Jump to content


Photo

Backgrounds


  • Please log in to reply
68 replies to this topic

#21 Kristi

Kristi
  • Moderator
  • 2,042 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:NW Portland

Posted 28 November 2006 - 08:47 AM

What kind of work you do professionally?
I work for a major investment firm.

What got you interested in food?
I come from a family of great cooks (mom, dad, aunt, grandma) so I've been interested in food for as long as I can remember. Some of my fondest memories are of cooking with my grandma when I was a kid.

Have you worked in the industry, if so at what level?
I worked at Foothill Broiler and I did a little bussing at a fine dining restaurant.

Do you have any formal training or practical?
Nope. Most of what I learned was from being in the kitchen with my mom and grandma.

Do you consider yourself an able "chef" (like able to produce with good results much of what you eat in restaurants)?
Not really, I do OK in the kitchen. I have made some things at home that I've had in restaurants and while I've had good results, I would much rather have someone else cook for me.

How often do you get out to eat?
On average 1-2 times per week. With 2 kids, I don't eat out as much as I would like!

Were you born for food or do you have to work at what you like!
I definitely think I was born for food, it's in my genes. Dieting would be a whole lot easier if I wasn't, though!

#22 MaBell

MaBell
  • Members
  • 1,089 posts
  • Location:SE Portland

Posted 28 November 2006 - 10:56 PM

What kind of work you do professionally?

Market research

What got you interested in food?

I come from a family of cooks (and people who love to eat) on all sides of my family. I come from a family of Italians and Eastern European Jews and I grew up in the south. I like to think of my heritage as "chicken fried pizza bagel" :)

Have you worked in the industry, if so at what level?

I worked as a waitress in college and also did catering gigs. Later worked part time in a bagel shop.

Do you have any formal training or practical?
Nope. A couple of continuing ed classses and lots of trial & error.

Do you consider yourself an able "chef" (like able to produce with good results much of what you eat in restaurants)?

I am a pretty decent home cook. I love trying to recreate things I've had in restaurants (with varying degrees of sucess). I've definitely "eaten my mistakes".

How often do you get out to eat?
2-3 times per week on average.

Were you born for food or do you have to work at what you like!
I was born for food! I don't think I've ever missed a meal.
Homer: Are you saying you're never going to eat any animal again? What about bacon?
Lisa: No.
Homer: Ham?
Lisa: No.
Homer: Pork chops?
Lisa: Dad, those all come from the same animal.
Homer: Heh heh heh. Ooh, yeah, right, Lisa. A wonderful, magical animal.

#23 SarahWS

SarahWS
  • Moderator
  • 1,406 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:Hillsdale

Posted 28 November 2006 - 11:37 PM

What kind of work you do professionally?

software customizations for eye doctors

What got you interested in food?

Mom and Dad live for good food and wine. I don't drink, but I definitely got the food gene. When I was old enough, they took me out with them to eat.

Have you worked in the industry, if so at what level?
Lots and lots of dishwashing, all unpaid. Went to a school that required students to have chores and I enjoyed the dishwashing the most so I volunteered for it. Plus commercial dishwashers are SO much cooler than normal ones. Kitchen staff was some of the nicest people there and they taught me a lot about Hawaiian food. Also cleaned up, mopped floors, took out the trash, etc...

Do you have any formal training or practical?
Took 2 weeks of classes in my hometown from Portland chef Robert Reynolds to learn formal techniques. Otherwise, I learned under Mom who believes in taking full advantage of her children's free labor :)

Do you consider yourself an able "chef" (like able to produce with good results much of what you eat in restaurants)?

I don't do things that can really (physically) burn you after some bad experiences with candymaking. After a partial 2nd degree, I decided there was some things I would happily leave to the pros (frying, hot sugar, etc). I have definitely done enough of the "have the roast roll onto the floor" mistakes to feel like a veteran.

How often do you get out to eat?
5 times per week on average. Definitely too much as it's a very pricey habit. I'm trying to cut back, but I get lazy cooking for one and I hate not having a dishwasher.

Were you born for food or do you have to work at what you like!
When I was 3, I would only eat undefrosted frozen peas. Thanks to a lot of hard work by my mom and trying things I'm sure I'll hate, I've expanded my boundaries. It took awhile though...

