Cooking for Sanity began in early 2015 when wife, mother and general creative individual Samantha Nagtegaal decided to take her passion for cooking and experimenting with new and exciting ingredients to the masses. Sam had been blogging, somewhat sporadically, about sewing and knitting, for several years, but since becoming a mother of two, the time available for such creations was becoming less and less, but she was spending more and more time in the kitchen. Sam set up a blog, closely followed by a Facebook page and Instagram account, and she was astonished to find that, alongside the very positive responses, were the cries, "How do you do that?" "How do you even know what that ingredient is?" and, "How do you have time to cook like that?"
She realised that many people were strangers from the heart of the home: the kitchen. This place of potential creativity and excitement was, to many, a place where it was preferable to spend as little time as possible. Or, if an individual did want to spend more time in their kitchen, they just didn't have that time. She saw that many people were intimidated by trying to cook with unknown ingredients, and stuck to a "safe" repertoire. The thing that struck Sam was that nothing she was cooking was particularly difficult, but because she was presenting dishes in an appealing way, people thought that they would never be able to replicate them, even though many of the dishes didn't even involve cooking at all!
In Sam's head, from what had been an enjoyable necessity was springing something exciting and dynamic, and she decided it was time to expand her ideas by setting up a proper website which she could dedicate to all the associated aspects of cooking, recipe development and assuring people that they can cook. These aspects include:
- How to make your kitchen a haven; a place you can enjoy spending time in
- Empowering people not to be apprehensive about trying an unknown ingredient or experimenting with new cooking techniques
- Tutorials on basic cooking and preparation methods
- Meal planning to reduce waste, including recipe resources and how to use them effectively
Samantha Nagtegaal is a wife and mother with a great passion for eating (as anyone who knows her will testify) and, by extension, cooking! She spends far too much time "around the corner" in her kitchen, surrounded by appliances and utensils, and, of course, food. She is constantly delighting her long-suffering family with her latest creations, whilst striving to ensure they eat a healthy, nutritious and delicious diet.
Sam is passionate about food, believing that natural ingredients are implicitly beneficial, in contrast to refined and adulterated products which are devoid of nutritional value. She feels strongly that the things we eat should be of some benefit to our bodies, and this is simply from a common sense point-of view.
As well as cooking, Sam has a degree in Fine Art (painting) and loves to sew, knit and write her blog. She loves interior design and is not afraid of colour (please refer to the raspberry pink paint in her kitchen..!) She loves to encourage and inspire others, and to make them believe they can achieve something they hadn't thought possible.