About The Wisdom Kitchen and Wendy
The Wisdom Kitchen offers classes and workshops on the how’s and why’s of preparing traditional foods for people who want to learn how to create more nourishing meals for themselves and those they love. These classes are for people who sense there is a better way to eat, yet the thought of how and where to begin feels overwhelming. The Wisdom Kitchen teaches you how to prepare traditional foods in order to benefit your body and soul as well as for those you love.
that gathering, preparing and sharing nourishing food nurtures our bodies and souls. Whole foods, the kinds our grandmothers and great-grandmothers prepared, emanating from ancestral wisdom, connect us-allow us to be present-to feel gratitude and to slow down. In a world where our senses are on overload and stress seems to be a common concern, taking the time to connect with local farmers and fresh food producers, ultimately connects us to each other. Carefully choosing, preparing and sharing wholesome and restorative food is the definitive expression of love and joy towards those we invite to our table.
How it all Began…
Nourishing food has been a central part of my life since I was very young. As a little girl, I remember visiting my grandmothers’ homes for family meals and delighting in the delicious foods we were served. Traditional Jewish foods such as borscht (one grandmother made it cold, the other made it hot), noodle kugel, homemade pickles, cheese knishes, freshly made burgers, even, yes, beef tongue, adorned the table to nourish my family. My grandmothers were always so proud of the meals they prepared. They would sit and watch us eat with such pleasure and joy.
I grew up in a family where my father made his living and supported our family by selling ice cream. Ice cream made its way into many family conversations, was offered at our dinner table almost nightly and always made people smile as they ate it. Thanks to my father, I was the lucky kid who got to take my entire Grade Four class to tour the dairy and to watch ice cream being made! My first job was selling ice cream for my father’s company. I still remember the look of sheer joy in many a child’s eyes as a parent said, “yes” to buying an ice cream on a hot, summer day. I loved being part of the excitement.
As I grew, married and became a mom, I became very intrigued with traditions, most specifically surrounding food. To my regret, I never thought to ask my grandmothers for their beautiful, traditional recipes. I am grateful that a few were passed down to me, but I so wish I had more. I began researching traditional foods within my culture and shared many occasions with my children preparing special foods for my loved ones. Chanukah brings a variety of latkes to our table. Passover always includes baked matzo. Purim gave me the opportunity to pull out the rolling pin and make dozens and dozens of hamentashen. All of these specialties are made with love and fulfill special requests from my family.
During my California years, I frequented the farmer’s market on a weekly basis. A favorite family outing was visiting our nearest family farm, where the kids could pick fresh fruits and vegetables right from the soil, then enjoy their delicious, nutritious flavors. The fruits and vegetables were abundant and cooking with them fulfilled me, as I knew the meals I prepared were nourishing.
Moving back to Winnipeg in 2009 required much adjustment. The growing season here is brief and the farmer’s markets only operate for a few, short months. For a while I was lost. I didn’t know where or how to source whole foods all year long and truly missed year round access to freshness!
Luckily, I am a researcher! I love to learn! I love to network and am always moved to connect with passionate and inspiring people. Through my research I began to read about the benefits of lacto-fermentation. I followed my heart (and my gut) and took a class on lacto-fermentation and was hooked! Not only did the fermented veggies taste delicious, but the nutritive benefits were incredible! I then remembered my grandmother making sauerkraut and realized I was coming full circle. I wanted to learn more. Understanding that lacto-fermentation was only part of the traditional foods world, I bought Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon and read it from cover to cover (well almost)! I began experimenting with various types of traditional food preparations and was thrilled when I found the Traditional Wisdom Modern Kitchen training program. I followed my heart and jumped in with both feet. From there The Wisdom Kitchen became a reality.
Before and during...
Although my journey has been long and winding, I believe it all weaves together into a beautiful patchwork quilt.
I am a multi-passionate, lover of learning, connector of people and feel completely fulfilled when I teach! I lead with my heart and strive to make a difference in people’s lives in all I pursue.
I began my career-teaching children, and then moved into curriculum development and teacher training. Since moving back to Winnipeg, I am the proud founder of More Than Shoes (a program that puts new running shoes and winter boots on children in need) and the author/publisher of More Than Soup (www.morethansoup.net), a cookbook that raises funds for CancerCare Manitoba’s Soup Cart program. I do Instructional Design for Red River College. Recently, I obtained my TESOL certificate (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) and look forward to combining my passions to help empower immigrant women to bring their traditional foods forward and into the marketplace.
Enough about me...