I bet that you couldn’t resist and had to find out who’s behind all this. Here we tell you that and other things you may not have wanted to know. Meet us:
Clara Gonzalez: Amateur cook and full-time Internet junkie, Aunt Clara was not really anyone’s aunt at the time this all started, but she needed a catchy nom de plume for a website about cooking. Clara is Dominican, and after quite the zigzagging run through the corporate mill — which started in Industrial Design and ended in International Commerce — she now spends her days as a freelance food photographer and writer, advanced amateur procrastinator, semi-devoted wife to Bo, and Nadia’s Doting Mom®.
You can see Clara’s photography portfolio here. Or enjoy her recipes and photos in this blog.
Ilana Benady: Originally from Gibraltar, Aunt Ilana studied and lived in England for the best part of two decades, mostly managing to avoid the local cuisine. After graduating in Politics and Social Anthropology from the University of Kent at Canterbury, she tried her hand at journalism and travel, finally finding a niche of sorts in international development. Her work at Oxfam’s HQ in Oxford took her to more countries than she could have dared to dream of, including the Dominican Republic which she first visited in 1996. She settled here in 1999, married Dominican photographer Pedro Guzmán, and they now live in Punta Cana with their son Lucas. Nearly 20 years later she is still struggling to master the art of cooking rice Dominican-style. Besides our cookbooks, Aunt Ilana has also authored Expat FAQs: Moving to and Living in the Dominican Republicand Dominican Republic – Culture Smart!: The Essential Guide to Customs & Culture.
DominicanCooking.com, and twin blog CocinaDominicana.com, are a collaborative effort from a pair of friends who share the love for the culinary in general, and Dominican Food in particular. We believe that our cuisine is rich, and that it ought to be promoted as healthy, varied and a reflection of our culture.
These sites were started in 2001 by Clara, Ilana joined-in in 2004. This is the seventh major redesign of our site during those years.
In 2005 our site was nominated to the Arroba de Oro Award to the best Dominican website in the category of Art and Culture. The following year, our sister site CocinaDominicana.com won this award. The same year we published our first cookbook, and in 2007 launched a new edition.
In 2014 our blog was one of the finalists in Saveur Magazine’s Best Food Blog Award in the Regional Cuisine category.
Aunt Clara’s Kitchen in the press
Design, concept, content, and pictures by Clara.* Articles by Clara, Ilana and guest authors.
*Except where otherwise stated.
We give (a damn)
From 2007-2013 with the sales of our now out-of-print book, we supported Plan, a development agency working to improve nutrition in the most economically depressed areas of the country . Read more here.
Things we live by:
- Homemade food
- Frugal living
- Earth-friendly living
- Eating local
- Cultural awareness
- Respect for all people