Hi, I’m Sam! I am currently in my fifth year of an organic chemistry PhD program at UCLA. I spend most of my time cooking up reactions in lab, but when I have free time I love to cook up delicious meals too. I love FOOD! and eating….and cooking…..so why not start a food blog? Of course my love for food sparked my desire to start a food blog but there are also deeper reasons I had in mind.
I started this blog for many reasons, most of them stemming from my experiences in and out of graduate school. I felt that if I could incorporate things I love (food) with writing that maybe I would be pushed outside of my comfort zone and start talking openly about my experiences. I haven’t completely gotten to that point yet but I know it is a slow process.
One thing I have learned during the last two years of grad school in particular is that reclaiming control is a powerful tool. Often we let our work and progress guide our emotions but it is important to keep a healthy balance and cooking has also been instrumental in this process for me.
There is something so special about cooking for the people you love. When I am in the kitchen I put my heart and soul into everything I make. In my family mealtime is more of an event rather than an opportunity for nourishment. Mealtime in my family means that everyone is going to come together and enjoy delicious food while sharing stories, debating hot topics, and checking in with one another. Some of my earliest memories take place in kitchens of family members.
Chemistry to me is a lot like cooking and reminds me of mixing ingredients for a cake in specific ratios in hopes of a certain outcome. If the cake doesn’t prove a success (or if the NMR shows a different compound), you try again making small changes along the way. Each failure getting you one step closer to success. This is a lot like life events and is a view I currently have of the world. Things may have happened to me in the past that were not ideal, but those things helped me become who I am today. I am learning that self love in who you are right now is one of the keys to happiness.
I am using this blog as a means of communication in many aspects. This blog is slowly teaching
me that it is okay to talk about those tough topics and making some cupcakes or dessert bars along the way can only help! Baked in a Beaker features all dairy and egg free recipes, many of them being plant based and vegan. Since I love food it’s great that I can share the successes (and failures) along the way.