Tara: Celebrating Small Victories in the Kitchen

I’ve had my share of big successes in the kitchen, but honestly it’s the small victories that make me feel the best. – Tara

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For Kitchen Hero Tara, cooking is an enjoyable and relaxing process. That’s probably because she doesn’t sweat the failures! Understanding that things can and will go wrong in the kitchen (no matter how pro you are), having back-up plans, and celebrating the small wins are all ways that Tara becomes a better cook. Whether she’s poaching an egg or making homemade cheeses, Tara’s ability to trust her instincts has led her to many cooking victories, both big and small. Read more about her Hero in the Kitchen story below.

Name: Tara Pommer
Age: 45
City, State: Thornton, CO​
I cook for: myself, my husband and our five-year-old daughter​.
Outside of the kitchen I: am a stay at home mom, gardener, hiker and play date host.
I discovered Cook Smarts: on the web while searching for meal planning help. It was exactly what I was looking for!
I cook because: to me, feeding someone is the ultimate expression of love and caring. I also find the process of cooking very enjoyable and relaxing.
Favorite Cook Smarts meal so far: Probably the Stromboli – we’ve had it several times now, and it’s something I never would have decided to make on my own.​

HOW DID YOU LEARN TO COOK?

I learned to cook by hanging out in the kitchen with my mother and grandmother when I was young. I’ve also learned a lot just from years and years of practice!​

WHAT’S BEEN YOUR BIGGEST COOKING CHALLENGE?

Accommodating the tastes of our very picky child while still keeping meals interesting enough to satisfy the adults.​

How has your cooking routine changed since starting Cook Smarts’ meal plans?

My routine has (thankfully) become far more streamlined​. The use of common ingredients across a week’s worth of recipes and the early prep really makes everything faster and more efficient.

TELL US ABOUT YOUR PROUDEST KITCHEN MOMENT.

My husband and I used to operate a small farm where we raised poultry and dairy goats. One year, a chef friend prepared about 20 of our broilers as well as several cheeses that I had made for a large farm-to-table dinner.​

I’ve had my share of big successes in the kitchen, but honestly it’s the small victories that make me feel the best – like turning out a perfectly poached egg.

WHAT ARE YOUR TIPS FOR HEALTH AND SUCCESS IN THE KITCHEN?

I think the keys to cooking success are to trust your senses and not sweat the failures. You’ll know if something doesn’t look / smell / taste right, so don’t ignore that feeling. And things will go wrong, whether it’s your first or hundredth time cooking. Don’t let it hold you back – just make a sandwich and try again tomorrow!


Thank you for your awesome cooking tips, Tara! Nothing makes us feel better about kitchen failures than a delicious grilled cheese sandwich. 😉 Your cooking story is truly an inspiration, and we continue to wish you lots of successes in the kitchen!

To join Tara and cook meals like her favorite Stromboli with Mozzarella & Salami, check out our meal plan service. You can get started for free!

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