FOOD // Cooking with Taylor Hannum

COOKING WITH TAYLOR HANNUM

Why did you decide to become a chef? (Or do you prefer baker??) 

I decided to become a chef, because I’ve always loved baking and cooking for my family and friends. When I see how much joy it brings to them, my heart is so full! I of course enjoy making creations for myself, but when you can share your passion with others, it is hands down the best feeling. I also enjoy being able to create art with my dishes, whether it be a nicely plated salmon crostini or a layered cake sculpted into an apple. When I’m fully immersed in a recipe in the kitchen, I’m in total bliss!

How did you learn to cook/bake?

I learned majority of my culinary skills early on from my grandma and mom. I have memories from mornings with my grandma teaching me how to make the perfect scrambled egg and sitting on the countertop watching my mom make chocolate chip cookies from the recipe on the back of the Toll House bag. 

But once the Food Network popped onto my television in the late 90’s, I was absolutely obsessed with watching all of the pros. I would watch everyone – Emeril Lagasse, Alton Brown, Jamie Oliver, Jacques Torres, Gale Gand, Giada De Laurentiis, Sandra Lee and Rachael Ray. I would then head straight to the internet, print off their recipe and try it out immediately. I learned all about trial and error, new techniques and how much happiness the culinary world brought to me throughout those years. 

How long has it been?

I would guess that my interest for baking first started when I was at least 8 or 9 years old, and rapidly increased throughout my teenage years.

What are some of your favorite dishes to cook?

My favorite savory dishes to make always include anything creamy or cheesy. I would have to say at the top of my list is a mushroom sauce that is to die for! It is so incredibly versatile, allowing you to make a yummy pasta, top your favorite protein with the sauce or even using it as a gravy for mashed potatoes.

When it comes to baking sweets, I feel like my favorites are always changing due to the sheer amount of creativity that is constantly evolving the baking world. But if I had to choose, it would be chocolate chip cookies. I love the simplicity of the cookie and I’ve been addicted to chocolate, for like, ever! It also might be due to that fond memory I have with my mom making chocolate chip cookies and always trying to steal some dough when she wasn’t looking!

Tell me a bit about your Instagram/Youtube and the videos you’ve been creating. Is it for fun, or are you trying to take it somewhere? What are your goals?

I started creating baking and cooking content for YouTube and Instagram a few months ago. At first, my family and friends had suggested it as an outlet to share my passion even further. I’ve found the videos to be a great source of inspiration for myself to teach others about the kitchen, while allowing myself the freedom to have fun with being in front of and behind the camera. Not only do I hope to inspire my viewers to get cooking and baking in the kitchen, but I hope I can make them smile or giggle along the way. My dream has always been to have my own bakery, but I ultimately hope to turn my baking videos into a TV show or even a mini-series in the Wild West of new age digital streaming services!

Who are you inspired by?

When it comes to personal inspiration in life, it’s always been my parents. They have been my motivators and inspiration from day one. I’m so grateful to have parents that have supported my hopes and dreams no matter what and never for a second doubted me. I’m always striving to make them proud and give back all they have ever given to me and my brothers. 

Other incredible women that inspire me on the daily are Katie Lee, Claire Saffitz, Ina Garten, and Marie Forleo.

If you’re not modeling on set or baking in the kitchen, what else can we find you doing? (i.e. What other hobbies do you have off duty? This can be as simple as reading, dancing, traveling, etc!)

You can always find me nose deep in a book. Whether it be a new or vintage cookbook, true crime mystery, self-help, sci-fi or romance novel – I love ‘em all! Also a huge fan of: hiking, DIY crafts, seeking out new Indie films, pilates, writing, thrift shopping, traveling, being a total goofball with my boyfriend 🙂

Can’t get enough of Taylor?

Follow her on Instagram and check out her portfolio!

Also be sure to check out her Youtube Channel for her cooking recipes!

 

– Photoshoot Credits –

Photographer: Stacey Lamb

Hair Stylist: Lydia Oullette

Make-up Artist: Wyvetta Taylor

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