#24 loofahgirl

loofahgirl
  • Members
  • 1,253 posts
  • Gender:Female

Posted 29 November 2006 - 08:25 AM

What kind of work you do professionally?
I'm a writer.

What got you interested in food?
My mother was a terrible cook. Dinner was usually some sort of gristly protein with Campbell's cream-of-whatever dumped atop it and shoved in the oven for too long. My grandmother, her mother, however, was excellent. I learned how to separate eggs at 4 years old. :) Now I'm just as interested in food science and food affecting our health as I am in the actual chowing down.

Have you worked in the industry, if so at what level?
Hostessing and bartending in high school and college. Will that be smoking or non?

Do you have any formal training or practical?
Self-taught--and I lose that term usely. :)

Do you consider yourself an able "chef" (like able to produce with good results much of what you eat in restaurants)?
Heh, check this week's WW and then tell me.

How often do you get out to eat?
Maybe once or twice a week?

Were you born for food or do you have to work at what you like!
Um. Who isn't born for food? I just genuinely don't like meat, so I don't eat it. It's not because of any politics, etc. I also don't like lima beans so I don't eat those. But baked good love comes all too easily...

#25 PDXWine

PDXWine
  • Members
  • 876 posts

Posted 29 November 2006 - 12:38 PM

What kind of work you do professionally?
Employee and managerial development and psychometric assessments. Pre-hire integrity, reliability and work ethic screening, specific psychological job fit, team building workshops and training, managerial skill and competency development, etc. It all comes down to happy, productive employees who stay rather than quitting because they're unhappy or getting fired because the company's displeased with their performance.

What got you interested in food?
It's in the family. We're Greek on my mom's side and my grandfather and two uncles were in the restaurant biz. Everyone cooks - it's genetic.

Have you worked in the industry, if so at what level?
Prep work as a kid - both in my uncles' restaurants and at the place up the street, catering, bartending, snack bar at a country club (grilling burgers, making sandwiches etc.).

Do you have any formal training or practical?
Self-taught with a lot of help from cooking my way (with my first wife) through Mastering volumes I and II. I've also assisted with hands-on classes at Sur la Table but had to retire due to a "job" related injury that wasn't covered by Workers Comp since I'm a volunteer.

Do you consider yourself an able "chef" (like able to produce with good results much of what you eat in restaurants)?
At times but mostly I consider myself to be an accomplished home cook.

How often do you get out to eat?
Very seldom. Since I live alone and am not dating anyone I don't get the point when it's just as fast and easy to whip up something at home - though it's usually simple and I don't do anything elaborate very often.

Were you born for food or do you have to work at what you like!
As my family says, we live to eat.

#26 chefken

chefken
  • Members
  • 32 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 29 November 2006 - 02:56 PM

What kind of work you do professionally?
Chef/Owner Ken's Place, LOW BBQ and Kenny & Zuke's

What got you interested in food?
Always loved food and grew up in NYC with a mother who was pretty good. Experimented with cooking a lot in college and needed a job when I graduated, so I started as a dishwasher in a French restaurant in Boston.

Have you worked in the industry, if so at what level?
30 years now and have done everything there is to do in the food business, and then some. Cooked, opened restaurants, closed restaurants, waited tables, dishwashed, writing, teaching, consulting, catering.

Do you have any formal training or practical?
Spent a year as the Head-Student Teacher at La Varenne in Paris. Got their Grande Diplome. Also coursework at L'Acadamie du Vin in Paris.

Do you consider yourself an able "chef" (like able to produce with good results much of what you eat in restaurants)?
I get by.

How often do you get out to eat?
Once a week, sometimes 2 or 3 if you include breakfast and lunch.

Were you born for food or do you have to work at what you like!
Born, and I'll be a very tasty meal for someone or some being, someday. Hopefully a Vegan. :)
signature

#27 Calabrese

Calabrese

    Desaparecido

  • Banned
  • 5,970 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Gone

Posted 29 November 2006 - 04:16 PM

What kind of work you do professionally?

computer geek/mid-level IT manager

What got you interested in food?

I think it was probably my Italian grandmother. She was a great cook and there was always interesting and different (for a kid used to the dregs of food/groceries in rural America in the 50s and 60s) food at her house.

