As we continue celebrating Women's History Month in March, we teamed up with Kate from Cookie and Kate to reflect upon her personal experiences in the culinary industry. Kate champions healthy eating, primarily through "whole foods," presenting these ideas in powerful writing and breathtaking photography. Read below to discover the inspiration that led Kate to fall in love with cooking and bring a whole new meaning to nutritious foods.
"I have a few fond memories of cooking with my parents as a little girl,but my love for cooking took a good twenty years to develop. I was acreative kid but a picky eater, the daughter of an ambitious baby boomerwhose strengths shine more in business than the domestic realm. I can't credit my mother for instilling my interest in cooking, but I owe thanks to several other female role models for inspiring me to step into the kitchen.
I can, at least, attribute my health-conscious eating habits to my mom—she set a great example in that regard, and my desire to eat well was my main motivation to learn to cook. In college, she gave me a book on my Christmas list called "What to Eat" by Marion Nestle. Marion's straightforward, research-based information got me fired up about nutrition and started me on my path to real, whole foods.
After graduating from college and getting a job that allowed me to devote a few more dollars to my grocery budget, I started playing around in the kitchen with new-to-me ingredients. As young people tend to do, I turned to the internet for cooking resources. I discovered blogs like 101 Cookbooks, by Heidi Swanson, and Smitten Kitchen, by Deb Perelman. These women started blogging early, and they have a knack for presenting recipes in a straightforward, easygoing manner that I love. Their instructions and cooking methods showed me that I could make any number of dishes with the same basic set of ingredients, and their enthusiasm for learning by trial and error encouraged me to do the same.
My blog, unlike most food blogs, began as a creative project and evolved into a recipe blog as time went on. Photography had long been a hobby, and I got hooked on food photography the moment I snapped a photo of homemade salsa. My fellow food bloggers' work inspires me and makes me want to work harder at it. Bloggers like Ashley of Not Without Salt, Laura of The First Mess and Ashlae of Oh Ladycakes come to mind—their photos so artfully represent their unique cooking styles. I'm perpetually awed by professional photographers like Ditte Isager, whose photos capture food's essence with layers of depth, texture and light.
As a single young woman, I've found the process of learning to cook for myself and feed myself well incredibly rewarding. Liberating, even. I'm not sure I would have fallen in love with cooking if I felt pressured to meet high domestic standards. So to every woman who has elevated home cooking from obligation to art, and to every woman who told me that I could be whoever I want to be: thank you."
- Kate from Cookie and Kate
Photo Credit: Cookie and Kate
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