Wow! Can you believe it? That’s me on the set of the pilot for my new TV show. We started filming last month, and we wrapped it up last weekend — it’s so new we don’t even have a title yet. What is this new show all about, you might ask? It’s about bringing people together for food, connection, and laughter. It isn’t just about cooking, it’s about relationships. We all know that when you entertain, you build relationships with your guests, whether they are old friends, relatives, or perfect strangers. But you also build relationships with farmers, merchants, and artisans. You spend more time at farmer’s markets and local shops, and you get to know the people who grow and raise the food we eat. On this program, we celebrate all the ways that cooking and entertaining enrich the social and emotional aspects of our lives.
Here’s the teaser!
The concept for the show is precisely what I’m passionate about and it’s the lifestyle I live every day. I love having dinner parties and brunches at my place, and I love bringing people together—sometimes people I don’t even know very well—for simple, wholesome human connection over a good meal. So it wasn’t at all difficult for me to have a ton of fun on the set. I loved every minute of it! The kitchen we filmed in was fantastic and the crew was out-of-this-world. Everyone showed up with unbelievable energy and enthusiasm for the project. One crew member, in fact, brought me a cooler full of fresh herbs from his home garden to use on the set. That’s his basil in the foreground of the photo above! Now if that isn’t going above and beyond the call of duty, I don’t know what is.
On Day One of filming, I spent a good hour in hair and makeup, and then guess what happened? I promptly got pooped on by a pigeon. I swear, not a minute after I walked outside. Luckily Mr. Poopy Pigeon only got my skirt. And they say that’s good luck in showbiz, right? (For your sake, I did not take a photograph of this event!)
Naturally, we started filming at the San Francisco Ferry Plaza farmer’s market. The market stalls were teeming with summertime produce: bright green and yellow squash, purple hydrangeas, fire engine red tomatoes, and leafy green basil. I had a blast chatting with the farmers who bring their goods from all over California. We also filmed inside the Ferry Building, where I visited some of my favorite shops: Cowgirl Creamery, Acme Bread, San Francisco Fish Company, Stonehouse Olive Oil, and Farm Fresh to You. These stores are all locally owned and operated, so they are near and dear to my heart as a native San Franciscan. The shop keepers are passionate about their products and extremely knowledgeable; I learn something new every time I stop by to say hello.
Then we headed over to my favorite bakery in all of Northern California, Tartine. I felt it was important to incorporate an element of convenience into the show. Why spend all day making dessert when you can pick something up instead? I’m all about making things easier for myself, so I can be a better hostess when my guests arrive. The gals at Tartine helped me pick out a luscious lemon cream tart — the perfect finishing touch for a light summery meal. And then it was time to head back to the set and start cooking!
Back on the set, I started preparing dinner for eight: salmon with a tomato-nectarine salsa, oven-roasted fingerling potatoes, and some gorgeous green and yellow zucchini. I did most of the work on a grill pan, which made all the food prep super easy. But I won’t give the recipes here, you’ll have to watch the show!
And it couldn’t be a show about entertaining if I didn’t actually invite all my friends over for a party, so that’s just what I did. We dined and drank and laughed until the wee hours, and the film crew caught it all on tape. It was a real party, with real people, amazing food, and genuine connection. We had a really, really good time.
And that, dear readers, is why this show is going to be the best new show on television!