About

Finishing touches to the plate

Making food for other people to savor and enjoy has always been a part of my life and of who I am.  To inquire about working with me, you can contact me via the form in the sidebar to the right.  I offer a range of Chef Services, including catering and private dinners, menu development and execution, food styling assisting, and events planning.  I have also been a consultant to food brands and non-profits on social media marketing and building your brand and your business as well as for website editing and writing and have spoken on internet copyright issues.

Whisk for AboutI learned to cook at a young age, spending time in the kitchen watching my mother prepare our meals.  By the time I was in high school, I was pretty much fixing dinner for the family most evenings.  In college, I’d bake cookies as a study break and dole them out to the dorm floor (a batch of these cookies gave me car-borrowing privileges from a friend) and make dinners to share on occasion. It was then that I also started to get into making dishes from cooking magazines and books, rather than just simply reading the articles or looking at the pictures.

Oven Mitt for AboutAfter university, no matter what job I had, I’d spend time dreaming up menus and throwing brunches and dinner parties from magazine recipes or from ones I’d created myself.  Then, after spending many years working in foreign policy, non-profit, and financial services, jobs which enabled me to live in London, Bologna, and Strasbourg as well as to travel to Russia, Ukraine, and Poland, among other countries, I started the blog portion of this website.  Some of the recipes from my time traveling and living abroad, and the stories that go with them, appear on this website.

Spoon for AboutWhen the financial meltdown in the ’00s hit, and I found myself at the receiving end of yet another layoff from a major international bank, I decided it was time to pursue my passion for all things culinary.  In 2012, I enrolled in the International Culinary Center in New York City (formerly known as the French Culinary Institute), where I graduated with a Grand Diplôme with Distinction from their Honors Program (and made the Deans List, which I hadn’t done since middle school) in 2013.  Read about my culinary school experiences here.  I look forward to hearing from you and to working on a delicious project together.

Buon appetito!

Kathy Blake (aka The Experimental Gourmand)