We’re here to dish up some help…a little bit about us and our journeys!
We were diagnosed with celiac disease in 2003 and we have removed gluten from our diets ever since. Jessika was diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease the following year and found that living a gluten free lifestyle also alleviated some of her GI symptoms associated with Crohn’s Disease in addition to those associated with celiac disease. Being food lovers and juggling two GI related auto-immune disorders between the both of us, we weren’t willing to give up flavor so we went on a journey to explore gluten free ingredients.
After living abroad for two years, Jessika came back to the United States with a knowledge of certain ingredients in other countries that she was able to find at specialty stores in the United States (such as certain flours and grains). She then started her own baking business, selling delicious gluten free pastries to local cafes and grocery stores in the Baltimore/Washington, D.C. metro area. In addition to pursuing a degree in Culinary Arts, Jessika is a proud new mother of a beautiful baby girl, raising her gluten free until she’s ready to be tested since gluten intolerance is common in our family. When Jessika dreams of free time (it’s sort of non-existent for her, being a full time mom) she likes to read cookbooks and restaurant reviews. Her favorite food is liverwurst with good bread and butter, and homemade gluten free pizza with fresh mozzarella, green peppers, and mushrooms.
Veronika provided regulatory assistance to major food companies working with the USDA and FDA as a third party consultant and reviewed food for regulatory compliance. She assisted with label development/label formulation, nutrition review, claims review, and regulatory interpretation. Veronika also reviewed child nutrition labels for the US school program. This experience gave Veronika an understanding of why food is labeled the way it is in the United States, what goes into our country’s foods, and how food is processed on a larger level. She also noticed that wheat is an ingredient very common in foods in school lunch programs, and this is something parents should be aware of. In addition to her government work, Veronika is also an accomplished textile designer, and her extensive background in art and design inspires her cooking presentation style- she loves her food to look as good as it tastes! In Veronika’s free time she enjoys knitting, finding new music, and creating her own and enjoying others’ art. Her favorite food is authentic Chinese home cooking, either prepared by Jessika or her Chinese food cooking mentor and best friend Jing Wen.