Hello and welcome to Utilitarian Culinarian. My name is Katie Wright and I am a formally trained French chef living in Texas with my husband and two dogs. I have a Bachelors Degree in English Literature from Kenyon College and graduated with an Elite Diplome de Cuisine with a minor concentration in Baking and Pastry from the Culinary Institute LeNotre and performed my stagaire training at Restaurant du Palais Royal in Paris. I am trained in cooking but my truest expertise is in eating.
Enough about me, let's talk about me. I love cooking, when I feel like it. Sound familiar? Don't get me wrong, cooking is my passion but sometimes passion can be a real pain in the ass. Cooking is time intensive, thoughtful, creative, fickle, heart breaking, fun, terrible, experimental and wonderful. There is an intoxicating feeling watching my puff pastry "puff" and nothing will make my eyebrows furrow right off of my face faster than spending hours trying to perfect a braise only to taste it and know that there's still something missing. Is it balanced? Is there enough acid? Did I add too much salt? Is there such a thing as too much garlic? Or salt? It can drive you to take-out. This blog is about my misadventures in cooking and baking as well as experimenting with much more experienced recipes than that of my own design (Why reinvent the wheel? I'm not a wheeler. Or whatever). I call myself "utilitarian" not because of my sparse ingredients but because it is a philosophy that I strive to apply in my life as well as my culinary pursuits. I try to keep zero single-use items in my kitchen, I only have what I need. But sometimes spoil yourselves, OK? Geez.
This blog is not geared toward time-saving tricks or shortcuts because most good food takes time and effort. This blog is also not here to make you feel bad about not having that kind of time. I don't even have that kind of time and I literally have that kind of time. Here is what this blog is: a choose your own adventure! Taste and try things that are interesting to you, make time or budget around things that you (hopefully) find inspiring and challenging. I hope I'm able to teach you something you didn't already know and to give you some small amount of help to get you on your way to cooking, shopping, organizing and (most importantly) eating like a chef. Bon Apetit!