Hi, I’m Kate! I can honestly say that my life revolves around food! But who’s doesn’t??? Whether you’re a passionista about food or chow down only for survival, everyone needs to eat…I personally feel I am blessed for having such an interested mind for almost anything found in the kitchen! I can’t tell you exactly where it came from but the interest started from a young age. I grew up in a household where dinner was on the table every night. My childhood memories are sitting down to the table when my Dad arrived home from work and having a hot meal that my Mom prepared. Some examples of the meals she would cook are Quiche Lorraine, homemade Chili, Spaghetti with Meat Sauce, Veal A Limone, Pan Fried Scallops with a lemon butter sauce…on Sundays, it was usually a traditional Roast Beef dinner, or Roast Chicken dinner…to date, my Mom still makes the best Roast Beef dinner and the best gravy (beef or chicken) I have ever had!!! I think my Mom had an influence over my interest in food/meals because she instilled in me, the importance of sitting down to enjoy a meal, the importance of setting a table properly to dine and just simply, the simplicity of a meal – her meals were never complicated, always a main dish, a salad or vegetable and a starch. So simple and always satisfying. My life revolved, to a certain extent in childhood, around food by being a part of the structure of my lifestyle. Dinner was a structured part of every day life and where most of my family communication took place, most things could be said, most family vacations were planned etc. It was a time in the day when you knew both parents would be together to talk to and could count on it every day. Traditions were instilled by planning a day before Christmas each year to bake my Great Grandmother’s recipe for shortbread cookies. It’s what gets me in the holiday spirit every year!
Although my Dad didn’t prepare many of the meals, I’m going to say he has had a strong influence on shaping my love for quality of food, whether it was dining out or buying quality ingredients to prepare a meal, I have a fascination for quality and I believe I have him to thank for that. At a very young age, I remember having exquisite meals with my Dad. We skied a lot, so on weekends we often drove to Vermont or took trips to Colorado/Whistler, etc., where there is no shortage of great dining! (I didn’t know that then, but I sure do now!) By this time, I was in the age range of 5-12 for most of these trips, so it’s not like I was taking advantage of these “fine” restaurants we were going to and ordering the most interesting thing on the menu but whether I ordered a plate of pasta, or a steak or fish and chips, I think I developed an appreciation for quality fare at a very young age, without even realizing it. Having the quality of these basic foods at such a young age set a standard that I don’t intentionally try to live by but my palate forces me to! There is nothing fine dining about fish and chips but I can sure as hell tell you where to get the best of it! And pasta can be as basic as butter and fresh parmigiano or as complex as a recipe from a Batali cookbook but if you don’t have quality pasta it’s not going to taste half as good as it should. Quality is the basis of everything – which does not make me a snob or pretentious or high maintenance or difficult to please! It just makes me a damn good cook and great person to ask where to get the best of something or to ask for an honest opinion about the food at a restaurant I’ve been to! That’s all!
If you’re not already convinced that my love of food started at an early age, there are two instances when my Dad and I were dining that he stills tells the story of to his day. I was probably about 7 years old and in one instance, we were having dinner after a long ski day at a white tablecloth, tuxedoed waiter type restaurant and I ordered the roast beef dinner. When the waiter placed my meal in front of me, my eyes bugged out of my head, I was so excited! I asked for extra “jus” and as he drizzled the “jus” on top, I wafted the smell with my hand and said “Mmmm Dad, smells soooo good” – I was 7!!! Who says that??? Most 7 year olds are begging their parents to bring them to McDonald’s! But I think my Dad loves that story because it was so out of character for someone that age, I remember the waiter even have a chuckle! The other story, (when I was about the same age), is from when I was out with my parents for dinner in Florida and when we sat down at a restaurant, the waiter brought us a basket of bread. I grabbed a piece of the bread and took a bite and said “Mmmm…this is going to be a good meal!” and one of my parents laughed and said, “why’s that?” and I said “…because the bread served at a restaurant is a reflection of the rest of the meal to come…if a restaurant has good bread, it has good food, if the bread isn’t great, the food usually isn’t either…”. Again – who says that??? Never mind…what 7 year old says that??? And although that statement was just that of a 7 year old, I still stick true to that statement. As with everything, there is the exception but generally speaking, I believe my little statement packs a lot of punch!
When I became old enough to start cooking, through my teen years and early 20’s, I incorporated cooking into time spent with my friends and family hosting dinner parties, having people over for a casual meal or planning dinners at new restaurants as often as I could! Everyone has always been pleased to sit down to a good meal, socialize amongst good eats, and celebrate with memorable feasts! I’ve been know to even show up at friends’ or family members’ homes with bags of groceries, ready to cook a full spread…I’ve always been eager to be in the kitchen as often as I can!
As a grown woman in my 30’s now, my love and interest in food has matured and developed and is constantly evolving, as much as the other aspects of my life! Born and raised in Toronto, Canada, I started this blog while living in Miami Florida in 2011. I am now back in Toronto and look forward to continuing my new found hobbie of blogging to share my cooking experience with friends and family and who ever else I encounter in my foodie adventures!
I want to show through my blog that cooking does not need to be difficult – in fact, it can be calming and therapeutic. I know so many people who are intimidated by certain dishes and recipes but really, there is no need to be! If you can read, and know how to follow instructions, you can cook! You just need to have a little patience and the desire to create a wonderful finished product! I also want to use this blog as a forum to simply share the dishes I’ve prepared and welcome any questions or comments on the photos or journaling of my kitchen creations.