Interview with Catherine from Hey Foodie Girl

  hey foodie girl interview

Tell us about yourself! What’s your name, where do you live, where do you work?

Hi there! I’m Catherine and I’m from Boston, MA. I’ll never turn down a lobster roll or Red Sox tickets! After studying psychology in college and obtaining a Master’s in Organizational Behavior, I wanted to find a job where I could collaborate with others and develop my own leadership skills. At first, I thought that was only possible in a corporate job (I worked in HR for about a year and quickly realized that the corporate life simply wasn’t for me)! I took a leap of faith and pursued a totally new career path and couldn’t be happier! I am now an event planner and event manager at a catering company in the Boston and have the opportunity to work with incredible people and talk about food all day, which is seriously a dream come true for me.

Share your approach to food with us: what do you like to cook? Why?

Food is the way I connect with people. Growing up in a Greek-American family, I associate food with celebrations, love, and joy. I learned how to cook by spending time in the kitchen with my parents and grandparents, watching them carry on family traditions through food. As I got older, I explored different types of cuisines and began to experiment in the kitchen. From traditional Greek dishes to Thai-inspired flavors and Mexican spices, I like to make just about anything that brings me (and others) joy.

Describe your food personality in 5-7 words

Passionate. Adventurous. Convivial. Approachable. Evolving

What are your favorite recipes? Why? Tell us about them!

What are your 3-5 favorite recipes? Why? Tell us about them! (Please have these match the links/ pictures!)

Butternut Squash Pizza

This recipe is an example of why I started this Instagram account, and it makes me so happy that it is (so far) my most popular post on Instagram! I made this pizza completely on a whim and was floored by the response it received. I bought all of the ingredients in one shopping trip at my “home away from home” (Trader Joe’s) and threw everything together in about half an hour. Sharing recipes like this are my favorite because it shows how easy it is to make dinner at home! So many people are intimidated by cooking, and by starting with something simple like a store-bought pizza crust can instantly give them the confidence.

Caramel Popcorn Balls

When I bite into one of these, I travel back to my childhood in Nashua, NH, wearing a Princess Leia Halloween costume and carving pumpkins with my family. My dad only made popcorn balls once a year, and I looked forward to them more than any Halloween candy! If it weren’t for my dad, I wouldn’t love food or cooking as much as I do. He’s one of my role models in many ways, but I’ve always looked up to his ability to create flavors and memories without recipes.

I watched him make these for years, and this past year made them by myself for the first time. We FaceTimed halfway through because I couldn’t figure out why they were sticking to my hands and not rolling properly (“Catherine, you have to grease your hands with butter!”). I was thrilled that they tasted exactly the way I’d remembered and couldn’t wait to share the recipe with others.

Eggnog Scones

Another example of connecting memories with flavors, these Eggnog Scones came to be after I tried something similar at Dean & Deluca in NYC with a dear friend. I started with my favorite blueberry scone recipe from Hospitality and Joy and tweaked it until it tasted like Christmas in New York City!

eggnog scones

“Mujadara”

One of my favorite games is developing recipes by tasting something and trying to recreate it at home. Similar to my Eggnog Scone creation, this recipe came from lots of trial and error to get the flavors just right. After so many tries, I realized that I just wouldn’t be able to recreate this Lebanese dish the way I wished I could. So, I decided to change things up a bit and make it my own! That’s why I add quotation marks around the title; this is definitely not your Teta’s mujadara!

What’s your favorite thing about Want the Recipe?

I love how social media and the Internet have made recipes so much more accessible. Don’t get me wrong – my favorite recipes are the hand-written ones from my grandmothers – but I love that I can connect with all of my favorite bloggers and chefs by finding their recipes online. Want the Recipe continues to bond people over food, which is pretty much my favorite thing to do 🙂

What food can you not live without?

Sushi! I haven’t tried making it myself yet, but one of these days I will.

What kitchen appliance do you swear by?

My Le Creuset Dutch oven. I found it on clearance at TJ Maxx and smile each and every time I use it!

What are your favorite blogs/ Instagram accounts that you follow? What do you like about them?

Ambitious Kitchen

I had the pleasure of meeting Monique in February! I’d been making her recipes and following her blog for years, so it was surreal meeting her in person. She is just as down to earth as she seems on her blog/Instagram! Her recipes are foolproof, healthy, and delicious.

Chef Tatiana Rosana

Can you say #girlboss?! She’s the executive chef at one of the hottest restaurants in Boston, is a 2x Food Network Chopped Champion, and posts some amazing stuff on her Instagram.

Boston Food Journal

I have lots of favorite Boston restaurants, but I look to Brittany at BFJ for advice on new places to try and what to order at each spot. Her recommendations are always on point and her feed is outstanding! If you live in Boston or are visiting, she’s your one-stop-shop for recommendations.

Do you have any advice for our food community?

Be bold. Take chances. Don’t be afraid to try something new, whether that means buying an ingredient you’ve never tried (one of my favorite activities – I challenge myself to try a new ingredient every time I go to the grocery store!) or changing your career path to pursue what you love.

What’s your Instagram handle, blog link, any other social media or accounts you’d like us to share!

What’s your Instagram handle, blog link, any other social media or accounts you’d like us to share!

Right now, I just have my @heyfoodiegirl Instagram account.

Anything we missed?

Not that I can think of! Thank you so much for featuring me. I’m honored! What started as a side hobby has unexpectedly turned into a source of inspiration and community for me, and having the opportunity to be featured on here assures me that I’m on the right track!

Thank you, Catherine! Go PATS and SOX!

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