Rachel Going attended the Culinary Institute of America and graduated with a degree in Culinary Arts at 19. She honed her craft cooking in restaurants in her hometown before moving back to New York City and working at Gramercy Tavern. At Gramercy Tavern, Rachel realized that baking and pastries were her true loves and decided to become a pastry chef. She returned to California and worked at Carl Schroeder's restaurant Market as the opening pastry chef. After a brief interlude selling her goods at farmers' markets and doing private catering, Rachel returned to restaurant work. She is now the Pastry Chef at Schroeder's second restaurant, Banker's Hill Bar and Restaurant. Discover more of Rachel's creations on her blog. Follow her on Twitter at @rachelgoing.
San Diego, California
Q: How did you get involved in cooking? Was it something you learned to love early or did you come to it later?
A: I've always been interested in cooking. I played around in the kitchen from a very young age and always cooked and baked with both grandmas. I knew I wanted to go to culinary school when I was a senior in high school, so I graduated early and got a job cooking so that my dad would know I was serious. After I graduate, I realized I love restaurants almost as much as I love food.
Q: Why is it so important to have the right ingredients?
A: If you are starting with great ingredients, you don't have to work too hard or alter the product too much. I like it when my food tastes like what it is.
Q: Why is eating grass-fed meat important? How does it affect your cooking?
A: As I mentioned above, having the right ingredients is crucial to getting a great end product. I think grass-fed meat falls into the category of "right ingredients" and I've always gotten great results when using it.
Q: What are the most important keys to success for the home chef?
A: Eat what's in season! Food tastes so much better in season.
Q: What home cooking tips can you provide for our readers?
A: Don't be afraid to mess things up. That's when you learn the most.