Want to be a Badass in the Kitchen? Follow Cookbook Author Elana Horwich’s Lead

Shop for Authentic Ingredients and Dine in Decadance Thanks to This LA Expert’s Tips

Photography Provided By: Elana Horwich

Expert Name: Elana Horwich
Job Title: Cooking Teacher and Author of “Meal and a Spiel: How to Be a Badass in the Kitchen”
Resident of: Los Angeles
Local Living: Native Angeleno



Via Veneto, a tiny eatery, creates the intimacy ideal for a date. I always get the most sensual dishes: warm seafood salad with a crisp pinot grigio and the super-thin handmade ravioli taster’s plate to share with my date, along with a glass of Nebbiolo. Ask for Simone, the head waiter and sommelier—and tell him I sent you!


Lasagna, Hold the Noodles

To my knowledge, there isn’t anyone in LA who makes lasagna with grilled eggplant instead of noodles [like my No-Noodle Lasagna]. Osteria Mozza, however, makes delicious meat sauces of various types, and it’s worth the carbs to eat the pasta! 


For the Culinarily-Curious

Surfas is a kitchen store that also supplies to restaurants and caterers, which means it has items that you wouldn’t normally find. Plus, they have an international specialty food section. Buy the Valrhona and Callebaut chocolate in bulk!


Cook Something New

There’s a new cookbook store in LA, and it’s also the only one we have. Now Serving is owned by a Filipino-American couple who had a visionary dream for LA while other bookstores were shutting down. Ken Concepcion carries a robust section of Filipino cookbooks, and he will tell you the best Filipino food in LA. 


Enjoy Italy—No Passport Needed

Guidi Marcello is a little-known gem that is actually a restaurant supplier with a tiny storefront. There, you’ll find pasta d’alfeltra (top quality dried pasta), quality gluten-free pasta, taralli (cracker-knots) and a selection of Italian wines and liquors.


3 Places to Shop for a Dreamy Kitchen

1 | Shoppe Amber Interiors (for gold- and bronze-colored flatware and cheese boards)

2 | Gjiusta Goods (for linen napkins and rustic ceramic plates)

3 | +COOP (for tableware with chic ethnic flair, curated by LA local Jenna Cooper)


Where to Shop for Persian Ingredients

Super Sun Market is owned by a lovely older couple who’s happy to help you in your cooking curiosity. You’ll find tons of fresh herbs, pomegranate molasses, date syrup and halva worthy of your sweet tooth.


Where to Shop for Mexican Ingredients Elana Horwich

Northgate is a mega-market of top-quality fresh tortillas and an extensive array of homemade salsas. There are also warmed bins filled with hot tamales.

Where to Shop for Japanese Ingredients Elana Horwich

Nijiya Market is tucked away in Sawtelle, but be prepared to walk into another country. I come for the affordable organic matcha and large packets of roasted nori while I snack on the burdock root and hijiki salads or well-priced fresh sushi and sashimi.

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