Cooking in the kitchens of some of the Gold Coast’s leading restaurants allowed Terri Taylor to blend her love of cooking with her love for family. Now she shares her tips for cooking healthy meals, using in-season local ingredients, at her boutique cooking school.
When her children were young, Terri found working in the kitchens of Jupiter’s Casino, the Hilton Hotel Sydney and the Paragon Seafood Restaurant was the ideal way to balance work and family.
Now that her children have left home Terri is focused on sharing her knowledge with customers in a more relaxed setting – her own kitchen.
She hosts cooking classes in her Tamborine Mountain home, working a vast array of Scenic Rim produce into the menu.
“I had the nice location and the knowledge. I moved to Tamborine Mountain because I love gardening, I used to get so frustrated at the Gold Coast because I couldn’t grow vegetables in my garden due to water restrictions and the sandy soil,” she says.
“I live on two acres. One acre is cleared and the rest is rainforest. As well as landscaped gardens I have a quarter of an acre with fruit trees and veggie beds.
“My initial idea was to have people come here, walk through the garden, pick produce and come back to the kitchen to cook it. I soon realised that people weren’t wearing the right shoes to walk through the garden and most people didn’t want to do that. They wanted a straight cooking class and to have a relaxing day.”
So that’s what Terri serves up at her Tamborine Mountain Cooking School. She welcomes groups of mainly women into her home kitchen, where she teaches them how to use fresh, local, in-season ingredients in recipes from Asia, France, Europe and Australia.
Eating local is a philosophy that’s close to her heart. She says it makes sense for both financial and health reasons.