Cooking FAQ

Where do you cook?

I do all of my cooking at my apartment in Queens with the love of my life and our wonderful yellow dog. Allie chimes into the shows regularly and some nights you'll even hear the mutt bark out a greeting. It's a very small cooking space but so far I've managed to turn out some pretty tasty things, which just goes to show you what can be done with limited cooking space.

What are your favorite foods to cook?

I love pretty much everything I cook, its like a requirement before I take a run at the recipe. But my absolute favorite dishes are all fall/winter dishes. Its just so nice to walk into a warm, aromatic kitchen and know that you're getting ready to eat something tasty out of it. On a cold, wet, fall day the kitchen is practically my favorite place to be.

What about wine/beer pairings?

I will almost always talk about good wines or brews to go with the meals. Its not that I have a problem, its just that those two classes of beverages pair so well with so many foods. If you abstain, regardless of the reason, then please ignore my suggestions and stay true to your convictions. Pour a nice glass of sweetened ice tea, secure in the knowledge that that's a perfectly acceptable toasting medium. 

What about cooking for large groups/catering style?

Quite often I like to setup my recipe portions to be 'per serving' so you can multiply them up however many times you want, however beware of certain things...

  1. Alchohol and spices can overpower a recipe if you double them like you do everything else. Only use 1.5 times as much of those two while still fully doubling everything else.
  2. When scaling down eggs... best bet is to usually mix the white and yolk and divide from there.
  3. Do NOT double oven temps, just bump them by about 25o up or down depending on the direction you are scaling.

If you have a special occaision and really need a recipe scaled then talk to me in the forums and I'll be happy to take a peek.

Do you have a book of recipes?

Ugh, several shelves full. Its like an obsession to collect the next great cookbook. But honestly I'm down to using just a handful.

Oh, you mean do I have my own cookbook? Not yet. :)

Any kid/vegan/diabetic/etc friendly recipes?

I try to be very aware of my audience's cooking requirements and always try to keep those in mind. However, that being said, there are some dishes that just cannot help but be exclusive to certain food choices. In such cases I will definitely try to suggest alternatives. And of course, since these classes are interactive we can always throw the question out to the class members for their input. No matter what your food choices, someone out there has probably made the same ones.

Do you have any formal training?

I've spent most of my life in the kitchen. In fact my journey there started way back in middle school when I talked my mom into letting me take a swing at cooking. My first attempt was banana-nut bread (still one of my favorites) that almost got the house burned down! But after a few months of cooling down and much wheedling on my part mom let me take another run at it. When I was able to turn out a perfect angel food cake from scratch, I knew I was on to something. I have always loved my time in the kitchen and the wonderful things that come out of that. At some point I plan on attending the CIA but for now I remain blissfully self-taught by literally thousands of hours in the kitchen and snuggled up with great instructional cookbooks.

Serious, I've read cookbooks in bed at night. And enjoyed it.

Will you be my personal chef-tutor?

Actually, yes, I will. :)

I offer a service where you can buy out an entire Cooking School event and send out the invites to whomever you want; your brothers or sisters, parents, best friends, but not your weird Uncle Bob; entirely up to you.You can even make requests of the topic that I will teach on. Just shoot me an email with details of where, when and what, and I'll be happy to get back in touch with you.

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