It all started from this, The Martha Stewart Cookbook.
When I was in college in the United States, I became crazy about cooking thanks to Martha Stewart. I repeatedly cooked the recipes from the book. I was living New Orleans at the time and I began hanging out with foodies. We started testing many recipes and eating out together at various restaurants.
It was around this time that I began dreaming of going to a culinary school someday. My Taiwan-born boyfriend, now husband, was living in San Francisco so I relocated to be with him after finishing college. San Francisco was an amazing gourmet paradise and most importantly, the birth place of the organic food movement.
I never could have imagined; the city was full of some of the world’s most unique eating places. Dim sum restaurants just as authentic as eating in Hong Kong. And I can’t forget the Burmese restaurant we used to go in the city, offering an amazing mix of flavors that I had never tasted. I really did not expect that my dream of going to a culinary school was about to happen in this new city.
I found an exciting culinary school the moment I started researching. The founder of the school was Mary Risley, and I recalled seeing her on Martha Stewart’s cooking show, which confirmed that I wasn’t making a mistake going there. The school was very intimate and offered a professional culinary program as well as many international cooking classes.
The school provided the opportunity to visit wineries in Sonoma and Napa, and cheese makers in the Bay Area. Popular restaurants’ chefs came to do lectures and share their invaluable knowledge with us as well. I had amazing experiences cooking at the school every day. I’ll never forget discovering and learning French sauces, confit, and pastries. French cooking made a great impression on me!
After finishing culinary school, my professional cooking journey began... Working in a French restaurant was so much fun. I was making loads of foie gras, terrines and soufflés every day, and slicing up beautiful giant truffles. I was surrounded by abundance of French ingredients and tasted so many amazing flavors.
When the restaurant was open, I was responsible for making and plating desserts. So, I plated desserts all night in that crazy fast-paced environment. I don’t remember how many times I was requested to write, “Will you marry me?” on a white plate with a chocolate pen and hide a huge diamond ring in the middle of a dessert! I truly enjoyed working in a real professional kitchen. Almost every night, customers came to see our beautiful marble wall with copper pots displayed in the kitchen. I was truly convinced that cooking was something that could endlessly interests me and it was something I wanted to keep learning for the rest of my life.
After San Francisco we moved to Tokyo and I found a company that I wanted to work for. The company was an exclusive distributor of Bamix, the top-selling hand mixer invented over 60 years ago in Switzerland. The company's CEO was a 70-year-old woman and I thought I could definitely learn something from her. She has an amazing talent and insight for choosing quality and well-designed products. I have learned so much about how to act and speak in front of people comfortably and I found myself having so much fun sharing the advantages of the products and my knowledge as a cooking teacher.
I also learned that a lot of people are interested in healthy cooking, but they do not have much time to spend in the kitchen! I completely understand that myself. So many “fast and easy” recipes call for some type of instant ingredients, but if you have a functional cooking tools, you don’t have to give up on all natural ingredients! I had never gone this far learning about “tools”, but its has absolutely changed my way of cooking.
Tokyo Cooking Studio has three missions in our service:
- First, we teach real cooking: using seasonal vegetables, good seasonings with fewer additives, and no microwaving! We want our students to gain foundational knowledge of cooking.
- Secondly, we teach smart cooking! We live in a fast paced era, so we can’t spend all day in kitchen, but we do not want to give up our fresh ingredients for ”fast ingredients”. So, in our classes, we use smart cooking gadgets; food processors, handy mixers, blenders, ice-cream makers and more. Students can expect to learn how to use them wisely for their style of cooking.
- Lastly, but most importantly, our cooking classes must be fun and full of excitement!
Tokyo Cooking Studio offers cross cultural culinary experiences that teach people to taste life!