Q&A with Samantha Stier, Mother and Founder of Gourmette Girl
Where did you get the idea to start Gourmette Girl?
My mom, along with assistance from my nana, published a cookbook in 1989, titled GOURMETTE. It was sold in gift shops and specialty food stores all over the country, as well as Bloomingdales! The concept of GOURMETTE was unique because of its format, which was simple, approachable gourmet recipes presented on index-sized cards on a ring! As the third generation of women in my family, extremely passionate about making delicious and wholesome meals for my loved ones, I took the GOURMETTE philosophy and made it into what I like to describe as a modern day, culinary lifestyle brand. It started out with my platform on instagram, sharing what I call “CULINARY CONCOCTIONS” all designed and created by me, through entertaining cooking demos, and has since become a small local retail business through my regular “DROPS,” where customers have access to purchase my line of signature sauces, dressings and granola. All GG retail products are meant to fit seamlessly into the culinary lifestyle - whether you’re a CONCOCTER or not.
How do you balance being a mom and running a business?
I am so grateful to be able to have my own small business without having to sacrifice my main job as a full time mom! I have set up my business in a way that allows me to work around my kids’ hectic schedules by designating specific days of the month in which customers can reserve their GG products via the GG DROPS, aka the day that orders of pre-purchased dressing and granola are ready for pick up or delivery. Leading up to the DROPS, customers can go to my website and reserve their dressings and granolas in advance of the order cut off. This allows me to set aside the days I need for production, as well as recipe and content creation.
What are your favorite recipes or meal ideas for busy families during weekdays?
Mostly all of the GG CONCOCTIONS are designed for busy people and weekdays! GG recipes do not require a million steps and can be achieved by (mostly) anyone successfully - even those who may have previously been intimidated by traditional recipe formats and cooking. Nothing with GG ever requires complicated ingredients and things can always be substituted. Generally all measuring is by eye and tastebuds! If you are a loyal GG CONCOCTER, you know I tend to use a lot of the same ingredients in different ways. This is all helps save time and money too!
Favorite family meals that your kids love and we should all make??
The GG ground meat pizza is a popular one and has become a regular dinner staple in many households. Watch here.
Also - my kids are very picky but they always enjoy a simple, yet flavorful salmon like this one. Watch here.
Favorite Meems outfits to dress your kids in for a holiday dinner?
My daughter just turned eight and her style has certainly changed in the last few months! What I love about Meems is that there are still some “mature” options she would approve of :) links are here:
For my son, I love comfort but something that still looks neat and put together. These pieces are in my cart as we speak:
Speaking of holidays, what are your favorite meals or dinner prep tips when hosting a holiday dinner?
This reel shares some easily forgotten tips on how to prepare for your guests when hosting! Watch here.
As a mom (who is not much of a cook), how can I be less intimidated by the kitchen and making meals?
Stick with GG, hunny! The whole philosophy of GG is based on the idea that cooking should never be intimidating, but rather simple, gratifying and fun! That’s why I call it CONCOCTING. It doesn’t matter the steps you took to achieve a delicious meal, all that matters is the final result. All of my recipes are meant to turn out successful and delicious, no matter who is following them.
Essentials to keep in your cupboard if you’re gluten and/or dairy free?
This is a long list for me but my go to / most used items would be: a vegan butter alternative, avocado oil, sweetened condensed coconut milk / oat milk, almond flour, gluten free ponzu sauce, gluten free soy sauce.
Tips for getting kids involved in the kitchen and meal prep?
My biggest tip is something I need to also adhere to more as well… when you cook with your kids, let them really do it and don’t stress about a mess or doing things so exact. If some of an egg shell cracks into the mix, try not to make an issue…just pluck it out when they’re not looking. If some extra flour falls on the floor or into the bowl, it should never be a catasrophe! Everything can always be fixed. Kids should feel confident and independent when they’re involved in a recipe. My nana was my biggest influence when it came to this. She always let me DO IT ALL with no stress whatsoever. She always preached “it’s not brain surgery” and you can fix anything by adding a little bit of this or a little bit of that! The more relaxed you are, the better it will turn out - I promise!!!!
Where can we get more of your recipes, dressings, and granola??!
Christine Russell Janis writes about life as a mom of four children, living in Paris, and travel on her life & style website ashadeofrose.com. You can also follow on social media @a.shade.of.rose.in.paris.