Laurel Lather grew up learning most of the basics of cooking from her grandmother. She, then, was able to teach herself a lot and grew more in love with cooking throughout the years. When she turned 30 she decided to do a 2-year program for restaurant management. The Ragin Cajun with Justin Wilson was one of Laurel’s culinary influences growing up. He had a great personality that made people want to cook. Listening to him talk about southern cooking inspired her to start cooking.
Laurel expresses her culinary skills by teaching classes at Plum’s. She also enjoys traveling while selling her cookbook “The Nostalgic Chef.” as well as her famous herb blends. She developed most of her technical skills at a restaurant in Wisconsin called the Fill Inn Station. She was able to do a lot of prepping for the restaurant which helped her learn basic knife skills and much more.
Q. Do you have a special philosophy or approach when it comes to cooking?
A. Just have fun with it and don’t take it too seriously. It’s all about finding the flavors you like and putting them all together. You don’t have to worry about a recipe because it’s never set and stone.
Q. Which job gave you the most meaningful experience?
A. My job at the Sioux Falls Brewing Company. That was the first place I was able to use my management skills. It also opened up a world of things I never thought I could do and gave me confidence.
Q. What dish inspires you the most?
A. Soups! I adore making soups.
Q. What are your favorite tools in the kitchen?
A. My knife!
Q: Where is your favorite restaurant? (it doesn’t t have to be local, it can be international)
A. The Portuguese Restaurant in Sonoma. We got to sit and watch them prepare the food. It was a great experience.