Culinary Artist & Chef
Culinary Instructor | Recipe Developer | Certified ServSafe Instructor & Proctor | Writer | Photographer
B.S. Culinary Management | Art Institute of Houston | Houston, TX
Spanish Influenced Southern Cuisine | Farm to Table | Private Dinner Experiences | Charcuterie Boards | Culinary Subscription Service | Culinary Instruction | Food Safety
My JourneyI am Ranonda Penn, known as Chef Rae in the culinary industry, and the Culinary Artist & Chef of Divalicious Dish. My fascination with all things culinary began when I was 6 years old. I would help my Momma make cakes during the holidays. Of course, the goal was to get first dibs at the beaters. However, I quickly realized it was exciting to see the ingredients come together, give up their talents for the greater good, and make magnificent dishes. From that moment, my passion to learn everything possible about cooking and baking was fully awakened.
Throughout my adult life I have always thrown dinner parties and events to feed my inner chef – Soul Food Saturdays, Stock Up & Wine Down, food competitions, themed dining experiences. For the longest time, I felt if I took culinary from my personal world and made it my professional world, I would risk hating it. Every few years I’d check out culinary school but never take the leap.
After more than 20 years as an IT professional and a layoff, I sold my house and took the plunge full-time into the Art Institute of Houston earning my Bachelor of Science in Culinary Management in 2012. With degree in hand, my entrepreneurial spirit led me to establish Divalicious Dish in 2012 as a catering company. In 2019, we began to specialize in intimate fine dining experiences, culinary subscription service, and virtual cooking classes.