Eliza's Kitchen was born out of my longtime love of food and cooking, which was passed down to me by my mother, grandmothers, grandfathers, and a long list of family. The first "food memory" I have was when I was 4 years old. My mom Eliza was making dolma (stuffed grape leaves and assorted vegetables) in our kitchen in Hollywood, and I wanted to help. So she handed me a hollowed out tomato, a bowl filled with the stuffing, and a spoon. I was having so much fun that she snapped a photo. See that smile on my face? I was in heaven cooking (especially with my mom) and nothing has changed. I am still happiest in the kitchen. Since my mom introduced this joy into my life at such a young age, and because she is still the best cook I know, this space is called Eliza's Kitchen. Nowadays, I cook for my kids and my 4 and 2 year olds help me in the kitchen.
For me, food feeds your belly, your soul, and your heart. Cooking, and sharing food, creates a sense of community and belonging. It brings people from all walks of life together.
I am Armenian and cooking is in my blood. We are known to be a very hospitable people, and that definitely filtered down the generations. My grandfather was always in the kitchen, and was always telling people to "eat, eat more."
Another love of mine is baking, and this too, I feel, was fostered by my mom. Growing up, we weren't allowed packaged cookies, sweets, or snacks, but there always seemed to be fresh baked goods in the house. Her walnut cake is legendary, and there are many photos of me sitting in front of one at my birthday parties. I recently made that cake for my daughter's birthday, and it was truly a full circle moment.
I hope you will feel welcome in this space, a virtual kitchen of sorts. My cooking style is very versatile, but has some core points. I always take inspiration from recipes of my mom's, so a lot of the dishes will be updated, modern versions of the dishes I ate growing up. I also look to cook on a budget while using the freshest, in season ingredients possible. Lastly, I don't believe that recipes need to be followed to the letter; instead, they are starting points and guides through a process of creating something that you will love. I look forward to sharing some great recipes and tips with you, and hopefully, out of the process of cooking and baking, some wonderful conversations will ensue. After all, what's a more universal language than food?
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