Chef Monika

Never Trust a Skinny Chef

Jul 27

Never Trust a Skinny Chef. How many times have you heard this one? Well I think it’s nonsense. I can’t tell you how frequently guests jokingly say this to me and I always chuckle but in the back of my mind think the stereotype is extraordinarily ridiculous. Historically speaking, yes, there were a lot of […]

Monika The Energizer Bunny

May 12

I have often been called Monika the energizer bunny because I have a tendency to keep going and going and going. After my recent brief hiatus while recovering from surgery I realized what a difficult time I have staying put and doing nothing. Not that I’m an overachiever, I just get bored really easily. A […]

Lucy and Ethel’s European Vacation on a Plate

Apr 22

For those of you who have been following the continuing escapades of our cooking classes at Hy-Vee, you have likely attended one of our Lucy and Ethel themed cooking classes. Last week we did another one titled “Lucy and Ethel’s European Vacation on a Plate.” This was the last of my classes at Hy-Vee and […]

If Jeff Won the Masters Championship What Would He Eat?

Apr 8

If Jeff won the Masters Championship what would he eat? That’s a big IF since he isn’t a professional golfer, although he LOVES golf. It is his favorite hobby and he lives for the big tournament weeks when the TV is glued to the Golf Channel for nonstop coverage. Today is the annual Champions dinner […]

Happy Birthday Celine Dion!

Mar 30

I’m going to start this blog by saying that since I am subjecting you all to an entire blog post about Celine Dion, there are a ton of recipes as an added bonus/consolation prize for your patience and readership. So without further ado, happy birthday Celine Dion! What does this have to do with the […]

Spring Has Sprung!!!

Mar 20

Happy first day of spring!!! While I cannot say that spring has sprung quite yet with the long winter we have been having, I sure am anticipating some of the first bounty of the spring. Some of my favorite vegetables come with this season. Here are a few of them and a few suggestions on […]

Snowy Days and Wednesdays Always Get Me Down

Mar 12

Snowy days and Wednesdays always get me down. And by get me down, I mean I like to get down. Me, my tunes, cooking up a storm. Why be blue when you can have fun in the kitchen. If this endless winter is getting you down, take a look. I promise it’ll cheer you up. […]

Culinary School Does Not A Teacher Make

Aug 13

Recently I had someone ask me when I felt comfortable teaching since I didn’t go to culinary school. It was an innocent question, not intended maliciously, but yet, the question perturbed me. The notion being that getting a formal education necessarily precedes the ability to teach a subject or that the completion of a degree […]

Messing Around

Mar 17

I am often asked by guests staying or dining with us if specific recipes are in my cookbook and often my answer is “kind of.” Not a good answer I suppose but an honest one. I view recipes as guidelines that can be deviated from and played with. So I usually get a basic recipe […]