WomenCook! 2015 Menu Preview

Women's 11th Annual WomenCook! - Dining for a Difference Event

Menu Preview

Join Work Options for Women on April 27, 2015 for a one-of-a-kind menu prepared by some of Denver’s most renowned female chefs. Here is a sneak peak of some of the participating chefs and dishes they are preparing for this charitable event.

Letisha Steele
WaterCourse Bakery
All Gluten Free and Vegan
Lemon Rosemary Bars
Chocolate Eclair Cakes
Strawberry Rhubarb Tarts
Mary Nguyen
Parallel Seventeen and
Olive & Finch
Bulgogi Beef Lettuce Wraps, Pickled Vegetables and Granny Smith Apples
Dana Rodriguez
Work & Class
Citrus-Halibut Ceviche with avocado mousse and tortilla chip
Aniedra Nichols
Elway’s Cherry Creek
Roasted Beet “Tartare”, Carrot Top Pesto, Grilled Bread Crostini
Jennifer Jasinski
Rioja, Euclid Hall, Bistro Vendôme and Stoic & Genuine
Pea and Ramp Risotto
Salmon Tartare
Lisa Bailey
D Bar
Avocado Fondue with Buttery Brioche Crouton

WomenCook Tickets

Temple Emanuel
51 Grape Street, Denver CO 80220
Monday, April 27, 2015
6:00 – 8:00 p.m.


100% of the funds raised at WomenCook! 2015 goes toward helping Work Options for Women with their mission to help impoverished women gain the skills and confidence they need to work their way out of poverty and become gainfully and permanently employed in the food service industry.


Work Options for Women: Winter Newsletter

Work Options for Women Newsletter

Cafe United

View of Cafe United

Work Options for Women (WOW) opened its third training site in October 2014. The café is located at the new Mile High United Way Morgridge Center for Community Change, at Park Avenue and California Street in the Curtis Park neighborhood right here in Denver. At Cafe United, we serve coffee, breakfast and lunch from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., Monday through Friday. To view the full menu, visit cafeunited.com.

Signature Salads

Cafe United’s Signature Salads



At Cafe United, WOW is able to offer students a higher level of training including barista, catering, and supervisory skills training. By obtaining these additional skill sets, and by having real-life experience in these roles, WOW students will become more competitive in the food service industry and seek jobs that pay a higher wage.
Also, 100% of the proceeds from your purchase will benefit Work Options for Women’s mission to help impoverished women gain the skills and confidence they need to work their way out of poverty and become gainfully and permanently employed in the food service industry.
Support Cafe United on Facebook. Go to http://www.facebook.com/CafeUnitedDenver and click the like button to get the latest news from Cafe United right to your news-feed.

Carrie Shores

Chef Carrie Shores

 Welcome to WOW Chef Carrie Shores
Before becoming the Chef Manager at Cafe Options this past November, Chef Carrie was the executive chef at Table 6 on E 6th Ave and Corona Street in Denver, Colorado.
As the executive chef at Table 6, Chef Carrie earned many accolades, including being admitted into the Denver Five’s exclusive lineup of Colorado’s most-extraordinary chefs of 2014. Chef Carrie is best known for her love of farm-to-table cuisine. In a recent interview with Westword she said, “Let’s focus on real food and real ingredients”, expressing her dislike of fake or imitation foods.
Chef Carrie spent many hours in the WOW kitchen as a volunteer before joining the WOW team, teaching unemployed and disadvantaged women culinary skills. Her mantra “What doesn’t kill us makes us stronger” rings in the minds of WOW’s students learning in our kitchens, her new home. Work Options for Women is very lucky to have her.
Hang out with Chef Carrie on April 7, 2015 for Work Options for Women’s April Cooking Class at Cafe Options. Chef Carrie will be leading the class, demonstrating some of her favorite recipes and answering your questions.
For more information about Cooking Classes at Cafe Options, visit workoptions.org/cookingclasses.

2014 Graduates

Some of the WOW graduating class of Fall 2014

Congratulations Fall 2014 Graduates
This past October, Work Options for Women honored sixteen students who have completed WOW’s Culinary Job Skills Training program and have been employed for at least three months. Each graduate was presented with an official Work Options for Women Graduation certificate and a brand new chef’s knife to get them started on their new career in the food service industry.
We could not be more proud of all our graduates. They have worked hard to overcome past barriers to employment and to learn culinary and job skills like: Kitchen Math, ServSafe and Knife Skills. With their new skills, confidence and chef’s knives, these graduates are fully equipped to be successful in gaining self-sufficiency.
After graduation, WOW graduates have the opportunity to continue their culinary education at WOW by attending Advanced Culinary & Supervisor Skills Training Courses. These courses are designed to help students become more competitive in the food service industry and seek jobs with higher wages and opportunities for advancement.

