Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Interview with Aimee

So, there is a group of friendly food bloggers who are going around tagging each other to be interviewed. I particularly enjoyed Gilly’s interview over at Humble Pie and piped up in a comment for her to interview me. I was thrilled to receive my five questions from the lovely Gillian and now you can read the full interview. As she had warned, the questions are quite personal, so you’ll be getting a glimpse into the inner workings of life around here!


Humble Pie: Can you tell us a bit more about your experiences in the professional cooking industry - What were you responsible for? What did you like best about it? Least about it?

UtHC: Well,I started working in restaurants when I was 17 and never looked back. Since then it was been a wild and wonderful ride that has taken me from a remote fly-in fishing camp on the BC coast where I was camp cook, all the way to Montreal’s fine dining scene, with plenty of bistros (and one year of cooking school) in between.
My three-year stint at Montreal’s Toque! Restaurant (at the time, it was the best in the city) certainly honed my cooking skills and further developed my palate. It left me with an insatiable desire to search out the best ingredients possible for my own personal cooking (often more of a pain in the neck than a blessing) and to accept nothing but the best from fine restaurants that charge the big bucks. It was also during this time that my family officially labeled me a food snob! LOL! I was chef du parti garde manger, basically responsible for all the entrees. I loved the accessibility to fine ingredients such as truffles, wild mushrooms and fresh seafood and the challenges the job brought, but it was very demanding on my home life and not a job I could pursue while raising a family.
I also worked for Montreal caterer, Philippe de Vienne, and loved every minute of it. I loved being a private chef, going into people’s homes with my mise en place, and cooking the food for these elaborate parties they threw. I met great people, saw some of Montreal’s finest homes, and was immensely proud of every plate I served.

Humble Pie: Montreal is one of my absolute favorite cities in all of Canada - in your opinion, what makes it so special and unique in regards to food and drink?

UtHC: How can I summarize? European influence; market-based cuisine; young up-and-coming chefs featuring Quebec-based products; bakeries and shops handed down from generation to generation offering the best of the old world; the rise of the low-priced-yet-gourmet bistro; Quebec’s incomparable cheeses, maple syrups, ice wines, seafood and game featured on menus around town; world class chefs who's creativity knows no limits; the fact that after living here for eight years I am still discovering great new places to eat; and of course, the heavy competition that drives restaurants to stand out in a city packed with memorable dining experiences.

Humble Pie: Walk us through a typical day in your household.

UtHC: Morning: French press coffee for me and apple juice for Noah as we kiss Dada goodbye. A leisurely breakfast, then a romp upstairs while we make the beds, get dressed and then head outside. We work in the garden, dig for worms, pick flowers, mow the lawn, swing, and play. Then back in the house, it’s story time, followed by a nap for Noah, while I fly around the place, waving my magic housewife wand to clean it and get a shower in if I am lucky.
Afternoon: Picnic lunch in the park with friends, then head over to the market for some inspiration for supper. Asparagus, strawberries and watermelon are all looking pretty good now. Back at home we play or bake something yummy with Noah standing on a chair being a big helper. After that, Noah goes down for another nap (still a 2-napper, yay!) and I brew a cup of tea, throw a load of laundry in, and sit down to catch up on emails, phone calls, blogging, and business. If I am lucky, I’ll get to play around with a new a recipe or two during this downtime. Supper is usually started by now and when Noah wakes up, we have an art or music lesson and play some more.
Supper is on the table as soon as Danny gets home, and the whole family sits down together.
Evening: We love walking after supper, and all too often find ourselves at the local ice cream shoppe! LOL!
Noah goes to bed early, giving us adults a nice long evening to kick back together.

Humble Pie: I've read about a couple of your traveling adventures - where all have you traveled? Is there anywhere you haven't been that you would like to go?

UtHC: Well, like you, I love to dream about far away places. I am interested in every part of the globe, (except maybe Las Vegas, I have no desire to ever go there) so you see, I still have a lot of traveling to do! My parents instilled the travel bug in my siblings and me when we were very young by taking us all to South America for a few months. Since ‘growing up’, I have traveled in Mexico, USA (including Alaska), France, Italy, Greece, Hungary, Austria, Turkey, Thailand, Malaysia, and Indonesia. I have also visited United Arab Emirates, Switzerland, Croatia, Slovenia, but haven’t spent enough time in those countries to count them as ones I have really seen. Danny and I plan to travel with our children someday...I think it's important to show them the world in all it's splendor--and suffering as well.This traveling family are my heros.

Humble Pie: Noah is an absolutely adorable little guy! If you could be certain that he would appreciate and enjoy ONE meal you made for him, what would you make?

UtHC: Thanks, Gilly! His current favorite is a bean and cheese burrito with sour cream and a side of guacamole. His aversions are mostly to meat now, and even if I were to sneak some shredded chicken into the burrito, his highly in-tune filtering system would make sure it was pushed out and into his bib.LOL.

Thanks, Gilly! I enjoyed your questions and now to the readers who want to be interviewed…read on!

DIRECTIONS FOR THE INTERVIEW MEME

1. Leave a comment saying, “Interview me.”
2. I will respond by emailing you five questions. Beware, I’m not shy of asking personal questions! Please make sure I have your email address.
3. You will update your blog with the answers to the questions.
4. You will include this explanation and offer to interview someone else in the same post.
5. When others comment asking to be interviewed, you will ask them five questions.

1 comment:

gilly said...

Hi Aimee! Great answers to my questions! Thank you for all of your insight into life in both your household and Montreal!

:)

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