Hi! I’m Elle’s Mom. Elle’s a toddler so she doesn’t actually do much cooking outside of her plastic kitchen in the playroom, which she’s quite good at I might add. I married a microwave-hating, born-domesticated wonderful man who loves to buy kitchenware and I love him very much. I didn’t grow up with an instinct to cook (you can read about that here) but his lifestyle of home cooked food sparked my interest a few years ago and now I love cooking. (Note: I didn’t say I was good at it yet.) I’m trying my hand at new recipes, regularly-scheduled cleaning and other house maintenance, and just general domestication. Hope you enjoy!

Q + A

Why Elle’s Kitchen?

Elle’s Kitchen, named largely for my daughter Elle, is part homage to Hell’s Kitchen, NY, part Hell’s Kitchen (one of the best shows out there) and mirrors how my family is settling down but speeding up. We’re messy and don’t have it all figured out, with spices and general life, so sometimes things can be really salty and a lot of times they are really very sweet.

What’s your favorite cookbook?

I had the pleasure of meeting and hearing from Tamar Adler at South By Southwest Eco in Austin a few years back. I was so inspired by her approach to cooking and raising her family, which includes sustainable cooking where you basically throw no food away. I try to mimic that in my daily life but I have to admit that I still have to trash byproduct (i.e. broccoli stems, excess pork fat) more than I want – we’re still working on our compost at home. In addition to her approach to cooking and life, I really enjoyed her writing style, which blends anecdotes with recipes. Unfortunately, I lost my signed copy of her book An Everlasting Meal during a flood and have yet to replace it. Right now, I’m really enjoying cooking through Michael Symon’s Live to Cook.

“All ingredients need salt. The noodle or tender spring pea would be narcissistic to imagine it already contained within its cell walls all the perfection it would ever need. We seem, too, to fear that we are failures at being tender and springy if we need to be seasoned. It’s not so: it doesn’t reflect badly on pea or person that either needs help to be most itself.” – Tamar Adler, An Everlasting Meal