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On Why We Cook: To Seek Refuge, To Inspire And To Remember

04/16/2013 11:19 am ET | Updated Jun 16, 2013
  • Liza de Guia Founder and Chief Storyteller, food. curated., www.foodcurated.com

"Life's goal is to beat you down. Our goal is to tell Life, 'I'm here, I'm stronger than you.' And for me, that anchor is the kitchen. The kitchen is my constant."

Meet Jennifer Perillo, a.k.a. Jennie, the food writer and cookbook author behind In Jennie's Kitchen. Over the course of the next few weeks, I'll be profiling some very special people I've met for a short food. curated. series on Why We Cook.

What compels us to cook? That's a question I've been tossing around my head these past few months. I've been feeling a bit sentimental these days, spending time in the kitchen to "work things out." I've come to realize, that's what I do. I come to the kitchen to be fully present in the moment, to not let the past or future bother me, but to have space to just be me. I guess you could say, I cook to help let go. Last week, I made a beautiful salad for a friend I hoped to make amends with, enjoyed the simplicity of finding that just-right recipe, with that oh-so-perfect blend of flavors and ingredients to make 'em know I cared. Over the weekend, I popped out of bed with a mission to bake fluffy, buttery biscuits, to help erase a heavy night of tears and bad dreams, after a week of some sad, personal news. So for me, the kitchen is where I go to repair and find peace. For Jennie, the kitchen is even more: Food. Family. And Life. Lots of life to be exact. A whole spectrum.

I don't want to say too much, because I think her video says it all. I hope you enjoy Jennie's story. I hope it inspires you like it inspires me. Every time I watch it, I'm moved.

To read more about her life stories and to try some of her recipe creations, you can purchase her new -- and very first -- cookbook Homemade with Love, here.

Thanks for watching food. curated.! We're honored to be nominated for our 4th James Beard Award for Best Video Webcast 2013. Happy Cooking!