My Anglo mother hates to cook and it shows. I used to cook or help cook for their guests from the time I was 10 or 11. Lots of kids were weirded out by the fact that at 13 I was grilling steaks for my dad's business guests at our lake place.

Have you worked in the industry, if so at what level?

Scooped ice cream and made shakes and sundaes one summer.

Several summers later I managed the ice cream shop which had also added a fried chicken outlet in the back which was also managed by me. I took over managing part way through the summer with the instructions to get the operation out of the red and back into the black. I did a bit better than getting it above break even by the end of the summer season so I met the goal given to me. I still hate maple walnut ice cream with a passion.

Do you have any formal training or practical?

I have no formal training per se. I watched a lot of cooking shows growing up. I faithfully followed Julia Child and Graham Kerr back when he was still a wino.

My biggest practical training was cooking dinner for 75 people when I was in college. Two of us did the menu, the shopping and the preparation. Granted it was an Italian meal but I had never cooked for more than 6 people before that day. We made a vegetarian sauce and a meat sauce, pasta (hard from a box) and salad, green beans, garlic bread, and cake. We had wine, water, and coffee for beverages. And the chefs got sauced during prep. Still the meal came out well.

Do you consider yourself an able "chef" (like able to produce with good results much of what you eat in restaurants)?

When I put the effort in, I am generally a good cook and I have a lot of understanding of how flavors play and how menus are constructed. I can have a dish at a restaurant and generally figure out how to make that dish. I don't really have that kind of time these days but I did when I was younger.

That said, I have had some failures. The most notable caused by arrogance. When I know the essence of a dish I will change the recipe. And this time I did not know the essence and tried to make a very bad substitution. I learned from it though.

And there was the failure that came from a nutso recipe. We just went out for fast food that night.

I also like coming up with recipes of my own. I think my best totally unique dish is Mango Lavendar Shrimp Pasta salad.

How often do you get out to eat?

Not counting cafeteria lunches at work, 2-3 times a week.

Were you born for food or do you have to work at what you like!

Born for food. I was a practice baby for a college class for home ec. (now called something else) at Cornell. There was a test for the babies at the end. The only question I "missed" was this. Tester tapped a spoon on a bowl and then handed me the spoon. Instead of tapping the bowl with the spoon ("correct response"), I aped eating out of the bowl with the spoon. I was about 9 months old at the time. My parents have never let me forget this story. I knew what silverware was for straight up and it's not for making noise.

#28 Twitch

Twitch
  • Members
  • 1,964 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:West coast best coast

Posted 21 December 2006 - 02:12 PM

What kind of work you do professionally?
I'm a hobo.

What got you interested in food?
My tastebuds!

Do you have any formal training or practical?
Nope.

Do you consider yourself an able "chef" (like able to produce with good results much of what you eat in restaurants)?
Yup. i can't keep everything in my fridge, however, so I go out alot :D

How often do you get out to eat?
Just about every weekday for lunch, maybe a couple of times a week for dinner.

Were you born for food or do you have to work at what you like!
I used to balance food and health, until I found myself with almost zero bodyfat at 123 lbs / 6 feet 1 inch.

#29 MojoMan

MojoMan
  • Members
  • 393 posts
  • Interests:Professional Beer Snob, All types of Cuisine and Cooking

Posted 08 January 2007 - 12:04 AM

"what kind of work you do professionally?"

I'm in the medical field......



"What got you interested in food?"

Italian Grandparents who were wondeful cooks...



"Have you worked in the industry, if so at what level?"

Lets see.... I've been a bus boy, a waiter, prep cook and cook at my families restaurant, a short order cook at a San Francisco diner, an assistent brewer, sold brewing equipment, worked in the beer biz and I think that's it....



"Do you have any formal training or practical?"

I was taught to cook by different family members. Part of my family owned a restaurant...



"Do you consider yourself an able "chef" (like able to produce with good results much of what you eat in restaurants)?"

I'm not a prrofessional Chef, but I can say I'm a pretty good amature.......



"How often do you get out to eat?"

1-2 times a week



"Were you born for food or do you have to work at what you like!"


Interesting question! Don't know where to go with this!!

I was born to eat and need to use both hands to shovel it in.....

