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My gift to you

Dec 2016: Here is my gift to you for this Holiday season—a green and red easy-to-assemble hors d óeurve!

 Holidays

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Should It Be Called Food Waste, Food Rescue or Food Recovery?

May 2016: It doesn’t matter—what does matter is that for almost 30 years the Volunteers of Food Runners have been picking up excess food in San Francisco and getting it to people serving people in need. If you are an active part of this organization, THANK YOU!

 Food in General

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The Truth About Chicken

Aug 2015: First of all, thank you so much for all your notes and good wishes on learning that I closed Tante Marie’s Cooking School. I am very happy that Parties That Cook took over the space on Francisco St. and is now offering team-building cooking classes there. Also, I am really really happy to be back teaching evening and weekend cooking classes in my home kitchen on Broderick Street. Do check out my fall classes on www.tantemarie.com and sign up there to receive these Newsletter in the future if you don’t already get them. Thanks so much for all the great years of fun in the kitchen.

 Food in General

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The New Food Movement

Jun 2015: Okay, so Julia Child brought us French cooking in the 70’s; and Alice Waters has been an amazing inspiration to farmers, food producers, and cooks ever since; but even more important—in my opinion—is the current ground swell of passion about saving our country from the ravages of industrialized farming. Young people are advocating in many ways; including, documentaries about wasted food; hosting conferences about recovering edible food; and lots of online organizing about saving our farmlands, our resources—specifically water and oil—and preserving the earth; restoring jobs; and more important providing healthy wholesome food for Americans.

 Food in General

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Welcome to Spring!

Apr 2015: As March is almost over and April is coming quickly, many of us have masses of Meyer lemons still in our gardens. Here for you again a simple and delicious recipe you can make with you kids (store-bought lemons are fine too).

 Food in General

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Happy Valentines Day from Tante Marie

Feb 2015: You know, I have only one Recipe I truly love at this time of year!  Here, for you is my video of Valentine’s Shortbread Hearts. 

 Holidays

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Happy New Year From Tante Marie’s Kitchen!

Jan 2015: Everyone is asking me “how’s life after Tante Marie’s?” And, the truth is “I am having a blast!” I love teaching out of my house again! And the proceeds are going to Food Runners, which is even better!

 Holidays

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Merry Christmas from Tante Marie!

Dec 2014: A very Merry Christmas to you from Tante Marie! Isn’t it fantastic that cooking good food with good quality ingredients is getting more and more popular? The markets are filled with sustainable locally grown and seasonal foods; and EVERYONE is talking about the cooking shows on television; the cooking lessons on YouTube; and the new and interesting specialty stores. Don’t forget a good resource of Recipes and Videos is www.tantemarie.com. And, that Cooking is Fun!

 Holidays

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How to be a good house guest!

Oct 2014: Hi Food Lovers and followers of Tante Marie’s! I am thrilled to announce that I am now back where I started 40 years ago—teaching in my home—and loving it! I am also excited to announce our updated website; please check it out and tell your friends – and I am back sending cooking advice in the hopes that you will cook with confidence and have fun!

 Food in General

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How long does food last?

May 2014: The truth is that most food keeps far longer than we think! Here’s what good cooks do—if they don’t grow the food themselves; they shop once – maybe twice – a week for fresh ingredients. If you go early in the mornings you will see so many great cooks buying fresh ingredients in the local farmers markets. Then, they cook during the week with what they have on hand; and save the excess to turn into another dish later in the week.

 Food in General

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Cooking in Morocco!

Mar 2014: For years, Jessica, Heidi, and I have been talking about learning to cook in Morocco; and finally, we went in January this year! It was a very special trip! Altogether there were seven of us – all women and all lovers of good food--who met in Paris for a couple of nights and then spent five days at a private villa outside Marrakesh. Even though it was the off-season and rather chilly, we had tons of fun seeing the countryside; going to the markets; and learning to cook in people’s homes. Here, for you are some of the things I learned.

 Travel Notes

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The Truth About Organic

Sep 2013: Aren’t you getting tired of all the talk about organic? Last week the media was full of news about a report by Stanford analyzing 75 research reports on whether or not there is more nutritional value in organic foods. How silly!

