Cook Spotlight

MrsWheelbarrow

April 26, 2010 • 33 Comments

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  • MrsWheelbarrow (at left, with her mom in Sienna) and her winning mushroom soup

MrsWheelbarrow is a landscape designer and blogger living in Washington D.C. who has been a pillar of the food52 community since the beginning. We love her recipes for their precision and clarity, their hyper-seasonality and their humor (see Don’t Tell My Cardiologist Thanksgiving Leftover Sandwich and Swearing Like a Sailor Stuffed Eggplant -- though she promises we'll be cursing the whole way through, we find ourselves wanting to make the darn things anyway). MrsWheelbarrow has won top honors for her Creamy Mushroom Soup, scored finalist status for her Plum Sauced Pork Tenderloin and her Challah, Mushroom, and Celery Stuffing, and landed on our Editors' Pick list more times than we can count -- have we forgotten anything? She also teaches cooking and canning classes and, just yesterday, hosted the D.C. area food52 potluck brunch. MrsWheelbarrow, you are our hero.

See MrsWheelbarrow's profile page and fan her here. Read her profile Q&A below:

  • What is the strangest food you have ever eaten?
    Sea Cucumber in Hong Kong
  • What do you cook when home alone?
    Fresh pasta with garlic, parsley and LeBlanc pine nut oil
  • Your most treasured kitchen possession:
    10" Wustof chef knife
  • Your ideal meal:
    Certainly there would be oysters on the half shell, lamb shanks braised forever, spring peas, mache, shallot vinagrette, great bread, butter, ethereal cheeses, fresh apricots and bittersweet chocolate, espresso and a cookie.
  • Something you'd like a chance to eat or cook:
    Spaghetti Carbonara with Ruth Reichl.
  • The number of bottles of wine you own:
    60
  • The ideal number of guests for a dinner party is:
    6
  • Kitchen pet peeve:
    Leaving the dishwasher door open
  • Your favorite cookbook:
    I rely on Mastering the Art of French Cooking, Classic Italian Cooking, Taste of Country Cooking, Bouchon, and The Cook and The Gardener as well as 3 massive binders of my own, my family’s and clipped-from-magazines recipes.

Comments (33)

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over 4 years ago KelseyTheNaptimeChef

A well-deserved profile. I am definitely in the Wheelbarrow Fan Club and consider her canning cellar the gold standard!

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over 4 years ago 2eatwellRD

Congrats, Cathy! You are an inspiration for sure!

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over 4 years ago Oui, Chef

You're my hero too....congratulations, Mrs. Wheelbarrow!

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over 4 years ago pierino

pierino is a trusted source on General Cooking and Tough Love.

Don't forget that my role model, Calvin Trillin, believes that Spaghetti Carbonara ought to become our traditional Thanksgiving meal.

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over 4 years ago Elycooks

How wonderful! So glad to see you getting the kudos you deserve - you are such a creative cook!

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over 4 years ago Lizthechef

The heartbeat of food52 and a whirlwind in the kitchen and garden, Mrs. W is never too busy to give struggling cooks such as myself her support and guidance. Her razor-sharp humor keeps me, literally, "laughing out loud" and my husband often sees me giggling on twitter and asks, "What is Mrs. Whellbarrow up to now?!" Thumbs up, girlfriend!

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over 4 years ago Veronica

You should see what she does with her "gardening juices" and green thumb! Yes, a true whirlwind with both CREATIVITY and STYLE as her middle names ... Thanks so much, CB.

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over 4 years ago MrsWheelbarrow

Cathy is a trusted source on Pickling/Preserving.

Thank you Liz and Veronica! You're both so dear to me! xo

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over 4 years ago wanderash

Congrats Mrs. Wheelbarrow. Your many contributions to food52 are so wonderful. It is great to see you featured!

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over 4 years ago Veronica

CONGRATULATIONS! May we now call you Mrs. Wonderwoman? You are a star and one we're all so lucky to follow!

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over 4 years ago monkeymom

Great to see you featured MrsW! You and your recipes are very inspiring.

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over 4 years ago coffeefoodwritergirl

Congrats Mrs. WB! I so love your pic with your mom! So well deserved!

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over 4 years ago WinnieAb

You know I just adore you Cathy (if only from afar)...so very happy to see you featured here- proof that we all think you are awesome!

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over 4 years ago gluttonforlife

Congrats, Mrs WB! Long may you reign!

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over 4 years ago TheWimpyVegetarian

Many congrats to you!! I have been enjoying your recipes for a few months now and anytime you want to teach a class out here in CA, I can fill the class for you! You've made such a huge contribution to our community and it's nice to see how appreciated you are here.

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over 4 years ago Frankie57

I had the honor of attending a get-together where I sampled two plum tarts that she made, one savory and one sweet. And someone gasped out, "This is the best thing I have ever eaten in my entire life!"
And pretty much everyone there agreed with that statement!
And she's generous, too - gives out the recipes, so then I got to make a plum tart of Mrs W's for others, and they all thought I was the brilliant one! I hasten to add that I always gave credit where credit was due, though!
Anyway, congrats, Mrs Wheelbarrow! I'm glad to know you!

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over 4 years ago MrsWheelbarrow

Cathy is a trusted source on Pickling/Preserving.

Thanks, Frankie! But credit where credit is due - the first was the Savory Plum Tart by JackieK and the other was Amanda's Plum Tart.

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over 4 years ago healthierkitchen

chardrucks is right - a Renaissance woman ...and a great host! So glad to have met you after enjoying your recipes all this time. Congrats on the much deserved accolades.

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over 4 years ago mariaraynal

I want to go to Mrs. Wheelbarrow's cooking and gardening school. For sure! I'm so happy to see you profiled on food52 - congratulations!

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over 4 years ago katstreet

Love to see DC on the map. Very big congrats!

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over 4 years ago shayma

Many congrats, Cathy!

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over 4 years ago MrsWheelbarrow

Cathy is a trusted source on Pickling/Preserving.

I am having such a nice day! What an honor to be part of this community, to share all your recipes and techniques, your humor and family stories, and worst kitchen disasters, and amazing culinary feats. And every once in awhile, to realize other people are cooking *my* recipes. Bowled over. A&M, this creation of yours is brilliant. Thanks a million.

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over 4 years ago ENunn

Yayyy Mrs. Wheelbarrow! You can cart me around your garden any time!