Cooking Superstar

Something New For Dinner

Cook along with Kim from Something New For Dinner

Kim Pawell
Newport Beach, CA
Food blogger

When did you first get in to cooking and do you remember the first recipe you tried?

When I was about 8-years old. My favorite thing to cook was Snickerdoodle cookies.

What's your kitchen like and how do you keep organized when cooking?

I have an enormous kitchen that gets daily use. If I'm not cooking and photographing, I'm writing in the kitchen. My cupboards and drawers are all well-organized and everything has its place. But when I start to cook or write I spread everything everywhere -- cookbooks, pots and pans, ingredients, notes, cameras, lighting, props, etc... I am really very messy.

What tips would you give to someone wanting to become a better cook?

Cook every day; read cookbooks like a novel; learn the underlying processes of cooking and don't rely too heavily on recipes; trust your gut and experiment; cook for family and friends; don't worry too much about any one meal; and enjoy!

Who would you invite to your dream dinner party and what would you cook for them?

Carl Sagan, Michael Pollan, Seth Myers, Michelle and Barack Obama and my Great grandmother Moore. I would cook a casual paella dinner with mango and passion fruit sangria and an orange flan for dessert. Most of the work would be done well in advance so we could focus on great conversation.

Do you do any other crafts and what are your hobbies?

I grew up sewing, crocheting and doing other needle-crafts. I like to garden, take long walks, read and I love to travel.

Which cooking blogs do you love to read?

Eva Kosmas Flores of Adventures in Cooking and Kimberley Hasselbrink of The Year in Food.

Is there anything else you'd like to add?

I enjoy the process and the art of cooking and I love how good food brings people together. Like Michael Pollan, Andrew Weil and Jamie Oliver, I believe home cooking solves a lot of really big problems. I hope my website Something New For Dinner helps people get back into the kitchen to connect with their food, their friends and their families.

Kim Pawell
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I like to cook a lot of multi-ethnic foods inspired by my childhood in Honolulu, Hawaii

What's your favorite...

TV Show
Parenthood, it is a really great show about modern family dynamics.
All the great bands from the 60's and 70's whose songs I know the words by heart.
Sydney, Australia
Dr. Zhivago
Cook Book
All the Ottolenghi cookbooks.
Thai, Vietnamese, Hawaiian, Italian, Spanish, Mediterranean, French, Italian, Middle Eastern, North African. I love them all!
Great olive oil, Pimenton de la Vera, limes, Thai fish sauce, za'atar, sumac, ginger, garlic, passion fruit, mango and Maldon salt.
Kitchen Gadget
My 20-cup Cuisinart food processor and my Shun knife.