Welcome to The Kitchen Scout!
My name is Valerie and I live outside of Boston with my husband, two daughters and our adorable cockapoo.
My passion for cooking started at a very young age. I was raised in an Armenian family and food was central to every occasion. I initially learned to cook by watching and working alongside my mother and grandmothers, each of whom had a distinctive culinary style. My mother, Joyce, was a wonderful cook and particularly enjoyed baking cakes and pies which she made with great love and care. She entertained with elegance and her home and table were always welcoming. My maternal grandmother, Queenie, cooked straightforward meals, but took great pride in presentation. She gave me some of my first cookbooks which I still have today. My paternal grandmother, Araxie, came to the United States in the early 1900’s and had five children so her food was plentiful at all times and you never left her house hungry. Her style was what I like to affectionately call gourmet-peasant. Each of these amazing women influenced my culinary perspective in their own unique way.
I grew up to be a banker, but would read cookbooks before work and cook many nights if only for my single-girl self. After working for 10 years, marrying and having my first baby, culinary school was calling. Since becoming a trained chef, I have dabbled in lots of food-related projects from being a personal chef and private caterer, to teaching, and compiling & editing cookbooks for non-profits. Most importantly, I’ve been head chef for my family of four.
So why “The Kitchen Scout”? I truly love spending time in my kitchen cooking and baking all types of savory and sweet dishes. Some are from tried and true family recipes and well known cookbooks while others are developed from ideas that pop into my head, needing to be expressed on the plate. I also enjoy trying new restaurants and food products. Ultimately, my joy comes from sharing recipes and other food experiences with my family and friends. That is essentially what this blog has been and will continue to be about – a way to be connected with the people I love, and engage new friends and followers via food and sometimes more personal life stories. From time to time, I will also share travel experiences, favorite kitchen tools, health & beauty finds and even books I am reading just to keep things interesting.
The majority of the photography and writing on this site is original and so I ask that you not use any of the images or words without my permission please.
If you have restaurants or recipes you’d like me to “scout” and share, I would love to hear from you! To receive my emails, please subscribe!
photo on this page courtesy of Peter Goldberg