Chef Sandy Squillante

The Kitchen is the Beginning and the End of Everything

Chef Sandy is proud to acknowledge her Italian family kitchen as the inspiration for her television chef success. She grew up in the kitchen, but it wasn’t just about the food. The kitchen meant family and being together. Every Sunday, cousins, aunts, and uncles came together to share love, tears, happiness, and big Italian meals.

Life came full circle in that kitchen. It was the beginning and the end of everything. The kitchen was at the center of engagements, marriages, divorces, births, and deaths. It was the source of the Sunday traditions Sandy keeps with her daughter and the foundation of every experience she shares as a beloved television chef.

“You just pick things up”

In the early 70s, Sandy expanded her cooking skills beyond her family’s kitchen. She worked with a French chef in a Boston kitchen. In Chicago, she learned from a German chef. “You just pick things up,” she explains. “If you want to learn something, you listen to everyone, you learn something every day from that person.”

An Unexpected Chef

Sandy opened her first restaurants when she returned to her hometown. She worked the front-end only until pressed into duty after firing a difficult chef the night before Mother’s Day. The restaurant had 300 reservations so she had to make it work. She called on her friends to help. They pulled it off and after that unexpected success, she knew she could do it.

Chef Sandy transformed herself into a confident cook and television chef by immersing herself in cooking experiences. She watched a lot of TV cooking shows, read cookbooks, and tested recipes. Sandy developed a flair for new American cuisine by experimenting with flavors from the nation’s multicultural melting pot. Her experiences taught her the importance of trying lots of things but adding your own touch to make a recipe your own.

Sharing the Love

Chef Sandy sees cooking as an art form. As the “Romancing the Pan” television chef, she offers her art and her Italian traditions as a loving energy that brings friends and family together. She believes her art can inspire new and experienced cooks back into the kitchen to start their own traditions.