Who I Am

I’m Olivia and I’ve been working as a chef-for-hire cooking, baking, and catering the last 18 years for restaurants, camps, conference centers, retreats, weddings, and families. I’ve gotten my culinary education through all the places I’ve worked and though I’ve never been to culinary school, sometimes I want to learn how to make sushi or sour dough from an expert.

What I Cook

Right now I run a private chef business called The Olive Tree. The pay is good and I can work around the needs of my two small children. My menu offers a lot of Mediterranean and Asian flavors, vegetarian specialties, and comfort foods with a twist.

Although it’s exciting following complicated recipes from magazines and cookbooks, I really love cooking with what I’ve got, using some of this and that to create divine new dishes.

What To Bring

I'm going to the shower of someone having her second baby. Aside from wanting to wish my friend well with her expanding brood, a big draw for me is that it's a potluck and a bunch of foodies are coming. They know I'm a professional chef, so the pressure’s on.

I'm going to bring an hors d'oeuvre inspired by a dish I used to make for breakfast: steamed white rice and crispy fried eggs with a dollop of spicy, salty mango pickle from the Asian market. The combination was addictive and led to this invention:

Secret Ingredient Deviled Eggs

  • 12 eggs
  • 2 heaping tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 1 level tablespoon jarred mango pickle (spicy or mild)
  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro

Boil eggs in a pan with water to cover. Remove from heat and cover with a lid. After 10 minutes, rinse the eggs in cold water and peel. Slice them in half and remove (and save) the yolks. Briefly blend the mango pickle, mayo, and eggs in a food processor. Fill the whites with the mixture using two small spoons. Top with cilantro. Serve as is or chilled.

Featured Culinary Schools

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5 Program(s) Found
Le Cordon Bleu Schools of North America , Online (campus option available)
  • Its first location, in Paris, officially opened its doors as a culinary school in 1895.
  • Teaches students by having them spend significant time in the kitchen practicing precision techniques.
  • Provide hands-on training from instructors who are certified, master chefs.
  • Offer flexible schedules and online programs.
  • Has 30 schools worldwide, spanning 5 continents, including 17 campuses in the U.S.
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  • Member of the United States Distance Learning Association (USDLA), the Canadian Network for Innovation in Education (CNIE), and the International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE).
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1 Program(s) Found
  • Offers more than 150 self-paced, career-relevant programs that are connected to a supportive 24/7 online community of students and faculty.
  • Profiled in many publications such as The Boston Globe, Fox Business, and  Inside Higher Ed.
  • Nearly 25,000 graduates each year.
  • Accredited by the Distance Education Accrediting Commission (DEAC).
  • Founded in 1890 in Scranton, Pennsylvania    
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  • The largest independent dog training company in the United States.
  • Offers 11-stage programs that feature an in-home study component along with a hands-on training module.
  • A member of the MyCAA Financial Assistance program, which offers eligible military spouses up to $4,000 of tuition assistance that can be used towards any of their courses.
  • Helps graduates find employment and coaches those who are looking to start their own business.
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  • Online Courses
  • Dedicated to providing a hands-on, career-focused education since 1953.
  • Offers classes online, as well as at 14 campuses across California, Colorado, Georgia, Illinois and Virginia.
  • Develops curriculum with input from employers, subject matter experts.
  • Has small class sizes to promote one-on-one, student-teacher interaction.
  • Makes no-cost tutoring available in every subject to every enrolled student.
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  • Accredited
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  • Students can complete an entry-level technician program in about a year, and manufacturer training and graduate in as little as 18 months.
  • Provides technical education training programs for automotive, diesel, collision repair, motorcycle, and marine technicians.
  • Partners with many well-known manufacturers, including General Motors, Porsche Cars North America Inc., and BMW of North America LLC.
  • Offers internships to students and alumni for first-hand experience.
  • Accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC).
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UEI College , Stockton
  • Dedicated to providing  career training since 1975.
  • Has 13 campus locations in Southern California and a campus in Morrow, GA.
  • Provides flexible class times including weekends.
  • Offers curriculum that ranges from 8 month diploma programs to 16-month Associate of Applied Science degree programs.
  • Has admissions professionals available to help students decide which diploma or degree program they should pursue.
  • Gives job placement assistance strengthened by relationships with local employers.
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  • Accredited
  • Flexible Scheduling
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  • Has students attend one four-week class at a time and take their final exam before moving on to their next class.
  • Offers 24/7 online tech support, with a typical response time of 4 hours or less.
  • Has online help centers that offer assistance with writing, statistics, medical assisting, and more.
  • Provides job placement assistance to all its students and alumni.
  • Researches trends for growing fields to tailor a more effective curriculum.
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  • Accredited
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The Chicago School of Professional Psychology , Online (campus option available)
  • Designated a 2015 Military Friendly School by Victory Media for the 4th consecutive year.
  • Listed on the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll in 2013, for the sixth consecutive year.
  • Links students to hundreds of training opportunities ( beyond their traditional internships and practicum) at their many “partner agencies” in each of their local communities. 
  • Accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC).
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  • Offers training in various types of massage therapy, physical therapy/sports rehab, and personal fitness training & wellness.
  • Teaches in an environment that promotes learning and encourages empathetic and compassionate therapists.
  • Career service professionals work directly with students from the start of their program, and help them pursue employment in day spas, luxury hotels, cruise ships, and other locations.
  • Students can work in the SOCHI Massage Clinic to gain experience and build their career skills.
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  • Students take one class at a time, and can access their courses online 24/7.
  • Approved for the Military Spouse Career Advancement Accounts (MyCAA) program.
  • Has a Clinical Placement department that works to place students in clinical sites throughout the country.
  • Institutionally accredited by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES).
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  • One of the largest massage therapy schools in the nation teaching since 1979.
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  • Has a successful job placement record— 86% of graduates get placed into work in massage therapy.
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Milan Institute , Bakersfield
  • Offers career programs in accounting, cosmetology, massage therapy, physical fitness training, and more.
  • Provides hands-on training led by instructors who have relevant, on-the-job experience.
  • Each campus features a public salon and spa for student practice.
  • Campuses are accredited by the Accrediting Council for Continuing Education and Training (ACCET) and Council on Occupational Education (COE).
  • 11 campuses across California, Texas, Nevada and Idaho, as well as 8 additional Milan Institute of Cosmetology campuses.
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Good for Working Adults
  • Flexible Scheduling
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  • A private, accredited distance learning college based in Norcross, Georgia founded in 1987.
  • Ensures that service members, their spouses and veterans can maximize their military education benefits.
  • Gives students the option to customize monthly payments to fit their budgets and lifestyle.
  • Offers all-inclusive tuition: textbooks, learning materials, and academic support are covered in the cost.
  • Allows alumni to enroll in any future program at a reduced rate.
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  • Online Courses
  • Gives students the option to choose from day, evening, and weekend classes to fit their schedule.
  • Offers public spa and salon services at all campuses for students to gain real-world experience.
  • Provides short specialty programs and workshops open to non-students as well.
  • Has 60 campuses across the United States.
  • Accredited by the National Accrediting Commission of Career Arts & Sciences (NACCAS).
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  • Accredited
  • Financial Aid