Think one couple running a King Street café and bakery, a catering company, and a personal chef service sounds like a recipe for delicious chaos? You’re right. “We’re always busy, but we have a blast bouncing recipe ideas off each other,” says Jennifer Meintel Parezo, who owns Twenty Six Divine with husband Enan.
A graduate of the Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts in Scottsdale, Arizona, and former assistant pastry chef for Charleston Place Hotel, Jennifer creates all of Twenty Six Divine’s baked goods—including stellar special occasion cakes. Meanwhile, Enan heads up the savory side of things. A Johnson & Wales degree and years of restaurant work—including time as Charleston Place’s chef de cuisine—paved the way for the personal chef enterprise he started in 2006. These days, he cooks for 12 to 18 families a week.
But far less complicated than their schedules is their culinary style. “We believe a great meal doesn’t have to be a science experiment on your plate,” says Enan. “Keep it simple and you can knock people’s socks off,” adds Jennifer.
A perfect-for-spring example? Their lemon-basil crab cakes, which, says Enan, “are easy if you have the right cooking utensils.” For portioning out small, lunch-sized patties, a two-ounce scoop works well. Use a four-ounce version for dinner entrées. To make searing “a no-brainer,” employ a heavy-duty Teflon-coated pan and a pair of silicone-tipped tongs. “Metal utensils will scratch your pan, and tongs are easier to handle the cakes with than a spatula,” explains Enan.