Welcome back to another installment of “Sweetheart of the Week!”
This week we have Julie Gordon, owner of Inspiring Kitchen. Inspiring Kitchen creates personalized kitchen plans for brides, grooms, homeowners, interior designers and realtors.
Gordon first got into this business by being excited about going to the International Housewares Show every year and seeing all the new spatula colors displayed like a rainbow.
She spent more than 14 years in the housewares industry, representing high quality brands as All-Clad Metalcrafters and KAI USA, Shun Knives, working directly with national retailers including Williams-Sonoma, Crate and Barrel, Sur La Table, Bed Bath and Beyond and Bloomingdales Home stores.
Gordon has also interacted with talented chefs on a local and national level, including Emeril Lagasse and Chris Cosentino. She also loves to cook herself.
“Cooking is free form,” Gordon explains. “Be as creative with recipes as you want. If you don’t have an ingredient, improvise. With baking, measurement and accuracy is key. That can be challenging when it’s not how you think.”
Gordon is a big fan of ice cream, and highlighted her favorites in her blog post here. Some places include George’s in Andersonville, Cone in the West Loop, and Lickity Split Frozen Custard in Edgewater.
She went on to answer some quick questions about her favorite kitchen utensils, desserts, and what sweet treat trends she is noticing:
The one kitchen tool I can’t live without is…a good Japanese knife. I love Santokus.
My favorite sweet treat to eat is…really good vanilla or coffee ice cream, creme brûlée or cheesecake. It depends on my mood.
My favorite meals to cook are…appetizers, they’re lots of work but inspire lots of creativity.
My favorite desserts to make are…lemon bars and pumpkin squares, I’m known for them.
My favorite bakeries and dessert places in Chicago are…BAKE for their cookies, Whole Foods for their fruit tarts, and Joe’s Steak and Seafood because I would buy a whole key lime pie from them. I like many places for different reasons.
The trends I am noticing in the dessert scene are…a huge effort to use pure ingredients; no preservatives, artificial colors or flavors; and unusual fruits and mixed flavor profiles.
Whether you are looking for recipe development, brand visibility, industry trend information, custom wedding registries, kitchen design or travel and tourism from a culinary perspective, Julie Gordon and Inspiring Kitchen are here to help.
Have the sweetest day!