Welcome to the Pantry Rat. My name is Nanette – well, it’s actually short for Marie Antoinette – but I don’t cavalierly say “Let them eat cake”!

I’m a globetrotter and trail-blazer, manager to very large estates, personal assistant, chef by default and modern day female Indiana Jones.

A motto I live by is “pleasure in the job, puts perfection in the work“, because no task is ever too big or too small if it’s done with passion, dedication and enthusiasm.

Maya Angelou once said that people will always forget what you’ve said but will never forget how you’ve made them feel, that is why I love being a part of the service industry and providing unparalleled service.

Confession #1:  There is nothing as addicting and sensual than cooking and serving great food

Thomas Keller said it best when in the early 70’s he was catapulted into the culinary world by the words from a fellow French Chef: “Cooks cook to nurture people and to do that you have to have a deep emotional connection with food”. Following with the words of the incomparable Julia Child “I was 32 when I started cooking, until then I just ate”. My journey began at the age of 25 and I haven’t broken stride since.

Because it was back then I had the epic revelation that food was intoxicating. It had the power to excite the senses, delight, awe-inspire, create a passionate response and win the affections of most everyone. There is nothing more sensual or sexy than cooking for someone that loves food equally as much you love preparing it or talking about it over a superb glass of wine. My cooking has been labeled as vibrant, imaginative, complex and inventive. I transform ingredients injecting new mojo with my fusion of cuisines. Today food should be playful and adventurous and there’s nothing wrong in venturing into unchartered territory and putting your own spin onto old classics.

Confession #2: I am addicted to cookbooks and I surreptitiously “confiscate” Splenda packages from a restaurant

I’m in possession of a colossal arsenal of cook books, about two hundred give or take, which I’ve accumulated through my international forays. My bookshelves are groaning with the weight and to my chagrin, I keep acquiring more. It’s easy to capitulate to the hypnotic pull from the internet for a recipe, yet there is nothing more comforting than leafing through a cookbook, with countless stains, earmarks and scribbles.

It is common knowledge, a food blogger is born every five minutes. While, some blogs are peppered aggressively with vibrancy, making them a stalwart and welcome addition to the food porn arena, others, are as tediously monotonous as tackling a book on Bio-Chemistry.

My aim is to provide you with some solid, informative articles on the service industry, plus a few amusing observations and anecdotes on travel coupled with some food folklore trivia on colorful global cuisines.

Being a chef is like being an exceptional storyteller – because you’re always retelling a detailed story through food.

My fervent wish that you embrace and infuse world flavors into your cooking and my narratives provide a modicum of entertainment. And most importantly, provide an impetus to feed and reawaken your culinary appetite, muse and feel the joy attained in making really good food, almost at a professional level.

Sure, uncharted waters may lead to knife cuts, burns and a few kitchen disasters – but those are the war wounds of a truly good chef and we wear those scars proudly.

Life is fleeting. Some of us are still rifling through it looking for our marrow, while others have discovered their Shangri-La. I found mine, as Thoreau said – through food. So, consume exceptional wine, sample the richest chocolate, and be adventurous enough to fling yourself wholeheartedly into equally decadent food.

“I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived. I did not wish to live what was not life, living is so dear; nor did I wish to practice resignation, unless it was quite necessary. I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life, to live so sturdily and Spartan-like as to put to rout all that was not life, to cut a broad swath and shave close, to drive life into a corner, and reduce it to its lowest terms…”  Henry David Thoreau

Pantry Rat