 Food in General

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Cooking for Health

Sep 2013: Now is the time for educated Americans to STOP denying ourselves certain foods and rather START adding foods to our every day diet. Here are the facts: America is one of the richest countries in the world; most of us are making choices every day about what to eat - not worrying that we won't have enough to eat or to feed our children - we are very, very fortunate and yet we worry so much. Why then are we obsessing about not eating this or not eating that?

 Food in General

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How to Give a Party

Jul 2013: The most important thing about entertaining is to make the guests feel comfortable; it is they that should shine—not you. And, the best way to make them feel comfortable is to let them know what to expect. For instance, when inviting people, let them know the theme, if there is one; for instance, a western BBQ; or a Margarita Party; or a casual luncheon in the garden.

 Food in General

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Favorite San Francisco Restaurants

Apr 2013: For over 30 years the International Association of Culinary Professionals has been having annual conferences in various cities around the United States; and this year it was in San Francisco. My friends and I are now think of ourselves as the “old timers”of this organization; but we still have great fun going out to dinner every night and seeing our friends! So, where did I take Darina from Ireland; Paula from Dallas; and Nina from Boston?

 Where to Eat in San Francisco

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Cooking is Hot!

Mar 2013: Hi Everyone, Thank you all for such wonderful responses to my last Newsletter--Where are they Now? The responses were so heartfelt and grateful, I thought you would like to read three of them from past students. It is truly a reminder how important people's culinary education at Tante Marie's was so many years later. Gratefully, Mary Risley, Tante Marie.

 Cooking Careers

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Where are they now?

Feb 2013: Now that we are in our 34th year of teaching students to be professional cooks and bakers, I thought it would be fun to write this month’s Newsletters about some recent graduates of Tante Marie’s Cooking School in San Francisco. Often the people who invest the time and money to come to one of our Professional Programs don’t really know what they want to do with their career. They are often in a transition from a previous career; or moving to or from San Francisco; or in the midst other life changes like marriage and/or parenting. Nevertheless, they almost always say the six months spent learning to cook at Tante Marie’s was the best six months of their life.

 Cooking Careers

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Now is the time to go to Burma (Myanmar)

Dec 2012: The scenery is spectacular, the people are sweet; but, what about the food? the local food for travellers is just developing! I was very fortunate to go with my friends, Nina and Don, on a pretty standard two-week tour that Nina arranged. All I had to do was show up!

 Travel Notes

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Now is the Time to Enroll in Cooking School

Aug 2012: Are you between jobs? Have you gone as far as you can in your current job? Is it time to go back to work? And, to work in a field that holds your interest? Well, Tante Marie’s has the solution.

 Cooking Careers

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The Truth About Salmon

Jun 2012: Fresh salmon is one of the most wonderful foods to cook and to eat - it is full of flavor and very versatile. However, it is not local, sustainable, and line-caught year-round.

 Food in General

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The Truth About Meat

May 2012: There is so much being written about eating meat, that I thought I would give a brief summary of my thoughts. What we know is that most educated people in America eat too much meat and not enough fruits and vegetables. Yes, but what kind of meat should we buy and cook?

 Food in General

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Chuck Williams is my Hero!

Mar 2012: Every cook in America (and Canada) owes a deep sense of gratitude to Chuck Williams! It was he who brought us good French copper pots; it was he who brought us good French porcelain; it was he who brought us KitchenAid mixers for the home; it was he who brought us LeCreuset; and so much more good cooking equipment. Here is my interpretation of the history of Williams-Sonoma—mostly pieced together from what Chuck, himself, told me over the years.

 Food in General

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What Does it Take to Be a Good Home Cook?

Feb 2012: It's totally amazing that since the discovery of fire, people around the world have been heating food to make it more edible and appealing; and yet there is a whole generation that thinks cooking food is a great mystery. It's really pretty simple if you understand a few principles.

 Cooking Careers

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What Does It Take To Be A Cooking Teacher?

Jan 2012: The most important thing about teaching cooking is being open and honest with everyone and having a love of sharing your knowledge and expertise. You need to also be somewhat of a showoff - someone who likes to be center of attention from time to time; and, you need to be a people person - someone who can be encouraging to absolutely everyone. It is also very important that you keep coming up with new techniques and new recipes to teach so that students will continue to be inspired by you.

 Cooking Careers

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My Christmas Gift to You!

