Hello readers! I’m Lauren Snyder, a mother of two, entertainer for many, and founder of MethodToMyMeals. On MTMM, I’ll share recipes that have proven to serve me well and the methods I’ve picked up making them along the way. My goal is to write about cuisines and recipes that seem “scary” so they’ll be less intimidating and they’re flavors your whole family will love. I’ll also share my quick go-to’s that you can throw together without a fuss, possibly using some of the leftovers from your more adventurous dishes. Appetizers, sides, kids lunches, you’ll find recipes for everything here. Creating a delicious homemade meal can be so much fun and rewarding. I promise to always post original, interesting, important content that I am passionate about.
HOW I GOT STARTED
In my opinion, cooking has to be something that you’re passionate about. You don’t have to be a brilliant chef, just a person who really enjoys the journey.
As a Houston native, you might not expect me to be a fan of Asian cultures, but they are some of my favorites to eat and cook! My mother used to take my sister Kristen and I to the Dumpling King as kids. Something about the flavors (and let’s be honest the shape) of those dumplings were so exciting to me. That enthusiasm led me to want to explore cultures through food
MY LIFE NOW
After graduating from The University of Texas and working as a teacher, I moved to Dallas in 2012 and married the love of my life, Worth, the same year. In 2013, we welcomed our first daughter, Sheridan, followed by her little sister, Greer in 2015. If you’re a mother, you know it’s a full time job, so I keep my focus on them, Worth, and cooking the best meals for them.
My mother is an avid entertainer, so whether a gathering is big or small, I always offer up my best to my guests. For example, empanadas or dumplings aren’t something you see at a house party every day, so when I lay them out, people want are always impressed. Our secret will be that they’re not that hard to make.
Now that you know about me, let’s get on to my tips and tricks.
First, I dedicate this to my family. Thank you to my husband Worth and two daughters Sheridan and Greer for cleaning up my messes, putting up with me during flustered moments, and being my Guinea pigs (there have been some last minute Dominos orders).
Also, I’d like to honor my dad for teaching me the beauty in the process making a meal with my own two hands. You will always be my favorite recipe sounding board.
Finally, to my dear friend gone too soon, Grant Gordon. A James Beard semi-finalist and named to the Forbes 30 under 30 list for Food and Wine, I’m sure you are snickering at my “cute” little website right now. I cherish our dorky conversations about “nuts” Wagyu beef and the proper way to peel garlic.
For those of you who didn’t know Grant, I have to share his story.
The youngest of three children in Houston, Grant was encouraged by his family and friends to pursue his dream of becoming a chef.
After high school, he set off for the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park where he won the respect of his peers with his skills and became the group’s leader. He went on to hone his skills at famed restaurants in New York and Napa Valley before returning to his hometown of Houston.
HE WAS THAT GOOD
After only 3 month of working at the most prominent restaurant in town, Tony Vallone’s, Grant ascended from Line Cook to Executive Chef.
Many acclaims quickly followed: James Beard semi-finalist, a very rare 4-star review from the Houston Chronicle, the Forbes 30 under 30 list for Food and Wine, numerous local recognitions and, in the spring of 2014, a selection by the U.S. State Department as a culinary diplomat to the Philippines.
In the summer of 2014, at the age of 28, Grant was preparing to open his first restaurant, The Edmont, in a prime Houston location. It is at The Edmont where Grant’s passion for culinary excellence and service was to be realized as part of his meticulously curated vision.
In April of that same year, Grant was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. He remained the active, passionate, and overall happy person he had always been and battled his health issues with the same ardor he exhibited in the kitchen. He made lifestyle changes and sought out help in every facet to deal with the disease and its associated depression. However, MS is a neurological disease, which causes physiological changes to the brain for which there can be a host of complicated and devastating effects. On August 25th, four months after his diagnosis, Grant committed suicide leaving his family and peers blindsided and confused. Though his life was tragically cut short, his legacy as a gifted chef, his devotion to service, and his giving spirit continue to live on.
GIVE LIKE GRANT
As a chef, Grant took pleasure in indulging everyone who sat down at his tables. He put every piece of himself on the plate. His generosity didn’t stop there. Beyond the kitchen, he was involved in numerous charities across Houston. These causes ranged from volunteer work at children’s organizations to the Houston Food Bank to the Holocaust Museum.
The Grant Gordon Foundation will continue Grant’s legacy of service and reflect his health consciousness by addressing issues in the medical field which further suicide prevention amongst those suffering from neurological diseases such as MS.