By Maria Isabella, Interview by Donita Anderson
Jennifer Wolfe Webb, director of The Cucina at Gervasi Vineyard in Canton, developed her early love of all things food through her mother, and then later through Zona Spray. In fact, Jennifer received her culinary training at Zona’s eponymous cooking school after having earned both a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in English. After earning her cooking school diploma, she also went on to receive an MA in Library Information Science, which she uses in her outside consulting work for food and food service businesses.
Jennifer’s proudest professional accomplishment to date has been putting together the brand new Cunica culinary school and assembling an impressive group of independent culinary instructors. A perk that comes from her association with this caliber of gastronomic venture is the people she comes into contact with. For example, when a visiting celebrity chef from Italy visited her home, with almost no time to prepare, Jennifer whipped up pizza appetizers and Philadelphia ice cream. Instructors from the Cucina brought the rest, and it was a fantastic evening of culinary delights and impromptu entertainment. “Most of the entertaining I do now happens on the spur of the moment,” admits Jennifer, “and is much less elaborate than the entertaining I did when I was less busy professionally.”
Of all the places Jennifer has eaten throughout her travels, her favorite is Arthur Bryant’s Barbecue Restaurant in Kansas City, Missouri (her hometown). She orders their burnt ends every time she goes back to visit her parents. But almost just as much, she relishes her husband’s delicious breakfasts while relaxing on deck aboard their sailboat.
What does she enjoy most about being a member of LEDI? In two words: the people!
Learn more about Jennifer as she shares some fun and interesting insights about herself with LDEI.
Which one chef (living or deceased) would you want to invite over for dinner? Sarah Leah Chase.
What is your favorite cookbook? All of Sarah’s cookbooks.
Any favorite indulgences? Lindt Salted Bittersweet Chocolate.
What’s your go-to, quick-and-easy dinner? Frittata or whole grains with veggies and cheese.
What’s your favorite dessert to prepare? Salted caramel sauce. I have this great recipe, which I serve over pound cake or ice cream. It’s wonderful.
What’s the biggest cooking mistake you’ve ever made? Early on, lots of things. But a crock pot, brisket, and way too much water comes immediately to mind.
What’s one ingredient you can’t live without? Olive Oil. I use the Greek Lefas brand, which I get from a neighborhood family store. I use cans and cans of it.
Name 3 things that are always in your refrigerator. Parmesan, Greek yogurt, and vegetables.
Name 3 kitchen gadgets you can’t live without. Chef knives, Oxo peeler, and silicone spatulas, which I feel you can never have enough of. My daughter actually makes fun of the fact that I’m always using them to get every last bit out of a container!
What would people be surprised to find in your kitchen? Ridiculous number of condiments everywhere.