I have been cooking for 28 years. My love of all things food began when my grandmother “Nanny” let me cook in her kitchen. Food was at the center of everything in our family and is a special tie to family memories.
I am so passionate about food & encouraging people. I love to cook & gather around the table with friends & family. I love timeless recipes. I make all my food from scratch with farm fresh ingredients whenever possible. I love butter & bacon!
Coming to Lancaster Co is like a walk back in time. It reminds me of being with Nanny. I have fallen in love again with food. Food is best fresh from its source & here in Lancaster, I get my produce, meats & milk from the local farms & our farm markets. I consider it a great privilege to pass on the recipes & techniques of the generations before me to the generations to come.
I am a formally trained chef who studied in Philadelphia, which took me to France. Culinary school sharpened my skills. I have had my own catering business for the past 17 years & 12 years of food service experience before that. I have managed in restaurants with kitchen staff and trained front of the house. I have also worked in contract foodservice. However, I consider my Nanny the best chef I ever trained with. She always cooked simple timeless flavorful country fare. This combined with my mom’s family, immigrants from Sicily. Food was & is so important. I consider myself to be so blessed to have grown up with such wonderful cooking.
When I was asked to teach cooking classes at my church I became aware of how difficult it was for most people to put a meal on the table. I saw how intimidating it was for them and saw my ministry to teach; to bless them in the ways I had been blessed. The cooking classes were an instant success. We were turning people away because of limited space. I understood the reality on the broader scope of the break down of the family table. No one was teaching my generation to cook. For a lot of people, it was very much a trial by fire situation. With demanding schedules and hungry children, this was a huge need. I started the in-home cooking classes to accommodate all topic requests from “what can I make in a crock pot” to “How do I make a chicken”. Having the classes in my home make it a fun time with friends and far less intimidating. When you understand simple techniques and learn meal planning it makes dinner time a time of togetherness. I am on a crusade to take back the family table! Having the whole family seated around the table has a huge effect on the family bond.
My philosophy with food is real: butter, quality salt, food in it’s most natural state. No chemicals, no artificial colors or preservatives. There is a new and exciting movement with food that excites me; a return to the traditions of celebrating our farmers and a demand for real simple food. People have become health-minded and realize the power of health lies within the food we eat. Organic and farm fresh food is in demand. I love this movement of knowledge and I count it a great blessing to be a part of this change or rather a return.
I love all things food. I love to inspire and encourage. I believe people matter and if we meet, even just for a moment, I hope to have blessed your life in some way.