Profile of a Chef - Rochelle Taylor

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Profile of a Chef - Rochelle Taylor - as part of the expert series by GeoBeats. My name is Rochelle Taylor. I am the Resident Chef here at Sur La Table in Newport Beach. That means that I help run the cooking class program. We have hands-on cooking classes here on a daily basis and I teach the classes and I help run the administrative side of the program. How did you get int cooking? I actually was a late bloomer, I am a career changer. I did not go to culinary school until I was in my late 20s. I used to cook as a stress-reliever and so I decided to start getting paid to do it. What do you like about cooking? I love eating, but also, I like seeing people’s reaction when they eat that perfect bite of food and how happy it makes them when they eat that wonderful thing, and how much of a part of everyone’s life it is. When you celebrate anything you have a good meal. When you are sad, you eat food to make you feel better. It is such an integral part of life that I just enjoy watching people and their reactions to food. Where do you find your inspiration? I do not know where I find my inspiration per say. Usually I just kind of walk the grocery store aisle until I find something that looks tasty that day. Usually I find my inspiration from pig. Pork is my favorite animal ever—to eat. We even have a sign in our office it says “When in doubt, put pig in it.” I am kind of known as the bacon person around here. Usually people, when in doubt for gift buying purposes, find me something bacon-related. What are the new cooking trends? A lot of the new cooking trends—a lot of people are dubbing them much like astronomy. That is a very big thing right now. Of course, the molecular astronomers of the world hate that term. But a lot of it is just new and innovative ways of creating flavors. Powdered things that are not normally powdered—that is a very big cooking trend right now. Also Swede has been a big trend for a while. We are also finding that pies are a very big dessert trend right now—pies and macaroons. The French cookie is a very, very big trend in the dessert world right now.

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