In retrospect, I wish I’d named this blog Culinary Madness, because sometimes I feel truly mad about my obsession with all things food. I dream recipes, I wake up excited about breakfast, I read many cookbooks, and am always planning meals, menus, and grocery lists. And now, thanks to my local deli Amazon.com, I can get my hands on even more ingredients!
So who is Chef Mimi? I’m a darn good self-taught cook who’s passionate about everything food related. There’s no Cordon Bleu in my past. I was given the Chef Mimi nickname years ago by my sister, and it stuck. My real name is Mimi; I’m half Italian and half French.
Professionally, I was a personal cook for eight years and I catered for ten after that. I was a food writer, had a weekly newspaper column, taught cooking classes, worked as a recipe developer….. it helps to be a big fish in a little pond. I worked tirelessly as a health advocate promoting feeding children healthy food (way ahead of my time), had a cooking show (not good at that), and even wrote a cookbook (self-published). So much of my life focused on food and cooking, mostly because I love to eat!
Cooking only became important and exciting to me when I married almost 40 years ago. I could whip up Crêpes Suzettes, (thanks Mom!) but had never cooked asparagus or made a white sauce. So I devoured cookbooks, and followed new recipes every day and learned from the ground up.
My husband was limited in his tastes back then, and I was raised by a fabulous “chef” in her own right, read Growing up Foodie if you’re interested, so you can imagine the challenges!
We also had two daughters along the way. I challenge any restaurant chef to take a mom’s place in her kitchen on a daily basis for 18 years. Three meals a day, every day, with good nutrition as the highest priority. That is a hard job, but one I will never regret having done so relentlessly. I’ve been accused of micro-managing their meals, however, it definitely taught me to creatively use whatever I have in the pantry and refrigerator, which is still something I naturally do to this day.
I don’t work in any food capacity professionally any more. But I still cook! Now my grown daughters come home, and it’s full-out hors d’oeuvres, fun drinks, creative meals, and flowing wine. Work? Yes !!! But enjoying food with friends and family is the best life has to offer.
Journey with me as I cook and learn even more, because there’s always more to learn.
If you want a laugh, check out my post On Being a Food Snob!