Dec 2011: Wow – the holidays are here and its time to celebrate; well, my gift to you is to show and tell you how to plan and present an elegant dinner party for six to twelve people. Remember, cooking is fun, and cooking for others is even more fun—all you need are a few hints to build your confidence.

 Holidays

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What does it take to be a Pastry Chef?

Nov 2011: The answer from Amanda Michael the Chef/Owner of JANE is “be prepared to work really hard!” Amanda was my student in the Full-Time Culinary Course at Tante Marie’s about twenty years ago. From there, she went on to work at the Ritz-Carlton in San Francisco making pastries. She has had jobs making breads and desserts in a restaurant in Lake Tahoe, as the pastry chef of Plump Jack in Squaw Valley, and worked for Plump Jack and Balboa Café in San Francisco before stopping work to have her two beautiful children. She is a very talented and dedicated Pastry Chef, and about a year ago she opened her own bakery/café/restaurant called JANE on Fillmore Street (between California and Sacramento Streets).. I am very proud of her!

 Cooking Careers

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Thanksgiving – Quick and Easy

Nov 2011: There is so much information about cooking Thanksgiving dinner that it is hard to figure out how to actually make it happen. So, here for you is a summary of what I plan to do this year. I have 12 to 14 people coming around 2 p.m. to help make dinner which is planned for about 4 p.m. When the participants ask "What can I bring?", I say how about a bottle of wine and an autumn pie. When they ask for specifics, I ask for French champagne, chardonnay, or pinot noir as the wine choices; and pumpkin (or sweet potato), pecan, or apple as the pie choices.

 Holidays

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What does it take to be a Chef?

Sep 2011: Almost everyone in the restaurant business will answer "Passion"! Cooking for a living is hard work; however, for the right kind of person, it can be very fun and rewarding. Working in a restaurant kitchen is best for people who like to be active, who can keep track of many details at once, and who love to keep up on what's happening in the food and cooking scene. Not only are chefs and cooks making hopefully delicious food for people who love to eat, but they are cooking with other like-minded people in solid teamwork; and sometimes get to participate in events with others in such activities as last weeks street fair in the Mission or this weekend's Chez Panisse celebrations.

 Cooking Careers

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Provence – Inspired Dinner Outdoors

Jul 2011: Let's pretend that it is the middle of summer and you would like to entertain guests in a casual manner outdoors on a warm summer evening! This is exactly what I did in the south of France for the week of June twenty-fifth for my 70th birthday. I am very fortunate that after almost 40 years of teaching cooking, I have lots of friends who want to help me celebrate my big birthdays in some romantic place. The truth is that I am very good at letting everyone else do the work. There are always people who are great at setting the table, organizing the cooking, and doing all the clean-up. And, I am really good at sitting around drinking rosè. Thank you everyone for a fabulous time!

 Travel Notes

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Where to Eat in San Francisco (Updated)

Jun 2011: Or, a better title would be “Where to take Darina Allen, from Ireland, on a whirlwind tour of Restaurants in the Bay Area? Darina is famous in her native Ireland for teaching literally thousands of people how to cook in her Ballymaloe Cookery School in county Cork or through her many cookbooks, many television shows or through her many articles in magazines and newspapers. She has unbelievable energy and wants to spend every minute of her visit here learning about the food trends.

 Where to Eat in San Francisco

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The New SF Food Scene

May 2011: There is a whole new generation of cooks! While in the early 70's so many of us were teaching ourselves how to cook by reading cookbooks, the new generation is also teaching themselves how to cook; but, this time it's with a consciousness of where food comes from and how it nourishes the body and soul. They are also cooking and serving food to the public in unusual locations.

 Where to Eat in San Francisco

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Chef Giuliano Bugialli

Mar 2011: The reason I admire him the most of all the traveling cooking teachers is that he always teaches original recipes. What he does is learn new recipes every year in his native Tuscany, teaches them at various cooking schools around the country, and then usually publishes them in a beautiful big cookbook with magnificent pictures.

 Food in General

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I Can’t Get Enough of My Meyer Lemon Tree!

Feb 2011: by Margaret Hemley, Cooking Teacher at Tante Marie's It is bursting with the soft, pale yellow, sweet lemons. Their juice and zest find their way into pudding, tagine, lentil soup, beurre blanc and vinaigrettes. I always seem to have a half a Meyer lemon sitting on the counter waiting to be squeezed onto a resting hangar steak or in a glass of bubbly water. It's vibrant, sweet-tart juice and zest brighten many a dish in my winter kitchen.