#30 BaconLuv

BaconLuv
  • Members
  • 430 posts
  • Location:NE PDX
  • Interests:bacon, comfort food, vintage cocktails, karaoke

Posted 11 January 2007 - 07:48 PM

Maybe things like what kind of work you do professionally?
I work for a local nonprofit, doing fundraising, marketing, etc.

What got you interested in food?
Holiday dinners at my grandmas, and the smell of my mom cooking bacon for huge Sunday breakfasts

Have you worked in the industry, if so at what level?
My very first job was in the dining room of a retirement community. I served meals, dealt with the various special diets of seniors, bussed tables, and washed dishes. I've served enough prunes and prune juice to last a lifetime. :P Briefly I worked as a waitress and barback at an Applebee's.

Do you have any formal training or practical?
No

Do you consider yourself an able "chef" (like able to produce with good results much of what you eat in restaurants)?
Definitely not...I'm still very much learning, and never really expect to master restaurant-level dishes

How often do you get out to eat?
2-3 times a week

Were you born for food or do you have to work at what you like!
I'm not sure I can say either one of these. Born to eat, most definitely. My motto is, "Life's too short." That's why I don't focus too much on fat or caloric intake these days, but everything in moderation. But I want to enjoy myself while I'm here 'cause I'm not coming back!
The ironclad rule on music in any kitchen I control: NO Billy Joel, NO Grateful Dead. - Tony Bourdain

#31 overeducatedwaitress

overeducatedwaitress
  • Members
  • 157 posts
  • Location:NE PDX

Posted 24 January 2007 - 02:26 PM

Work
I own and manage Delivered Dish (www.d-dish.com), a restaurant delivery service in Portland.

What got you interested in food?
I had to learn to cook in self-defense--my parents' cooking varied from horrendous to vile.

Have you worked in the industry, if so at what level?
I waited tables at the same local bar/supper club in Indiana throughout my undergrad and graduate degrees. It was definitely not a culinary hot spot (Bar nachos, anyone?) when I started there, but they brought in a Real Live Trained Chef after I'd been there 5 or so years, and definitely improved the menu (added steamed clams, art hearts, some decent seafood dishes). I got excited by Mark's (that was the Real Live Chef) copy of La Gastronomique, and we'd plot soups and side dishes together when it was slow. At that point, I started doing pro bono caterings for some music fests and friends, and learned very quickly that I only love cooking when I do not HAVE to do it for anyone, or when it's not for 30+.

Do you have any formal training or practical?
Nothing formal--see above for the practical. I still adore the whole restaurant experience when done well, and service is almost as important to me as the meal because of my practical background.


Do you consider yourself an able "chef" (like able to produce with good results much of what you eat in restaurants)?

Depends on the day and the alignment of the stars. Some dishes turn out fabulously--my broiled lamb chops and braised kale are unforgettable--and some [ahem] are a strong throwback to my parents' style of cooking.

How often do you get out to eat?
Three-four times a week.

Were you born for food or do you have to work at what you like?
I was definitely born for the whole food experience, whether restaurant or in a private home--I find the cultural importance of food as a social and familial bonding element fascinating, and any natural born gracious host or hostess, chef or cook, server or bartender, a personal hero.
With strong ties to Wing Stop. < / end legal post-amble re: conflicts of interest >

#32 ExtraMSG

ExtraMSG
  • Admin
  • 18,340 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Felony Flats
  • Interests:Me like food.

Posted 24 January 2007 - 04:49 PM

Welcome, overeducatedwaitress.

The greatest service chemistry has rendered to alimentary science, is the discovery of osmazome, or rather the determination of what it was. ~Brillat-Savarin

Nick Zukin, Mi Mero Mole

Co-Author, Artisan Jewish Deli at Home

Formerly, Kenny & Zuke's


#33 Lesliewine

Lesliewine
  • Members
  • 50 posts

Posted 26 January 2007 - 06:18 PM

Work
My husband and I own Thirst Wine Bar & Bistro. I also work at Intel (Marketing Manager) and have a 1 year old and 3 year old (raising kids is work too!!)

What got you interested in food?
Cooking is relaxing for me. My mom is not a good cook, my maternal grandmother tried but only had a fewe signature dishes, however, my paternal grandmother was a gourmet cook. Unfortunately she passed away when I was 8 and I didnt get to cook with her much. I do like to think that the gene passed onto me...

