Q & A With Cooking Instructor Kim
What was your first food memory?
As a teenager, I worked in a wine & cheese store in Atlanta handing out samples of every sort of tangy, nutty, smoky, sharp, funky, silky exotic cheese imaginable from all parts of the World. I suspect that’s where my love of travel was born. Global citizen and explorer of culinary wonders, yup that’s when it started.
How did you learn to cook?
I learned to cook in a professional kitchen from two wild and crazy Swiss guys…actually Heinz and Roland were brothers whose family had been in the restaurant business continuously for 300 years in Thun, Switzerland. During the early 1980’s in Atlanta, I went to work for the Schwab’s as an apprentice in their cooking school (Truffles Too) and later as chef in their restaurant (Hedgerose Heights Inn) where precision was the name of the game. I’m forever grateful for the rigorous start in cooking that they conferred upon me.
Do you prefer cooking or baking? Why?
Cooking hands down! For me it allows for more creative expression, in the moment add-lib, use of in-pantry, on-hand ingredients and liberation from the exacting measurements most baking recipes require to be successful.
What are three ingredients that you always have in your kitchen?
Ghee (clarified butter), Sea Salt & VINO (wine)!
Where do you find your cooking inspiration?
Farmers markets, favorite chefs & restaurant menus.
What is it that you love most about cooking?
Cooking is a multi-sensory whole body experience, I love the PROCESS! From beginning to end~ every sense is enlivened! Visioning the meal, thinking of ingredients, smelling, touching and purchasing them. Washing, prepping, chopping and seasoning them. Raw, cooked, blended, pureed, sautéed…each approach optimizing the nutrition within. Last but not least, artful plating of the food and enjoying the essence of goodness with family and friends. That’s what I love most about cooking!
What are the three cooking items/ gadgets that you could not live without?
If we are talking about not being able to really live without…like survival, well that tool for sure would be my chef’s knife! A top-notch sauté pan and Dutch oven would round out the top three cut.
What do you make for your family on a lazy Sunday?
Chop time is mindfulness based stress reduction in my world. I do a lot of my prep on Sunday for the coming week. Typically some wonderfully aromatic concoction of a meal arises from the buzz & hum of this meditative time spent in the kitchen. It’s rarely the same meal. Unlike my childhood, whereby my saint of a mother (whose job it was to put a solid meal on the table for eight people every day) claimed a mantra of ease and predictability. Sayonara Sunday night London broil!
What do you love most about being an instructor at Whisk?
With a strong teacher archetype and wanna-be standup comedian shadow self, Whisk provides an intimate stage for me to entertain and educate folks in my community about a topic I am intuitive and skilled at.
If you won a $1000 shopping spree at Whisk, how would you spend it?
I would introduce 3 young people to Whisk…“kids” that are passionate about food and culinary arts. I would gift each of them with the most essential tool in the kitchen…a chef’s knife of their choice. Then I would gift myself with a shiny new one! And if with any leftover funds maybe select the largest capacity Dutch oven available to add to my collection.
What’s your favorite locally “made” food item?
Wow, that’s a toss-up between oysters and wine!! Thanks to Mother Nature NC is flush with fresh coastal seafood and acres of vineyards. Exceptional and underrated wines and hard ciders from the Yadkin Valley combined with wild brackish Stump Sound or Outer Banks oysters…my favorite winning combination!