 Food in General

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London Is Cool Too!

Dec 2010: We think we are so cool in the San Francisco Bay Area with our farmers markets, our private restaurants, our food trucks and food stalls; but I have to tell you London is cool too! I have just returned from a ten day eating and cooking vacation in the UK, and it was a blast!

 Travel Notes

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What Careers are Possible After Culinary School?

Oct 2010: In these uncertain economic times, lots of people are turning to cooking to make a living or supplement their living—and it’s working! What I am going to do here is describe some of the careers graduates of Tante Marie’s Cooking School have and give the specific example of Jennifer Pappas of Half Moon Bay who graduated from our Six-Month Part-Time Pastry Course in March, followed by my recipe for Mom’s Apple Pie shown here being made by my friend, Sophie.

 Cooking Careers

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San Franciscans are Very Generous

Jul 2010: I believe deep down that most humans want to help their fellow humans in need. And, nowhere is it exemplified more than in Food Runners. Food Runners, which has been going for over twenty years, is a grassroots organization in San Francisco of volunteers picking up food from businesses that have excess food and delivering it to the neighborhood food programs. These include soup kitchens that feed the hungry, food pantries that give bags of groceries to families, childcare centers, senior centers, drop-centers, and single resident apartment buildings.

 Food in General

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Cooking for a Weekend Away

Jun 2010: Are you terrified that if you invite guests to the country, or the lake, that you will spend the whole time in the kitchen? Are you scared of not pleasing everyone? Are you afraid of deviating from recipes? Well, here are some great suggestions for getting rid of the anxiety and having fun!

 Food in General

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So, You’ve Always Wanted to Run a Restaurant?

Apr 2010: Since owning and running a restaurant is a dream of so many people, I thought I would write up a profile on a successful 38-year old San Francisco restaurateur, Shelley Lindgren.

 Where to Eat in San Francisco

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My Trip to Africa

Mar 2010: When my friend, Carol, called to ask me to join her and a group of women on a safari in Tanzania in February, I had to say yes! She did, however, point out that this would be my first trip abroad that wasn’t food oriented. But, I didn’t care—it has always been a dream of mine to go to Africa!

 Travel Notes

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Signature Street Foods of Singapore

Feb 2010: Happy New Year and hello from Singapore! I made a move with my family to this lovely tropical city 6 months ago for a new adventure. It's been a great experience so far and we're loving exploring this part of the world. [The family photo is from my recent trip to Cambodia.] Farina Achuck Kingsley

 Travel Notes

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My Relationship with Recipes

Jan 2010: My culinary journey started when I was nine years old! Each week my friend, Elizabeth Quisenberry and I would cook at one or the others house in Bronxville, New York. We usually cooked recipes found on the back of the Bakers Chocolate box, or the Swansdown Cake Flour box. Generally, the recipes on containers are very reliable. Elizabeth and I loved our fudge, chocolate brownies, and marble cakes.

 Food in General

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Jodi’s Thanksgiving Dessert

Nov 2009: Cooking is fun especially when taught by Jodi Liano, one of Tante Marie's most favorite teachers. For over ten years she has been teaching Basics on Tuesday nights and weekend classes such as how to entertain with ease, or cook for the family on week nights, or even do the whole Thanksgiving dinner. Everyone loves her classes, and her cookbooks (written for Williams-Sonoma), and her blog. To learn more about Jodi go to www.tantemarie.com/chefs/. And, more important here is her write-up about Thanksgiving dessert with her recipe for an easy pumpkin dessert.

 Holidays

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Chez Panisse

Oct 2009: Is the fabulous reputation of CHEZ PANISSE really worth it? Is having dinner downstairs at Chez Panisse really worth the long trip from San Francisco? Is the food all that good; and the ambiance and the service? The answer is a resounding "Yes"!

 Cookbooks
 Where to Eat in San Francisco

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Here Are a Few of My Favorite Things

Aug 2009: Are we in the beginning of a renaissance of home-cooking? Do we really care where our food comes from? Is America going to change – that is – stop eating on the run and start buying local and sustainable ingredients to cook at home? Frankly, I don't have the answers. It seems to me that in our fast paced lifestyle, we have to rely on others to do the cooking once in a while; and we should take pleasure in cooking and eating with family and friends as much as we can. Here for you is a selection of some special "take-out food" and a fabulous salad to serve before a summer cookout.

