Jennifer: Adventures in the Kitchen

Being able to cook allows me to experience new cultures through their recipes and ingredients.

-Jennifer
#KitchenHero

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Jennifer: Hero in the Kitchen via @CookSmarts
As an adventurer, Kitchen Hero Jennifer is all about hiking and flying trapezes, but even these activities seem like a breeze compared to putting dinner on the table! Meal planning can be stressful, and the many ingredients and choices in the supermarket don’t help at all. But with a little help and an adventurous spirit, Jennifer dives into cooking, and the results are delicious and rewarding, whether it’s enjoying healthy meals or learning something new. Read her Heroes in the Kitchen story below.

Name: Jennifer Brough
Age: 32
City, State: Orinda, CA
I cook for: myself and my husband Branden.
Outside of the kitchen I: am a full-time attorney and part-time adventurer (hiking, flying trapeze, you name it!).
Being able to cook allows me to: avoid processed convenience foods and experience new cultures through their recipes and ingredients.
Favorite Cook Smarts meal: Rotisserie chicken enchiladas with mushrooms and spinach

How did you learn to cook?

I taught myself to cook by following recipes I found online and in magazines. I would follow every recipe to the letter and measure everything precisely. After gaining skills through taking cooking classes with my husband, I’m now at a place where I use recipes more as inspiration than a rule book.

What’s been your biggest cooking challenge in the past?

Finding time to meal plan with a busy work and travel schedule. I would go to the grocery store and stand in the aisle completely overwhelmed. I would end up leaving with only milk, OJ and chicken breasts.

How has your cooking routine changed recently?

I cook almost every weeknight now because Cook Smarts takes the meal planning stress away. I love having a grocery list created for me! I can be in and out of the grocery store in 20 minutes, and I actually come home with ingredients for healthy, delicious meals.

“I love having a grocery list created for me! I can be in and out of the grocery store in 20 minutes, and I actually come home with ingredients for healthy, delicious meals.”

What new skill or dish have you cooked that you’re most proud of?

Learning how to cook fish! We didn’t eat much fish in my house growing up and I was completely afraid of it. Now it’s one of my favorite quick and easy meals.

What advice would you give to other home cooks who want to cook more homemade meals?

My kitchen mantra (preferably said in a Julia Child voice): “Don’t be afraid!” The worst that can happen when trying a new recipe is that you toss it in the trash and order Chinese takeout. If you fail at something, learn from it and use it to make the next meal better.


Thanks, Jennifer! Your positive attitude and determination is a real inspiration. Cooking is a learning experience that everyone can grow from, which is why it can be an adventure, too. We’d love to join you the next time you go trapezing, but for now, we’ll just stick with the kitchen adventures!

Jennifer's favorite @CookSmarts meal: Rotisserie Chicken Enchiladas with Mushroom and Spinach
To join Jennifer and cook meals like her favorite Rotisserie Chicken Enchiladas with Mushrooms and Spinach, check out our meal plan service. You can get started for free!

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