Showing posts with label Dr. Biden. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Dr. Biden. Show all posts

Thursday, September 2, 2010

GMA Friday and The Today Show Saturday!

Hey there! Yesterday we wrapped up taping on my 8th season of Cooking for Real! I've been in and out of a sleep deprivation coma all day, partially brought on by the wrap party we had last night :-). I can't wait for you to see the new episodes and I still have more things to share from my time taping, but I just thought I'd drop in to let you know where you can catch me talking about Labor Day food this weekend. Tomorrow, I'm hanging out with George Stephanopoulos and the gang at Good Morning America on ABC. They invited me to talk about all the food we dined on at Vice President Biden's residence with the troops and I'll demonstrate a couple of my recipes from that day. Catch the full story in Food Network Magazine and here on my blog by clicking the "VP visit" link below this post. Here we are at the event...
Then, Saturday wake up early and catch me with the team at The Today Show on NBC! I have a completely different spread to share and it's actually a preview of things to come on the new season I just finished taping.

Ok, I just wanted to drop in and let you know where to catch me. Both websites will have the recipes available, but I'll put up links over the weekend. Thanks for all your support, it is so neat to continue to join both morning shows on holiday weekends and I know I can't do it without ya! All the clicks, Tivo's, DVR's and "didja know's" that you share with friends and family really matter and I appreciate it. Hope you enjoy the holiday!

Remember GMA Friday and The Today Show Saturday!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

FN Mag VP Visit on stands now!

photo credit for this picture: Steve Giralt.
Hey there! Well it's out!!!!!!!
That's the September 2010 issue of Food Network Magazine out on stands now, or if you are like my mommy, it's in your mailbox. Subscribe here :-). Back in May this year I visited the residence of the Vice President and his wife, Dr. Jill Biden for a very special occasion: A Cookout with the Troops! The entire day was about honoring our war veterans - active duty and retired. The Biden's son served in the war so taking care of the troops is not just something that is important to them politically, they actually understand the needs and concerns because they are affected by what happens in the military right at home. The whole story of how this event came together is in the magazine, but know the focus was more so on the wounded veterans and their families than anything. I know I was there to deliver the flavor, but I also felt honored to have a chance to say thank you in person to some very deserving war vets. The Biden's often visit hospitals caring for our war veterans and on one visit just weeks before the cookout they invited some people they met to join them at home to eat and relax by the pool. I'm sure it seemed like an empty promise to the hospitalized troops, but just weeks later we would all sit pool side and enjoy a moment away from the realities of the day and honor them. Yes, there's a pool at the Vice Presidential residence, thanks to Dan Quayle, he added it during his time in office. Neat little piece of trivia I picked up during the tour. You may visualize the Vice President and his family hanging out at the pool, but I asked how often they actually get time to do that and our tour guide said, save for special events, never. Looks like Quayle had plenty of time on his hands, eh? Anyway, I gave you some behind the scenes stuff right here on the blog and you can catch up by reading the links below...

More Recipes Please May 20th - before the visit, recipe and menu planning.

Chili Chili Bang Bang May 24th - during the visit to Washington D.C., figuring out what to wear.

and ...

Post VP Vittles May 26th - just after the visit.

