Hello and welcome! You can call me Q, and I am an urban gardener who loves to cook. I have spent almost a decade of my life studying how food contributes to the development of complex societies across the globe. Nowadays, I focus on developing simple but highly nutritious recipes from vegetables, herbs, and fruits that I grow from my urban garden in Los Angeles.

What is Urban Garden Chef?

This website hopes to inspire city dwellers to make their food from garden to table. This idea comes from the fact that in this globalized world, our food choices have far-reaching consequences. The production, transit, retail, and consumption of foodstuff is linked to a variety of health, economic, environmental, social, and ethical issues.

With all the food economies around the world, pollution, farm worker rights, and food inequality are some of the important issues that come up. In cityscapes, urban gardens are emerging alongside sustainable living. By growing and cooking your food, you can decrease your carbon footprint and nourish your body at the same time.

My Urban Garden Story

I started my urban garden in 2017 when I moved into a rental property with 300 sq. ft. of outdoor space.  I had no garden experience except for miserably failing to grow indoor plants. Nonetheless, I began to create an edible garden with hopes of providing my household with fresh produce on a regular basis.

When I got started, I had no plans. I didn’t set up any planter boxes or soaker system. I simply bought seeds and seedlings that were in season. After clearing the thick Bermuda grass in my backyard, I planted directly in the ground and watered regularly.

My organic set-up allowed some plants to flourish and some not so much, but I’ve learned a lot from my failed experiments. I have grown a variety of fruits, herbs, spices, root crops, legumes, peppers, and edible flowers. Most days I can harvest enough food for 3 people, and some days I have enough to distribute to my extended family and friends.

My Kitchen Philosophy

I approach food preparation and cooking from a nutritional perspective. When I pick ingredients for my recipes, I am always curious about the phytochemistry of each ingredient. In particular, how the nutrients and compounds in plants affect my body’s functioning.

Vegetables, herbs, and fruits contain nutrients that can extend lifespans, prevent diseases, and even promote mental health. Hence, my kitchen philosophy is:

“The more plants you cook and eat, the better you’ll live.”