I worked in the food industry for five years. It was a love and hate relationship, but one that was core to who I am today. I’ll never forget many of the friendships and moments I had working my way through dishwasher jobs, manager roles, and the in-between. Similarly, grueling twelve hour days, failed dishes, and disappointed bosses shaped my passion for a tough work ethic and my drive to succeed. My love for cooking persists, and although I’m not a professional chef, I enjoy adding my own twists and flair to the daily recipes I cook.

Below are a few recipes. Most are combinations of recipes I’ve cooked from online blogs, books, and friends; along with some modification on my end. They won’t change the culinary world or anything, but they are some of my favorites. This isn’t a cookbook, so I won’t give perfect amounts or cook times. The goal is to inspire creativity, which I think is crucial to developing your own tastes.


Warm Mix:

  • caramelize a small white onion, near the end of cooking, add a few cloves minced garlic and a small minced shallot, salt and pepper as required

Cold Mix:

  • quarter yellow and red cherry tomatoes, mix with some minced sundried tomatoes, cut up basil leaves, and a touch of olive oil
  • combine warm and cold mixes to form a final product


  • combine a cup or so of balsamic vinegar, four tablespoons of honey, and two tablespoons of brown sugar
  • let the mix come to a bubble, and then simmer for 10-15 minutes until reduced to a glaze


  • serve on a piece of thick toasted bread, a good choice is rosemary ciabatta or a classic baguette
  • lay down a thin layer of mozzarella, a generous spoon of the mix, and a slight drizzle of the balsamic glaze