 Food in General

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Tante Marie’s 30th Anniversary

May 2009: I had absolutely no idea that hosting the 30th Anniversary of Tante Marie's Cooking School would mean so much to so many people! First of all, what we tried to do was contact all the past graduates of the Full-Time Culinary School to invite them to a dinner at my home on Saturday evening.

 Food in General

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Tante Marie Goes to Thailand

Mar 2009: What could be more fun than travelling with five of the Tante Marie teachers to Thailand to learn about the regional food? We met up at the fabulous Oriental Hotel in Bangkok and had a day or two to recover from the long flights and check out the local markets, palaces, and Jim Thompson's house. Frankly, having breakfast on the terrace overlooking the river and meeting other travelers from around the world is my idea of heaven. Everyone was just so happy to be there.

 Travel Notes

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There’s Nothing Wrong with Leftovers

Jan 2009: LEFTOVERS ARE GOOD! In fact, most accomplished home cooks plan to have leftovers in order to create totally different dishes. Think about the real Salad Nicoise—it is basically a salad of yesterday's cooked vegetables served with tuna. What is Ribolita? It is yesterday's minestrone, covered with bread and cheese and left to stand overnight.

 Food in General

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Merry Christmas From Tante Marie’s

Dec 2008: Students from the Culinary and Pastry courses got into the holiday spirit by hosting parties and providing delectable food and desserts for everyone to enjoy.

 Holidays

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How to Research Recipes?

Nov 2008: This Newsletter was written by Jodi Liano, who has been teaching the Basics Courses and various Weekend Courses on Home Cooking and Entertaining at Tante Marie's Cooking School in San Francisco since 1988. We are very proud of her first cookbook published by Williams-Sonoma, called NEW FLAVORS FOR VEGETABLES.

 Cookbooks

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Supper at T.T.’s

Oct 2008: My friend, T.T. never follows a recipe! She is one of the most naturally talented cooks I know and somehow she has to add something of her own to every recipe. That's okay with me. What T.T. did last night was prepare a warm, comforting dinner for Chuck and me in her home in San Bruno. And what a wonderful, well-thought-out meal it was!

 Food in General

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Organic Marin – from Land to the Table

Sep 2008: Organic Marin – from Land to the Table

 Cookbooks

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Want to Go to Pastry School?

Jul 2008: Here is a recent entry from a fabulous blog written by Anita Chu called Dessert First. In this entry she answers questions many of her readers have asked about going to pastry school.

 Cooking Careers

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Tante Marie in China

Jun 2008: When my friend, Nina Simonds, of SPOONFULL OF GINGER fame, asked me if I would like to join her and her husband on a trip to China in April, I couldn’t say "no". What more could I ask for than to travel with a Mandarin-speaking expert on Chinese food and an authority on classic sports cars?

 Travel Notes

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Note from Frances’ Trip to Ireland

Apr 2008: Frances Wilson, instructor of the Culinary Program returned to her native Ireland for a visit during March. She visited Ballymaloe Cooking School in east Cork as well as Cork City. She also spent time with her family in Dublin.

 Travel Notes

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Travel News From India

Mar 2008: The food in Northern India is exciting! I was fortunate enough to take a two-week tour in January with nine fabulous women (mostly from San Francisco), who love to cook and a cooking teacher from Minneapolis called Raghavan. Although it was pretty much your standard tour by airplane and bus seeing forts and temples, we were able to learn something of the food and culture of the region. Here for you is the information I learned—along with a plan for an Indian cooking party.

 Travel Notes

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Frances’ Trip to Vietnam

Jan 2008: Vietnamese food is the hot new trend here in the Bay Area. In September, Frances Wilson, the instructor of the Professional Program at Tante Marie's spent two weeks traveling in Northern Viet Nam. She came back excited about all she had seen and tasted on her trip and wanted to share it with you.

 Travel Notes

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What’s the Difference Between Salumi and Charcuterie?

Dec 2007: Why is every new and good restaurant offering a starter of a plate of house-cured Salumi? How did bringing in a whole hog become so popular with chefs? Really, I don't know!

 Where to Eat in San Francisco

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Where to Eat in Washington, D.C.

