Kitchen Careers is a regular feature that goes behind-the-scenes with chefs, bloggers, critics and others in the food industry to get the inside scoop on what its like to cook, or eat, for a living.
Chels Adams and Sues Anderson are the food blogging team behind the food blog “We Are Not Martha” where they write about all things food and lifestyle. Chels is a graphic designer, and Sues works as a freelance writer and social media consultant. Find out who their foodie crushes are, and which cartoon characters they would love to have for dinner!
Who is your culinary icon?
Martha Stewart, of course!
What is the best part about being a food blogger?
Chels and Sues: The best part about food blogging is definitely the community we’ve become a part of over the years. We’ve met so many passionate people who have similar interests and have turned into lifelong friends. Of course, we also love all of the opportunities we’ve had the chance to participate in, from dining at some of the best restaurants to interviewing celebrities and traveling across the country witheach other.
Why do you love to cook?
Chels: As a designer, I love seeing a project go from ideas or sketches to an end result. When I cook, it’s about building ingredients and flavors together to create a tasty final product that’s also visually appealing. Seeing the final plate is always so rewarding and eating it is even better. It’s really the best of both worlds!
Sues: Being in the kitchen is incredibly calming and peaceful for me. I love mixing and combining ingredients to make a final product that is both beautiful (well, sometimes!) and delicious. And at the end of the day, I love that food has the power to bring people together. I grew up eating family dinners every single night and I can’t wait to cook for my own family some day.
In one tweet (140 characters or less)- what is your culinary style?
Chels and Sues: You should be having fun in the kitchen. When all else fails, cupcakes, bacon, and cocktails make everything better.
Who would you want to battle on Iron Chef?
Chels: I’ve had a crush on Bobby Flay for years now, so I’d have pick him. He exudes such energy and a passion for food that’s hard to not admire. I think while battling Bobby, I would be completely distracted by the brilliant Alton Brown’s commentary, though.
Sues: I’d love to battle Michael Symon on Iron Chef, mainly because I’ve been following his career since I read about him in Michael Ruhlman’s “The Soul of a Chef,” and saw him achieve victory on The Next Iron Chef. However, instead of even trying to compete with him, I’d likely just observe his skills in awe the entire hour.
What was your first published recipe?
Chels and Sues:
We had our recipe for Cranberry Turkey Meatballs published in Volleyball magazine last year. Neither of us plays volleyball, but when they came to us for a seasonal, energy-packed recipe, we got cooking.
What is your favorite food city?
Chels: Always San Francisco. I have dreams of living there one day just so I’ll be surrounded by delicious food and creative people. I also fell in love with so many wonderful restaurants in Vancouver that left a lasting impression.
Sues: Though it doesn’t often make “the list,” I really appreciate Boston as a food city. The food world is smaller here, but in many ways that makes it more personal. From world-famous chefs to little hole-in-the-walls, I love exploring my home city. I wish Boston got more credit.
What is your favorite under appreciated kitchen tool?
Chels and Sues: You never appreciate the beauty of a sharp knife until you’ve tried making a meal with a dull one.
What three PBS personalities would you invite to dinner (animated, muppet, or living)?
Chels: Mister Rogers because I love a man in a cardigan, Ms. Piggy because after a couple glasses of wine I’m almost positive the party would be hoppin’, and all of the Berenstain Bears because there is just SO much love and wisdom in that family. And Jacques Pepin would cook for us… I know, I know, that’s more than three, but it’s impossible to pick. There’s so much greatness in the PBS family.
Sues: Julia Child, though I might make her do a little cooking before sitting down to eat; Bert from Sesame Street, because I have a feeling he’d loosen up a bit with a home-cooked meal and a glass of wine; and Fred Rogers because I’ve always wanted to have him as my neighbor (I’d invite Carmen Sandiego, too, but I don’t think she’d show up!).
What do you like to do when outside the kitchen?
Chels and Sues: When we’re not in the kitchen, it’s likely that we’re still eating. We love trying out new restaurants, heading to old favorites, and enjoying meals with family and friends. We’re also both passionate about our careers, so you’ll often find us working. Otherwise, we’re probably on the phone with each other.
What meal/snack is your guilty pleasure?
Chels: Anyone who knows me will say I’m truly, madly, deeply in love with popcorn. I can’t watch a movie without it. I also have a slight crush on sour cream and onion chips. I love crunchy, salty snacks that require me to drink a gallon of water after due to dehydration!
Sues: Absolutely anything involving peanut butter. And cheese. Probably not together. But maybe.
What is your advice for amateur cooks?
Chels and Sues: Just get in the kitchen and start cooking. Everything you make isn’t going to be perfect (or eatable), but that’s okay. The more you experiment, the better you’ll get and making mistakes is often the best way to learn.
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