
When I was a teenager I was given my first cookbook as a gift. I asked my mother if I could cook dinner one Sunday evening. After that it became a weekly thing. Everyone in the family looked forward to me cooking on Sunday. I’ve never looked back.
If you could have your own cooking show, would you take that opportunity?  Absolutely. It must be a great outlet through which to share your ideas and love of food with everyone.
What types of food are your favorite to cook?    
I really do love to cook comfort food – delicious dishes that cook long and slow in the oven. One of the things I love most about the winter season. But probably my all-time favorite dishes to cook are pasta dishes. I cannot tell you how much I love pasta. I never get bored experimenting with new combinations and flavours. And enjoying the classics. Dishes like Spaghetti Carbonara become classics for a reason – because they’re soooo good.
What cuisine can you simply not get enough of?
Italian. Are you seeing a bit of a theme going on here? Yes, I love everything Italian, including the food.
Have you ever spent a long day cooking/baking only for the food to turn out average?  
Yes! Worse than average. When I was studying at French cooking school I once had the most disastrous day cooking roast chicken of all things (how many chickens have I roasted in my time?!) I had to stand in front of a French chef while he explained everything that was wrong with my dish. On my way home that evening I threw the whole thing in the bin. Completely deflating. It was really hard to pick myself up for the next class.
Have you ever gotten frustrated from cooking/baking?  
Yes! Sometimes things just don’t go the way they’re supposed to – there are so many variables in the kitchen. But I figure it goes right a lot more than it goes wrong and that’s good enough for me.
Are you adventurous when it comes to trying new foods?
Definitely. I love trying new flavours and combinations. And it helps that I’m not in any way a fussy eater. I love it all.

Let’s Get a Deeper Connection:

What advice would you give your younger self?    
Probably my biggest regret is not going to university. I would tell my younger self (who just wanted to start working and earn money) to see the bigger picture.
What advice would you give the younger generation in general?  
Try and see the bigger picture. It’s so easy when you’re young to only think about the here and now. But your future comes around before you know it.
What has been your greatest accomplishment?    
Studying French cuisine in London. I almost gave up after that roast chicken disaster but I stuck at it and got 100% in my final exam. That definitely felt like an accomplishment.
What inspired you to write books?    
I think before you can have a love to write you must first love to read. I’ve always loved to read and then one day I sat down at the computer, a story already in my head, and started to write. Actually, speaking of accomplishments, it is an incredible feeling to finish writing a novel.
What inspires you to cook and try new recipes?    
I love to eat. It’s probably that simple. Just as you can’t love to write without first loving to read, I don’t think you can love to cook without first loving to eat.
Have you ever completely made up a recipe on your own? How did it turn out?
I often come up with my own recipes. Although having said that most recipes take inspiration from outside your own kitchen. The great thing about coming up with your own recipes is that you can tinker until you get them perfect.
What advice can you give to people that aren’t great cooks themselves?
I would say the best way to be successful in cooking is to first think about what you love to eat. Only cook with ingredients that you enjoy and make dishes that you love to eat. Take lots of inspiration from others and persevere.
Now that we have learned much much more about Tracey, let’s all go on over to her blog and give her a massive follow! Let’s also focus on her general life advice and all that she’s learned through her years of cooking!
Tracey, thank you so very much for doing this interview, I absolutely loved you’re answers and I think you are incredible!

25 thoughts on “Get To Know: Tracy O’Brien

  1. I loved all the questions awesome post!!!
    I do have a question though can anyone do this interview with you just because I would really love to if that’s the case
    Please don’t feel pressured though to say yes, I just always love reading the answers ❤️

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I’ve actually stopped by Tracey’s blog before, but I never followed. I definitely will now! It was nice to get to know her more, and I’m thrilled to find another fellow Kiwi in the blogging world 😀

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Bea, I hardly know what to say! Thank you so much for this fabulous post. It was great fun to do the interview and you’ve written it up so beautifully. Your blog is such an inspiration to us all. Thank you, thank you, thank you! xx

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Loved this interview 👍 This is so Tracey O’B 👏 A beautiful person 😍 A true inspiration and role model to those whose paths have crossed with Tracey 🌻A star person ⭐️ and breath of fresh air 💖

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Aww… what an enjoyable interview. I love Tracey’s blog. I think one of her first posts that caught my eye was on her trip to Italy… you could just feel how passionate she was about it and it all came out in this interview! Such wonderful questions!

    Liked by 2 people

  6. How haven’t I met Tracey? She sounds lovely. Tracey, we have so much in common. Italian food, pasta, always think about our next meal, loving breakfast. I don’t know you but you could still go to university! You seem like such a strong, driven, intelligent woman. It’s never to late. Thank you, Bea, for introducing us to such a lovely lady. I’m heading over to her blog now 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’m so glad I’ve met Tracey and her blog is filled with such amazing posts of her travels and food! I’m glad that you have so much in common with her and are going over to her blog! Have a lovely day gorgeous Cheila! x

      Liked by 1 person

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