Tanya Tandoc

Food commentator

Tanya Tandoc was a chef, writer, artist and owner of Tanya's Soup Kitchen in Wichita.

When she was not piloting her soup ship, she taught cooking classes, wrote recipes, consulted and was a food stylist for the restaurant industry. She was also a ceramicist, cellist and bellydancer.

Tanya passed in June 2015 and is sorely missed.

sriram bala,flickr Creative Commons

This is a beautiful time of the year, made for celebrating and love and giving and desserts. I don’t normally like sweets, but I have a fondness for bread pudding. I have probably made fifty thousand industrial-sized pans of this treat over the years, in many variations. I still love it.

stu_spivack, flickr Creative Commons

This cold snap makes me think of warm, delicious, lovingly made broths and stews. I love to make soup and I love to eat it. Today, I’m going to talk about soup and the wonderful soups that other people in Wichita make.

Theresa Thompson, flickr Creative Commons

There is so much frightening food available these days—like Twinkies, cappuccino flavored potato chips, and genetically modified foods.

Navigating the grocery store is a bit of a horror story on a regular day.

But, today is Halloween, and have some creepy suggestions for your holiday table.

When I was a kid in the seventies, I went to a party dressed as a hobo, like all the other kids.

We stuck our hands into bowls of peeled grapes (eyeballs!), wet and oily spaghetti worms!), and then ate Vienna sausages (fingers!).

Marylin Acosta / U.S. Department of Agriculture

Finally, fall weather has set in and I’m getting excited about eating warm, savory, heart-warming food. Summer was fun, with tomatoes and basil, and all the beautiful produce, but now I’m ready for comfort food. Fragrant stews and braises, with buttery starches and warm salads are on the menu for this season. 

Tanya Tandoc: CHEESE!

Oct 3, 2014
MetaGrrrl / Flickr / Creative Commons


When I was growing up in Newton in the '70s, I was unaware that there were more than five kinds of cheese.

Arash Razzagh Karimi, flickr Creative Commons

The avocado is one of my favorite fruits. I first tasted one when I was little, in Florida, with my auntie. She had oranges, lemons, limes, and avocados in her yards. We could just pick them from the trees. We went out to gather a few of each, and she made me breakfast with what we had picked.

Steak At Stake

Sep 5, 2014
Naotake Murayama, flickr Creative Commons

We live in an area that really loves beef, especially steak. If one is a beef eater, a good steak is the preferred choice, whether dining out, or when cooking at home. I recently took an informal poll on social media and (like the cheeseburger poll I did last time), received hundreds of excited responses.

Wikimedia Commons

The cheeseburger is an iconic American food. Take a big handful of flattened ground beef, a bun split in two, with salt and pepper. Cook the meat on a grill or in a frying pan or broil it. Melt some cheese on the meat as it finishes cooking. Toast the buns with butter or oil or not. Condiments and garnishes are up to you. Put the cheesy meat on the bun and dress it up, then devour. Seems simple, right?

Elke Wetzig / Wikimedia Commons

Among other things, I am a professional food stylist. I have been doing this weird job for over 25 years.

What a food stylist does is make food look fantastic on camera or video. Yes, it is fakery. Yes, it is somewhat dishonest. Yes, it is great work if you can get it. It pays well and a stylist gets to use her knowledge of food preparation, her skills as an artist, and an understanding of photography. It is very challenging.

Lu Anne Stephens / KMUW

Sushi, the wonderful Japanese preparation of rice and fish, used to be impossible to find anywhere in Wichita. It took a while to catch on here, possibly because of a Midwestern aversion to raw fish.

Now, sushi is everywhere, even in the grocery store. Once a rarity, sushi and Japanese food in general are firmly part of Wichita’s diverse culinary scene.