Togetherness, Not Technique...


Photos: Allison Faye Young

"To Create Community Through the Preparing, and Sharing, of Food." I think I've found my mission statement, at long last...

My inspiration for the structure of my cooking classes is completely inspired by my time in The Abbey Kitchen on Iona. When I arrived I was basically handed a recipe and trusted to jump right into the team. There really was never the feeling of a hierarchy, though we were all completely aware of who was in charge and who had more experience. We prepared the meals, with help from the guests, who would come and chop veg in the mornings. Then the housekeepers would ring the bell and deliver the fruits of our collaborative effort to the tables. We would all take our seats together, along with the guests...who would, in turn, serve us all. It was a team effort and a continual community building exercise. I completely fell in love with it, and easily became used to it. Unfortunately the "real" world rarely operates this way.

I don't know how good a business model my opening quote can build, but that has always been the idea at the core of everything. I've come full circle, back to my Iona roots and inspiration...only in Shreveport Louisiana. I recently gave my first official, ticketed, class here in Shreveport at Bella Nonnas Olive Oil & Vinegar Tasting Bar. Despite a few hiccups on my part, everyone seemed to enjoy working together and sharing the products of their efforts. I look forward to the next time! I hope I can continue to develop my classes in such a way that reflects my Iona education.

XO