Oct 2007: Where to eat in Washington DC? There is no doubt about it DC is becoming a lively restaurant city! In only three days, I really wasn't able to check out all the great eating establishments; however, there is definitely a trend to very lively large open restaurants with excellent French-influenced food—in other words "brasseries".

 Where to Eat in Other Cities

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Where to Eat in New York

May 2007: Where to eat in New York? This is the hardest question to answer. With new restaurants opening up every day in New York, it's really, really difficult to keep up. Here is my quick answer: I would have breakfast at BALTHAZAR, lunch at MOMOFUKU, and dinner at PEASANT.

 Where to Eat in Other Cities

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Where to Eat in Chicago

Apr 2007: It's always fun to go to the annual conference of the International Association of Cooking Professionals— if only to see my cooking buddies. This year the IACP conference was at the Hilton in Chicago.

 Where to Eat in Other Cities

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San Francisco’s Pastries

Mar 2007: Who amongst us would not agree that French pastries are just about the best in the world? Well, America is catching up pretty fast! When I first went to France many years ago, I was interested to learn that there were two kinds of bakeries.

 Where to Eat in San Francisco

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Who’s Cooking at Tante Marie’s?

Jan 2007: Everybody — as we start 2007 all the classes and courses offered at Tante Marie's are full to capacity and everyone is having fun cooking together!

 Food in General

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Organize a Christmas Party!

Dec 2006: There is still time to organize a Christmas party! Just phone some friends, buy some food, make one or two dishes, and celebrate the season of giving and sharing!

 Holidays

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How To Make Thanksgiving Work!

Nov 2006: I have to say that Thanksgiving isn't my favorite holiday. Afterall, there aren't any gifts! But it can be fun if you have the right mix of people, don't worry about the outcome, and take time to enjoy the meal. Here are my suggestions for a good time for all.

 Holidays

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A Quick Trip to London and Paris with a Few Days In Troyes

Sep 2006: September is a gorgeous time to visit a couple of cities in Europe and spend some time with old friends not far from Paris. Added Note: My friend Betty Zlatchin of Betty Zlatchin Catering fame recommends Restaurant Jean and Itineraire in Paris after spending New Years 2010 there. Read Betty's blog at http://bettyzlatchin.com/blog/.

 Where to Eat in Other Cities

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Salt Spring Island, B.C. is a Great Place for Food Lovers

Aug 2006: So, why on earth would I choose to invite anyone who wants to celebrate my birthday in a farmhouse on Salt Spring Island? First of all, the farm is owned by my friend Michael Ableman, a well-known organic farmer, author, and speaker about sustainable agriculture.

 Travel Notes

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More Favorite Restaurants

Jul 2006: In my last Newsletter, I wrote of my five favorite restaurants in San Francisco; namely, Boulevard, Slanted Door, COCO500, A16, and Rubicon, all of which are essentially destination restaurants—where you would take someone from out of town. Here are three more.

 Where to Eat in San Francisco

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My Favorite Restaurants

May 2006: "What is your favorite restaurant in San Francisco?" That is the question I am asked most often at Tante Marie's Cooking School! So, here for you is my answer.

 Where to Eat in San Francisco

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Tante Marie’s Trip To Mexico

Apr 2006: The food isn't that good in San Miguel de Allende! Or, at least it was disappointing in the five days I was there for my niece, Mandy's wedding. But, don't give up—I still have a great recipe for you!

 Travel Notes

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Insalata’s in San Anselmo

Mar 2006: There's a whole new look at INSALATA'S in San Anselmo! Wait until you see it — the dining room is warmer in tones with a more intimate feel; the service is very special; and the food has a new look and taste. Congratulations to Heidi Krahling and all staff — great job!

 Where to Eat in San Francisco

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Barbuto in New York City

Feb 2006: BARBUTO'S Braised Pork Ribs with Savoy Cabbage and Mostarda is new and fun and perfect for a winter's easy entertaining or family supper! It is my interpretation of a dish I ate in December at Barbuto, a lively casual restaurant near the Meat Packing District in New York.

 Where to Eat in Other Cities

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COCO500 in San Francisco

Nov 2005: COCO500 is the newest hottest restaurant in San Francisco! As soon as you walk in, you are struck by the life of the place.

 Where to Eat in San Francisco

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