Not too long ago, we chatted with cookbook author Renée Kohlman about her journey in creating her first cookbook, ‘All the Sweet Things‘. Starting as a cook in professional kitchen, Renée began documenting her adventures in cooking online while working as a caterer in Saskatchewan.
Encouraged by friends and family who devoured her food pics, Renée began her blog, ‘Sweetsugarbean’. Just as cooking came naturally to Renée, so did writing. “I fell in love with writing on the blog,” Renée explains, “it was like a journal that I wanted people to read; like I was writing to a friend who lived far away.”
Renée soon began working on her first cookbook, ‘All the Sweet Things‘ appropriately named as the book features only recipes for delicious desserts, and tasty treats. Last year, ‘All the Sweet Things‘ took home a Taste Canada Gold Award for the best single-subject cookbook.
The win felt amazing for Renée who states that it was “one of the best nights of my life, I was over the moon!” To be received so warmly and in such high regard by her peers and food writers from across Canada was an honour.
We caught up with Renée to ask her a few questions about what inspires her, her favourite comfort foods, and what makes her tick in the kitchen!
What’s the last thing you burned?
I burned a pan of cookies last winter. Forgot to set the timer!
Your favourite spice?
Cardamom. It’s earthy and mysterious!
What makes you ‘kitchen angry’?
When there are too many dishes piled up in the sink!
What’s your most extravagant purchase?
I bought a new gas range this summer. It was on sale, so I feel good about that, but still a little hard on the budget. It’s gorgeous and has a middle griddle, and I’m pretty much in love with it.
Favourite song in the kitchen?
Learning to Fly by Foo Fighters
What’s your comfort food?
Meatloaf. Lord, I love a good meatloaf; mainly because the leftovers make the best grilled sandwiches.
What’s your most essential tool?
I love a mini off-set spatula.
If you could change anything in the foodservice industry, what would it be?
Your favourite smell in the kitchen?
A chicken roasting away in the oven.
What’s your bad habit?
I second-guess myself too much.
What do you admire in other chefs?
Their work ethic, creativity and sense of humour. Chefs are a wacky bunch.
Who or what is your greatest inspiration?
What’s your end of the world menu?
Toasted tomato sandwiches, to start. Made with the ripest, garden fresh tomatoes, on thick slices of sourdough smeared with mayo. Salt, pepper, done.
Main course is roast chicken, mashed potatoes, gravy, dilled green beans.I really love roast chicken!
Dessert is a slice of sour cherry pie from All the Sweet Things.
Your favourite advice or quote?
“You’ll never do a whole lot unless you’re brave enough to try.” – Dolly Parton