Daniel Peikes here. I was born and raised on the north side of Chicago to a father from the lower east side of Manhattan and a mother from the Golder’s Green neighborhood of London. I still live in Chicago with my wife and three kids. I grew up around the food business as both my father and uncle are in food manufacturing. I was going to food shows before my Bar Mitzvah, and chefs visiting my parents house was not an uncommon occurrence. I love me a good piece of meat. I probably have a burger at least once a week, am the pit-master of a kosher barbecue team, and have been known to occasionally grind my own sausage (much to my wife’s chagrin). I like to fuse new techniques with old world craft (Think sous vide chicken skin to make schmaltz and using molecular gastronomy to make a better pickle). I am a student of the sciences and therefor at times take a very methodical approach to cooking.
Hi, I’m Rachel Katzman, a.k.a. “Risky Veggie” and welcome to our blog! I am a 20+ year pescatarian (fish-eating vegetarian) and a recent convert to a healthier, mostly gluten-free lifestyle! I grew up in Omaha, Nebraska, but moved to Chicago in 2005. My husband, Elliott Fliegelman is (usually) a good sport about letting me use him as my guinea pig for new recipes!
I love to cook and experiment with unique and interesting flavors. I guess you could say I’m a little “risky” in the kitchen? No boring salads here! I even compete in Kosher BBQ competitions with none other than the pit-master himself, Mr. Daniel Peikes!
But I guess I should explain why, oh WHY did I stop eating meat.
When I was 9 years old, I was eating a chicken leg and I asked my mom if a “chicken walked on it.”
“Well, technically, there was a foot attached”, she said.
(Uh, okay…thanks mom?)
Fast forward a few weeks later when my mom had a bowl of stuffing on the counter and a raw chicken.
“Uh, mom what are you doing?!” I asked, slightly scared of the answer. “Well, I’m going to stuff it, roast it in the oven, then we’ll have it for Shabbat dinner,” she replied so nonchalant.
“Let me get this straight,” I said. “You’re going to STUFF (cue ‘stuffing’ hand motion), then we’re going to EAT it?!?”
“Uh, yes.” (Even my mom admitted later she was a little grossed out by my overreaction to this)
And that was it. I was told I needed to still eat fish so I could get enough protein (I mean, I was 9, I couldn’t argue my mom on that).
I’m so excited to share my love of food to all of you!!