QUICK VOTE by FN Dish Editor in View All Posts, June 4th, 2009
When I first started at the Food Network, I envisioned lively coffee breaks with Giada on slow Monday afternoons. Or maybe shop talk over a toasty sandwich with Bobby in the Kitchens… Though this is not our reality and only some shows tape here in Chelsea Market, I have a few memorable run-ins to share.
I once heard Michael Symon’s distinctive laugh echoing down a hallway and scampered down to catch a glimpse. He’s definitely the Iron Chef with a heart of gold. Another time, I literally bumped into Duff Goldman while taking a corner too quickly. He laughed it off as I stuttered an apology and awkwardly ran back to my desk. Just last week I rode the elevator with Rachael Ray and her husband John – really!
But my favorite star-spotting happened while I was diligently finishing an expense report and heard a familiar voice. I looked up and, lo and behold, there was Alton Brown standing right in front of me!
What’s your best Food Network star run-in? We want stories!
~ LT, Production Coordinator
We took a quick poll around the office…
Alexis (runs FineLiving.com) — resolution:
Less take-out, more big-batch, healthy cooking on the weekends. Update: So far, so good. Alexis whipped up Giada De Laurentiis’ tasty lentil soup and has been enjoying all week.
Danielle (FN’s interactive marketing guru) — resolution:
Fewer processed frozen meals and more packed lunches. Update: Has fallen off the wagon twice this week with her frozen faves — but hey, there was a sale. To boost the healthy factor, Danielle makes her own side salads.
Mark (FN Dish contributor) — resolution:
Bank more green with bag lunches versus pricey pre-made sandwiches. Sense a theme here? Update: Three for three this week — two hand-rolled turkey wraps and one amazing pot of chili (inspired by some great tips and enhanced with his secret weapon — chocolate!).
Emily (FoodNetworkStore.com) — resolution:
Less coffee! Loves the taste, hates the jitters. Update: Tea and tea only for over a week! She attributes her mighty resolve to the Mighty Leaf variety pack.
Rachael (FN Dish producer) — resolution:
Joint plan with her boyfriend to give up beer FOR THE YEAR. Update: So far, so good! However, wine is still fair game and Rachael just enjoyed a great sparkling Bonarda from Italy.
How are YOU doing? Hanging tough? Need moral support?
We want to hear your secrets to success (or your downfall)…
And, if you do need encouragement, try the healthy eating tips and recipes on our new blog, Healthy Eats.
Tyler Florence: Best gift — moped as a ten-year old…and then, “…whatever my wife got me last Christmas. Thanks, honey!”
Sandra Lee: Best gift — a love letter from her honey.
Guy Fieri: Best gift — His horse, Rebel was his first thought. However, he changed his answer to his two sons instead.
Alton Brown: A jet from his wife. That’s right, a REAL jet.
Sunny Anderson: Beebee bear from her mom.
Danny Boome: Skiing lessons. Worst gift: Hospital bills after the skiing lessons.
Watch all the holiday memories from your favorite FN stars.
~ The FN Dish Staff
Food Network stars tell The FN Dish what’s on their holiday wish lists!
When people visit Food Network, they are often surprised, and I’ll venture to say disappointed, that they don’t find delicious heaps of food for the taking by our offices. I guess one can rightfully assume that one of Giada’s awesome, mouth-watering plates would just be waiting for them in a grand buffet line. Alas, this is not the case. [We do have coffee though.]
Full confession: I am by no means gifted in the kitchen. New husband will happily attest to this. But I recently tried out Giada’s Florentine-take on sea bass and I cannot tell a lie — it was unbelievably good. You have to try it! It’s so easy and I am now one with the beauty of canned tomatoes…and the magic of flour; a little dusting and the fish tasted just right.
As mentioned, Food Network staffers just baked off in honor of the 12 Days of Cookies. To settle some bets, we’d love to hear which you think turned out the best. Plus, see if you can guess all the FN Gingerbread Stars in the last of the two fan photos at the bottom. Full answers (and the staff winner of our internal taste test) will be posted this Friday in the comments below…
Talk about kitchen envy. Ina now shoots in her elegantly welcoming kitchen on her property in East Hampton, New York. I keep hoping she’ll adopt me. Paula also shoots in her gorgeous and gracious home in Savannah. The Neelys have just begun to shoot in their brand new home in Memphis.
Bobby, Giada, Ingrid, and Aaron shoot in real homes, but not theirs, either because their kitchen wasn’t quite right to shoot in, or they preferred not to. Believe me, I wouldn’t want hundreds of pounds of equipment and dozens of crew members tearing up my kitchen either.
Tyler shoots in a studio kitchen that was designed to resemble the kitchen he had at his NYC apartment, before he moved to California. Giada now shoots in a studio in Los Angeles on a set that is inspired by her airy new home kitchen. Sunny, Sandra, Aida, Anne & Guy shoot either in our studios here in Chelsea Market, or close by.
Please tell me you don’t throw out extra food on your cooking shows.
Not a chance. We work with a fantastic group called City Harvest to donate some of the food to local shelters. Some prepared food goes to feed our crew and kitchen staff. The only food that is disposed of is that food deemed unsafe to eat because it has sat out too long under hot lights.
Why didn’t you respond to my e-mail?
Rest assured we read every single message. But the sheer number — 20,000 a month — means that unfortunately we can’t answer every single one.
That’s it from where I sit.
Today I headed to the kitchens for a legitimate reason this time (not scrounging for leftovers). I was asked to coordinate a little soiree. The reason? We’re celebrating the launch of our new UK Food site!
Whenever I head to the 6th floor (test kitchens and studios) I wonder if I’ll bump into any FN faves. On recent treks, I’ve spied Rachael and hubby, Bobby (he was in all black — very New York), Guy — sporting his signature sunglasses (yes, inside) and Anne Burrell as well. Of course, the best part of any 6th-floor adventure is Clarence, the security guard. He’s a gem who always has a smile ready for me.
Chef Bleifer and I went over options for hors d’oeuvres and drinks. His plan is to incorporate tasty recipes from the new site — synergy! On the menu: prosciutto-wrapped scallops (yum), thai chicken style skewers (double yum) and a blini with smoked salmon (curious). The delicious smells emanating from the kitchens got the best of me.
“What are they cooking?” I excitedly asked. Chef Bleifer encouraged me to take a peek. Sarah Copeland, head of recipe testing (title is actually “recipe developer”) , and team were busy testing for the FN Magazine’s spring issue. They told me I can’t reveal the test recipes, but here’s a hint: think iconic ballpark or carnival food. I didn’t get a taste, but if looks and smells could kill, no doubt the mag will be slaying your appetites come spring. That said, what are you favorite FN Magazine recipes? I’m voting on the Loaded Oatmeal Cookies — to quote my gal Rachael, YUM-O!
~ Secretary Confidential
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