Kimberly Putman, Owner and Chef

kim chefInspired Culinary is the product of my fifteen-year plus background in the food service and fitness industry. Our team of the best personal chefs provides Austinites with a unique and healthy approach to fine dining and eases the burdens of balancing work, personal/family-life and daily activities.

I was raised in New Orleans, Louisiana, the often self proclaimed culinary capital of the nation. Living there provided me with extensive experience and knowledge of world-class cuisine. I am both a certified wellness professional through the Cooper Institute and am certified by the Texas Department of Health in food handling, sanitation and manufacturing.

My passion for cooking and food started at a very young age. My entire family (like most) loves food – of all kinds – and always encouraged my curiosity and adventurous spirit in the kitchen. As a fairly new mother – I can only hope that my son develops the same love affair with food that I have!

Experience working with catering companies and culinary specialists as well as my personal commitment to fitness led me to create healthy menus that retain the wonderful flavors of my childhood. I am primarily a vegetarian, and I find real INSPIRATION using vegetables, grains and legumes in new and interesting ways.

As the business owner, I encourage our entire team of chefs to cook with passion and from the INSPIRATION that really moves them. Each chef hired by Inspired Culinary has the unique ability to both cook with great talent and work professionally inside private homes.

We excel in cooking for those with dietary restrictions and specialize in providing high quality exciting foods for individuals with discerning palettes.

Sarah DeClue, Creative Director and Head Chef

Sarah chefHaving worked under Chef Kimberly at Appetite Culinary Service as a chef for over a year, I decided in 2012 to join Kim to launch a redesign and new branding concept for what has become Inspired Food & Wellness. We are both incredibly excited about our new business plan and are looking forward to sharing it with our existing and new clientele.

I am a Texan, just ask me to speak and you'll know! I was born and raised right here in the Heart of Texas. I have had a love affair with Italian cuisine since childhood, and that love grows to this day. Delicious Tex-Mex is my guilty pleasure while good ol' country cooking flows through my veins.

More recently, I have developed the gift for stir-frys, whole grain & veggie-filled dishes...and even a little baking/pastry work! Via magazines, books, local events, my favorite website/blogs and food TV shows, I stay up-to-date on all of the latest food trends and reports. Supporting and encouraging organic, all-natural and highly sustainable food sources, suppliers and producers is important to me. I am licensed by the Texas Department of Health as a Certified Food Manager.

Over nine years in the food and beverage industry taught me countless tricks of the trade, honed my chef skills and truly helped me be INSPIRED! My friends and family have all been subject to endless recipe testing, but they'll never complain...

Working as a personal chef is a dream come true; menu planning, shopping, delivering and preparing food for others seems to be my calling. I am very passionate about serving healthy, delicious meals to our clients and await the opportunity to do so for you!

Mike Dunlap, Chef

Mike chefMost of my friends and family refer to me as a Jack-Of-All-Trades though they all know cooking is what really gets me going!

I am originally from Iowa and attended The University of Iowa (Go Hawkeyes!). I moved to California over 15 years ago where I began my culinary journey as a member of a start-up team opening restaurants across the Midwest and Southern California. That experience taught me the high demands of fine dining management.

Desiring to further refine my techniques in the actual kitchen, I moved to Austin to attend Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts. While in school I ventured away from the restaurant realm and began working as a personal chef to some very elite clientele. I found a niche in preparing customized menus that require an upscale, gourmet presentation. I participated on the culinary team for popular events like Austin City Limits and Lollapalooza, catering to the dietary needs and special requests of artists such as the Foo Fighters, Dave Matthews Band and Kings of Leon. I have worked in numerous establishments in and around the Austin area holding positions such as Executive Chef, Front-House Manager, Kitchen Manager and more.

I also actively serve on the Texas State Guard, volunteer with Habitat for Humanity all over the nation & Mexico, and spend as much time as possible with my family. I am currently studying to become a Certified Personal Trainer through the American College of Sports Medicine, in order to work with clients on exercise as well as diet.

I find most of my INSPIRATION in the "locavore" & vegetarian concepts that are scattered throughout Austin. Cooking has always come naturally to me. I've been blessed with a gift for grilling & stir-frying. I work wonders with wild Texas game and have some amazing seafood recipes from SoCal. I constantly find myself looking for new ways to excite the vegan/vegetarian palate. It is challenging and I appreciate that!

Kristen Thurman, Pastry Chef

KTI was born in Austin and raised in a small community outside of Waco, Texas. I experienced a fascination with the happenings of the kitchen at an early age. Whether I was baking deserts, preparing entrees, or helping with side dishes, I found delight in cooking and baking.

I attended Texas State University where I acquired a Bachelor's of Science in applied sociology with a minor in political science. While in San Marcos, I discovered a desire to work in a professional kitchen, soon after which I served as the only female chef on the four member kitchen-team at Wesray's, a local café off the square.

Upon graduation, I pursued a meaningful career in state service, and yet, following the 2007 legislative session, I decided it was time once again to focus on my truest passions: baking pastry and developing my culinary skills. This decision led to my enrollment at the Texas Culinary Academy (TCA) in Austin, Texas. As a member of TCA, I refined my skills working under Tony Sansalone, Executive Pastry Chef for the Driskill Hotel, and Christina Hernandez at Sanasolone's pastry shop. Subsequently, I was awarded 3rd place in the American Culinary Federation's Best in Show wedding cake category, and I graduated Cum Laude, holding a Certificate in Le Cordon Bleu Patisserie and Baking.

Following TCA, I became the Pastry Chef with Castle Hill Specialized Fitness, where I developed organic, healthy pastries and cakes. After a successful stint there, I moved on to a freelance career, opting for the freedom to more fully develop my creativity as a pastry chef.

I have held to my conviction that although pastries and sweets are indulgences, they should always be crafted from the best, healthiest, ingredients. I believe that clients should enjoy what they eat, while delighting in the knowledge that their food is good food.

Jennifer Sosler , Chef

jen chefMy professional culinary journey began when I decided to leave my 17-year Executive Administrative career in 2003 to follow my passion for cooking, and enrolled in Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts, where I graduated with honors. I completed my internship and worked in the restaurant, catering and boutique bakery industries, and discovered that I resonate with the more personalized aspects of being a private chef. My true passion is for baking, and I do specialty pies and baked goods on request. Of course, you will never hear my husband or grown son complain about doing taste tests!

I also have a great fondness for animals, and I provide boarding for dogs at "Camp JennJenn" (my private home), and I am also available for other pet care services.

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