Have you worked in the industry, if so at what level?
I started working in the industry at age 15. KFC (still love that stupid chicken!!) to tex mex, to fine dining seafood, to managing a high end bar in grad school. For years, every time I had a bad day in the corporate world, I thought about what I really enjoyed and it's food, wine, marketing and people. Hence the opening of Thirst.

Do you have any formal training or practical?
All practical, unless you count the sushi class I took at In Good Taste :w00t:


Do you consider yourself an able "chef" (like able to produce with good results much of what you eat in restaurants)
Yep. Wish I had more time to do it

How often do you get out to eat?
A lot! Nearly daily for lunch - and then a few times per week with the kids and I test all of the food at Thirst . Unfortunately my husband and I don't get out much together since one of us is always working...

Were you born for food or do you have to work at what you like?
Born for food and wine :)

#34 Cookie

Cookie
  • Members
  • 12 posts
  • Location:Portland

Posted 31 January 2007 - 07:28 PM

What kind of work you do professionally?

Retired. Trained as landscape architect. Worked as accountant and systems manager.

What got you interested in food?

When I was in college and moved out of the dorm, I had to start cooking for myself. I bought "Mastering the Art of French Cooking", decided it was good but too much work. I bought the James Beard Cookbook, and let JB teach me to cook. After that, numerous encounters with good food in fine restaurants and common cafes gave me something to work toward.

Have you worked in the industry, if so at what level?

Never

Do you have any formal training or practical?

Nope, just lots of good restaurant meals to inspire me.

Do you consider yourself an able "chef" (like able to produce with good results much of what you eat in restaurants)?

To me a chef is a professional, and I am definitely an amateur, but in my own kitchen at home, I turn out pretty tasty food consistently.

How often do you get out to eat?

No much, except when traveling. Food's too good at home.

Were you born for food or do you have to work at what you like!

I guess I was born for food. I don't use recipes much. I cook what I like to eat and if other people like it too, that's great.

#35 BCF

BCF
  • Banned
  • 25 posts

Posted 16 February 2007 - 07:26 PM

Since I am fairly new to the board I thought it would be fun to see what the background is of people who post here. If it has been covered before where the thread!

I am new too so here I go.....
Maybe things like what kind of work you do professionally?
I am in the restaurant business. I owned Henry Ford's Restaurant; I currently own Ford's on 5th, getting ready to open a second at The Civic, third at Bridgeport, and possibly one in Bend. I am currently looking for a location to open another fine dining steakhouse similar to Henry Ford's. GOD I MUST BE CRAZY!! <_<
What got you interested in food?
It's in my blood plus I love to eat and cook good food
Have you worked in the industry, if so at what level?
25 years in the industry. I have worked as a Dishwasher, Valet, all aspects of the Kitchen, banquets... you name it I may have done it.
Do you have any formal training or practical?
I did some training at CIA (6mo just after high school) decided it wasn't for me so I finished school at U of O then learned the restaurant business from my Father.
Do you consider yourself an able "chef" (like able to produce with good results much of what you eat in restaurants)?
I guess; I love to cook. I Like creating new dishes, trying new recipes. I love having friends over at my house and entertaining. I enjoy cooking with others and throwing different ideas back and forth. I have been fortunate to have been in the kitchen with some notable and outstanding people. I do wish I was a better pastry maker though. I think the artistry of a good pastry chef is fantastic. I really suck at it.
How often do you get out to eat?
4-5 times per week, in and out of town. Last Saturday my girlfriend (who is Chinese)and I decided to get some great Chinese food so we went to Vancouver Canada we ate and came back.
Were you born for food or do you have to work at what you like!
I was born for it, Good food and good wine, oh yeah can't leave out the Scotch and cigars either hehehe!!! :D

#36 Plump_and_Juicy

Plump_and_Juicy
  • Members
  • 2,080 posts

Posted 17 February 2007 - 08:52 AM

Welcome to Portland Food Group, BCF.

#37 BCF

BCF
  • Banned
  • 25 posts

Posted 17 February 2007 - 10:35 AM

Welcome to Portland Food Group, BCF.

