About Me

Banker by day, chef by night … that’s one of the ways to describe who I am.

I will be very honest with you – I’m overweight. Not by much, maybe 30-40 pounds extra on a 5’9″ body … yup, definitely not the Abercrombie type. All, pretty much, the result of my parents’ uncompromising, unshaken belief that the baby must eat!

Pleasantville breakfast

As is common with East European Jewish families, my parents paid disproportionally more attention to general well being, fine arts, books, studies and whatever else keeps their kids immobile. At some point, though, I broke out of the ever-growing influence and partook in a variety of sports that at least gave me a good build and strength but didn’t do much for height or weight. Yet, I never really stopped loving food, or eating for that matter, when possible. So there you have it – 5’9″, 215 pounds.

Eat eat

After a short lapse in a well-fed lifestyle, in my student years, when food was often replaced with a cigarette, bad coffee and alcohol, I started discovering new patterns in my gastronomic preferences, well beyond the basic physical need. First I learned that there is more than one kind of cheese. Wine followed. Over the years I acknowledged that eating a lot is not a bad thing (the French might argue) but that there are many wonderful ways of doing so.

I immigrated from East Europe (Moscow, Russia) to Canada (Toronto, ON). The new home was a melting pot that offered endless culinary experiences that I slowly started discovering.

Staying true to my heritage, I explored Jewish delis of Northern Toronto as well as enjoyed the many tastes of the world elsewhere in the city. And then I started cooking (it helped that I immigrated alone) and never really stopped.

Pastrami Reuben

Here are a few things I want to say about this blog:

1) I am not a professional chef. I simply love cooking. For my family, myself, occasionally for my friends. My wife likes it. I like it. It’s all good.

2) “Never Trust a Skinny Chef” motto was inspired by Gordon Biersch’s “Never trust a skinny brewer”.

3) “Cuisinterest” is a portmanteau of Cuisine and Interest (pretty obvious I would think) but this interest of mine goes beyond the food. I love a good story, history and a few laughs and I will try to deliver all of that here.

4) This site will not pretend to be something unique. Au contraire (the French have finally spoken up!), most of the recipes here can be found elsewhere. I will write an occasional article to go with the experience and will post photos. In the end though, it’s just a reflection of what I enjoy doing.

5) Finally, I will not post every day. I’m planning to take it easy and update it as I go along. I have a full-time job and a family. And with the occasional craving for a Chinese take-out, I doubt I’m going to share my Panda Express experiences.

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