Welcome to Anne Wiles Gourmet
I love to cook. In the kitchen I can unleash my creativity and nurture the people I love at the same time. Cooking is joy.
My first professional gig was at a fishermen’s café in Gig Harbor, after which I shipped out as the cook on a longline salmon boat fishing off Alaska. I baked constantly for my fellow yoga students in LA and catered for movie stars and Olympic skiers at Sun Valley Catering in Idaho.
After six years as the sous-chef at La Ferme, the classic French restaurant in Genoa, and a stint as the executive chef at the historic Thunderbird Lodge on Lake Tahoe’s east shore, I am currently a "gypsy chef", bringing delicious food prepared from fresh local ingredients wherever the winds of change take me.
Contact me at the email at the bottom of the page to find out if I'll be in your area.
Encourage sustainability. Support your local economy. Best of all, eat fresh and flavorful. These are organic local suppliers whose meat and produce I use whenever possible.
- Rob & Lani Holley of Holley Family Farms, Dayton: free-range eggs and poultry, grass-fed beef, produce
- Marc O’Farrell of Hungry Mother Organics, Minden: regional produce, certified organic plants, herbs, and cut flowers
- Dan & Rachel McClure of Sierra Edibles, Wellington: produce, gourmet Hirataki mushrooms, CSA (consumer supported agriculture) subscription baskets
- John & Leanna Collis of Collis Ranch, Silver Springs: free range pork, beef, lamb, and poultry, Italian and chorizo sausage
- Great Basin Community Food Co-op, Reno: retail outlet for local growers
Recipe of the Month
Caprese Salad with Balsamic Reduction
The taste of summer sunshine on your plate.
ripe heirloom or garden tomatoes, peeled if you prefer
fresh mozzarella, buffalo mozzarella, or burrata
fresh basil, cut in chiffonade
extra virgin olive oil
sea salt or kosher salt
fresh ground pepper
balsamic reduction (see below)
A simple, unadorned, and delicious recipe like this depends completely on the quality of its ingredients. Find genuine field-ripened tomatoes, bright green basil, and the most flavorful olive oil you can afford. If you’re using heirloom tomatoes, a mixture of varieties provides wonderful contrast in colors.
Fresh mozzarella is now available in the deli sections of most supermarkets. Buffalo mozzarella is a richer cheese made from water buffalo milk. It’s available locally at Whole Foods in Reno, at Costco, and by special order (and sometimes on the shelf) at Trader Joe’s. Burrata is a fresh cow’s milk mozzarella filled with a mixture of mozzarella and cream.
All fresh mozzarellas are best used within a couple of days of unsealing the container.
To peel tomatoes:
Cut out the cores with a paring knife and cut a shallow “X” in the skin at the base of each tomato. Have a pot of boiling water and an ice-water bath ready. Drop tomatoes into the boiling water a few at a time, so the water temperature doesn’t drop. After 20 to 30 seconds, plunge the tomatoes into the ice water to cool. Peel when cool, starting from the “X”.
To cut leaves into chiffonade:
Stack 6 to 10 leaves, cut in 1/8 inch strips on the diagonal.
Keep this in a squirt bottle (like a diner ketchup bottle) to drizzle over salads, grilled vegetables, pizza marguerita, roasted figs, grilled lamb, fresh strawberries….
1 ½ cups balsamic vinegar (any kind, nothing fancy required)
¼ cup brown sugar
Bring the vinegar to a boil in a non-reactive pan, turn the heat down to a simmer, and cook until the liquid has reduced by half. Mix in the sugar and continuing until the mixture reaches a syrupy consistency. Watch the mixture after adding the sugar, at this stage it burns easily.