Thank You...

#38 crabbymac

crabbymac
  • Members
  • 13 posts
  • Location:mostly Sisters, sometimes PDX
  • Interests:fly fishing, photography, cooking

Posted 21 February 2007 - 12:36 PM

Just signed up today. Here's a bit about me:

Maybe things like what kind of work you do professionally?

Interviewing for work as an equity trader in Portland. I did that through my 20s and into my early 30s in far flung places like NYC and London. Been out of the business since 2001. Brief interlude in Real Estate but really didn't like chasing friends and friends of friends for business.

What got you interested in food?

Grew up in SF with a mother who worked in the wine industry. She's a fine cook. My old job involved a lot of client dinners in big cities. I was exposed to some very good food through that. When I left London in 2001, I spent a few months in Italy and France. Took a few week long cooking classes (yuppie stuff, but fun and eye opening). Then rented a place in Nice right by the huge outdoor market and started cooking. Hard to screw up those ingredients! Since then, I've been learning what I can and practicing a lot on unsuspecting friends.

Have you worked in the industry, if so at what level?

Bus Boy at Clyde's in D.C. in 1991. Brief period as the bookkeeper for a restaurant in Nantucket.(I was unqualified, but the boss liked to party it up through the summer months and figured a seven dollar an hour college kid would do just fine in that role.

Do you have any formal training or practical?


Nothing formal, other than a class here and there.

Do you consider yourself an able "chef" (like able to produce with good results much of what you eat in restaurants)?


Sometimes I surprise myself and others. But no way am I consistent enough, fast enough, or neat enough to consider myself a chef. I like to have fun, experiment, learn, and mess up the kitchen.

How often do you get out to eat?

It depends. My girlfriend lives in PDX and I'm in Sisters. When I'm back there, I'd say a couple dinners and a couple lunches a week. Mostly moderately prices places, a lot of Mexican and Thai. A few times a year we get out to a fancy spot. When I'm in Sisters, it's just me, my Traeger, and home cooked meals.

Were you born for food or do you have to work at what you like!

Definitely born for food. I do have a few things I'm not so fond of, and every few years I'll try them again, so I suppose I do work at some things. But the list is short. I like all ends of the scale and all cuisines and think the world is a better place when good food is close at hand.

Mac

#39 Amanda

Amanda
  • Moderator
  • 7,624 posts
  • Location:NE Portland
  • Interests:Eating, cooking, kayaking, canoeing, letterboxing

Posted 21 February 2007 - 01:17 PM

Welcome to the site crabbymac!

Best regards,

Amanda

#40 jcoll4

jcoll4
  • Members
  • 121 posts

Posted 29 March 2007 - 01:41 PM

been lurking and posting once in a while so I thought I'd put something here.

Maybe things like what kind of work you do professionally?
Hotshot Oracle Database Administrator.

What got you interested in food?
My mother’s cooking sucked. Was told either “eat what I cook or make it yourself” started making it myself at age 8 with stovetop mac and cheese, not from a box you know. Grandfather was a rancher and taught me how to grill lamb. Moved on from there. Fateful meeting with John Gorham in Eugene in the early 90s sealed my fate as a foodie.

Have you worked in the industry, if so at what level?
Pizza driver, line cook at the sizzler. I still use the knowledge that I picked up at the sizzler every time I cook. Mostly about residual heat finishing food and what meat feels like at different stages of done.

Do you have any formal training or practical?
Voracious reader of cookbooks. Read many more recipes than I ever cook. Reading cookbooks helps me internalize food relations and chemistry.


Do you consider yourself an able "chef" (like able to produce with good results much of what you eat in restaurants)?

I can follow a recipe very well and am a good scratch cook. I only admire high end restaurants that can produce food which I cannot make at home. Food that I cannot figure out. Being an able home cook is mostly about recipes and having a few internalize methods. I wrote some stuff about it on the internet. Here’s a link about pasta and sauce

http://www.everythin...node_id=1302860


How often do you get out to eat?

Couple times a month. I am waiting for afghan kabob to arrive in Portland.


Were you born for food or do you have to work at what you like!

Work on it. Food is chemistry and chemistry takes work and intuition. I try to cook at home several times a week.
All I did is say I eggs in a vegan dish..