Receive our next newsletter right at your doorstep.

Sign up here!

Update: Raise $5,161 in 20 days

Thank you, for getting our campaign off to an amazing start!!

We can’t believe we are already over 58% funded after 15 days.

With the funds raised so far we will be able to buy an espresso machine for the new training station!! Thank you for believing in Work Options for Women and for being a part of our mission to empower under-served women through culinary job-training.


We need to raise an additional $2,168 in order to reach our goal of $5,161, which will allow us to complete the Barista Training Station at Cafe United. Please help us keep momentum going in the campaign by:

1) Emailing the campaign link, igg.me/at/WOWforSocialChange, to anyone who you think might be interested in contributing
2) Use the social icons on our campaign homepage to share through Facebook, Twitter, and Google+
3) Add a comment to our campaign homepage and share why you believe in this work!
Thank you again for your support and being a part of the WOW community. Here’s to a successful campaign!

With Gratitude,
-WOW Staff, Students, Graduates and Board Members

Thoughts on Sharing Food

Sharing lunch at WOW

Work Options for Women employees sharing lunch with U of U Alternative Spring Breaks volunteers.

Can you recall a memorable meal? I’m remembering one right now. I was seven years old, and we were having company. My mother put out a little of this and a little of that – olives, crackers, cheese, canned tuna, and pickles. I remember feeling so classy that night because I thought only very fancy people would have something as French sounding as hors d’oeuvres for dinner. Years later, I mentioned this to my mom and learned that it was memorable for her as well, but for a different reason. She told me how at the time we had no money and those many little dishes represented all that was left in our pantry that night.

Another meal that stands out was a first date who made reservations. No one had ever made reservations for me before, and coincidentally he was the one I married.

What is it about food that can bring us together and even make us fall in love? Thanksgiving, backyard barbecues, candlelight dinners, milk and cookies on the first day of school? Maybe it’s the way food helps us to engage our senses or maybe there’s some connection between nourishing our bodies and nourishing our souls. Perhaps it’s as simple as the way food gives us a reason to slow down and spend time with others. Whatever the case, this draw in humans to share food is universal. And, just this year, researchers discovered that it isn’t only humans who bond over food. Chimpanzees who shared food were found to experience a rise in oxytocin, the chemical released by hugs and the one that helps us fall in love with our partners and bond with our children. One interesting tidbit from this study was that it didn’t matter if the chimps were on the giving or receiving end, the oxytocin was released for all who shared. Another interesting finding was that sharing food was especially important for helping chimps to form new social bonds – so, maybe making reservations for a special first date really is a good idea.

Yummy, desset.

Cafe Options Cooking Class goers enjoying dessert with Pastry Chef Samm Sherman.

Food is a big part of our identity at Work Options for Women. For us, food is something everyone needs; and learning how to handle, prepare, and cook food gives our students a chance to become quickly employable in a way that enhances dignity and respect. There is an old cowboy saying that goes, “Only a fool argues with a skunk, a mule, or a cook.” And, it’s true. People instinctively recognize that those who prepare our food deserve to be honored, and being the one who brings the food instantly raises one’s status in a group.

Just as food bonds us together with our family and friends, food bonds Work Options for Women to the community. On May 5th, 2014, Work Options for Women looks forward to our 10th annual WomenCook! fundraiser. WomenCook! will celebrate all of this: the delight inherent in food, the company of good friends, and the way that food continues to create opportunity for our graduates to care for themselves and their families. Stay tuned for more about WomenCook!, and in the meantime, take some time to appreciate sharing a meal with the people you love.


WOW Graduate Series – Stories of Strength

One of the most rewarding aspects of the Work Options for Women program is when we have the opportunity to watch as our students flourish. This week we will profile several of our program graduates. In this series, we allow the voices of experience speak for themselves. These are women who have overcome a great deal and have graciously shared their empowering stories.

Meet Monique, a WOW graduate with an interest in baking and a mom who has made her children proud through her hard work and dedication.