HI! I’M RENEE.
Editorial note: I never went to culinary school but I’m an amazing cook. Do I want to go to culinary school just so I can call myself a chef — absolutely not. I do however want to own my own Deli/Market — 609 Jefferson Market. Yeah, I’ve given it a lot of thought — it really isn’t a new dream but a continuation of something I started in 1991. At the deli I will serve L.O.V.E — local.organic.veggies.everyday. One day . . .
I started a food blog and thought for sure I would be famous but it didn’t quite work out like that. As it turns out I love to cook and take photos but I don’t like many other aspects to the business. I chose to continue to do what I love serving those closest to me and not worry so much about being famous.
What follows is part of my about page on the blog. If you are looking for simple, local, kid friendly, plant based food from a unschooled chef — I’m your person!
I love supporting my local farmers. It is in my DNA. My Polish grandparents were farmers. I grew up on a “working farm” within a Polish Catholic community. Helen and Sophie were my mentors in the kitchen. My Daddy and Stanley showed me how to pick mushrooms, respect the land and find joy in forging for food.
My brother Joe would often help his friend Bill get ready for the Farmers Market in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Bill is still an amazing farmer growing loads of veggies and beautiful flowers. There is something magical about cooking food grown by a friend.
As a micro-farmer I grow organic fruits and veggies and belong to 3 organic CSA’s (community sponsored agriculture).
Why three CSA’s? Well, one delivers! How awesome is that? The other two are about 5 miles from my house — my organic farms are closer to my house than the grocery store! This makes eating local and organic easy!
My dream is to have an organic farm (in Michigan) one day . . . until then I grow strawberries, asparagus, blueberries, raspberries, tomatoes, mint and this year I put in garlic. My secret: I only grow what I love to eat.
My motto is “just eat a salad.” I’m not asking for my family and friends to start requesting green smoothies or a fresh carrot/ginger juice. (that would be nice but . . . ) Can we just start with salad?
I believe in having a practice or “one seat” as the Zen-folks like to say. My suggestion is to eat local, organic, or veggies everyday. I would totally groove on adding a little yoga or meditation to the daily practice — but everyone needs to find what makes their heart sing.
When we honor our soul through our daily practices we become a free spirit and collectively we can change the world.
WHY DO I DO THIS?
Food is my passion. I’ve spent my life pouring my soul into the bowl as I cook for others — in my home, restaurants (too many to count!), delis, grocery stores, homeless shelters, bake sales, teacher luncheons…you get the idea.
My purpose is to nourish others with the gift I’ve been given.
I’m part Earth Mother, part hippie, part food activist. A geeky science girl who tells you what’s in your food and the sensible girl who offers you simple solutions.
SO WHAT SETS ME APART?
One word. Simplicity.
At Renee’s Kitchen, I’m all about simple changes made with intention.
I’m also the real deal. I’m a real mom cooking real meals for kids who aren’t all that excited about spinach and kale. I get it. Planning, preparing, trying new recipes can be a drag — but no worries, you have me!
I’ll do the cooking, testing, and planning. It is really what I love to do — playing in the kitchen, trying out new things and sharing the results (good and bad) with you. This totally streamlines your efforts to “just eat a ding dang salad.”
SOME FUN FACTS ABOUT ME:
I love figs and walnuts.
I have 4 kids and homeschool 1 of them.
With 4 kids in soccer we had 125 practices & 64 games between mid-August and mid-November. Think of all the laundry, water bottles and meal planning! (My kids aren’t all in soccer anymore but all of them are busy!)
I belong to a CSA that delivers to my front door. Hallelujah!
I’m sort of loud and have a way of explaining things so you won’t forget. I laugh a lot at myself because I do a lot of really whacky things and life is just too short to get your knickers in a twist.
Food is about eating and not being a famous food blogger.
Food Blogs aren’t always what they seem.
When you have lost the joy in something, it needs a tweak or just stop. I stopped food blogging but I still love everything about food.
When I keep the faith that one day I will have the deli/market . . . life seems better. Having a vision is so important.
“Mom can you please make that again?” that is what I’m working for now.