Now that the article is out, I can share a few more behind the scenes details and pics. Ok, let's start with a fun one! After all of the menu planning detailed in the blog linked above, I got around to telling some friends and family about my impending visit to the Vice President's residence and was surprised at the amount of people that suggested I bring back a keepsake! Ahem ... a 5-finger discounted keepsake!! :-) Funny thing is, it was already on my mind ... like what can I take?? lol Not steal, but would there be a coaster or something or maybe just a great photo that sums it all up? On the ride over to the house I asked everyone in the car if they'd received the same request ... and everyone said "no" and I giggled to myself at how crazy my friends and family are, myself included. No one said it seriously, but I think it's just what people say when you are about to visit the White House or the Vice Presidential residence. "Bring something back!". It reminds me of how people always ask you to bet one coin for them or something if they hear you are headed to a casino. Anyway, the funny thing is as we were getting settled in the pool house to prepare for the day, someone took a trip to the bathroom and came out overjoyed to find this ...
That's me dabbing my lips revealing a soft paper hand-towel stamped with the Vice Presidential seal!!! I took several self-portraits until I got my smirk just right :-). When the discovery was made in the bathroom of this "keep sake" we all crowded in there to look at the neatly stacked hand-towels and I bet each of us were thinking as we stared at the stack of soft white cloths "How many is too many to take as a souvenir?". I took two and still have them pressed between two pages of a book, old school style. I'm not telling if I saw anyone else take any ;-), but it was truly a neat moment. It's almost as if the tour of the house and the garden didn't make us feel like we were there, but the hand towel discovery did. Pretty funny, and I'm sure it is not as bad as stealing Vice Presidential china lol. Has someone actually done that? Why did everyone make that joke with me? Speaking of, there was no pomp and circumstance here, the Biden's are a laid back everyday couple so it was cool to get an email about the event that said to dress casual and prepare to dine on the Vice President's finest "plastic china". Take a look at my fried Beet chips with my newly found souvenir ;-) ...
Here's Steve, Food Network Magazine photographer and a pretty funny guy, getting the food ready for it's close up...
That's FN Mag editor in chief, Maile Carpenter helping out with the light reflector thingy. (Like my technical terminology?) We were a small crew of just 4. Myself, Maile, Steve and design director, Deirdre. Only the day before did I find out my uncle could attend and it was nice for them to invite him over from his job at The Pentagon, he's a war veteran himself and was in need of a break. When I saw our picture in the magazine I was too happy. He's commanded two waves of the 82nd Airborne in our current conflict and both times he was over there, it was hard on the entire family. Small things like saying "thank you" mean plenty and it's even better when there's food involved! Here's my Celebration Trifle waiting in the kitchen to be brought out to play ...
You can see the golden beets all sliced up and ready to fry in the background. They are soooo good fried! If you have some in your garden or at the store, give em a try! All of the recipes I served that day are available in the magazine right now or at A Cookout for the Troops on the website. There are also plenty more photos from the day there as well. I snapped a picture of the set up before everyone arrived ...
Intimate, eh? They are setting up the podium in the background for the VP and his wife's speech and at every table they had one extra empty seat for myself and the Biden's to occupy as we moved from table to table visiting with the troops and their families. Very thoughtful. Also another nice touch was the military band, Country Current, playing tunes for the cook out ...
They sounded great during warm up and when everyone packed in we all agreed the band made the cookout a real party. They were so nice and being active duty military members made it cool to them they were able to honor the war veterans as well. Everyone was just pretty much happy to say thank you in person to people that have made huge sacrifices for our freedom. After the tours, pictures and the band warming up, the honored guests and their families started showing up and shortly after that, the Vice President and his wife arrived to greet us all. I was so close I couldn't believe it! Vice President Biden began with some words and I almost cried, it was so nice to hear someone in such a high position speak the language of a military family member. He was funny, serious and so real. It was refreshing. During his brief chat he offered real commitments he and his wife were dedicated to as far as taking care of not only the war veterans, but their families. He also told of their own son's tour of duty in the Army National Guard and how his deployment to Iraq affected the family. It was a very powerful story that resonated with all the guests. Next, Vice President introduced his wife and Dr. Biden stepped to the podium to speak more about their efforts to assist military members and families struggling after returning from the war. I can't tell you how good it felt to hear them speak so freely and unscripted, it was from the heart and I continue to be so happy about that day. I was truly honored to participate, as an Army brat, an Air Force veteran and an American, I'm thankful for all that the military does to keep us safe, I couldn't say thank you enough to everyone in attendance. Catch the full story in the new issue of Food Network Magazine out now!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

More Recipes Please!

"Please, Sunny, I want some more" - paraphrased from Oliver Twist

Hey there! I've been a bit busy this week with plenty of recipe requests. I'm usually in recipe planning mode at all times. When I cook I jot down some notes in my notebook and when I get time, I transfer my notes to my computer. I do this at leisure and sometimes wake up saying to myself "Today, I'll catalogue some recipes" and I do. I sit on the couch or even yes, in the bed, and I type away for hours with my notebooks at my side. Sometimes I look up and realize I skipped breakfast and lunch and if I don't get moving, I'll miss the window for dinner too. Other times, I prepare and make breakfast and lunch the day before so I can just take quick breaks to reheat. So when people ask what I do day to day, that's my boring answer ... I write recipes. At least I think it sounds boring to others, but to me ... it's bliss. I do my recipe writing on auto-pilot, but when I have a deadline for something specific, I push my personal order of recipes aside and scoot the requested ones to the top of my list.

That's why I've been silent a bit this week ... I've had so many recipe requests that I haven't been able to come up for air! For what? Well, for starters ... I have a product partnership on the way and I'm submitting recipes and tips to them for approval. I also need to finalize recipes for my Atlantic City Food & Wine Festival event. BTW, my party is called Sunset, Spirits and Sliders with Sunny Anderson. It's at the Caesar's Palace rooftop pool on Saturday, July 31st. Get your tickets by clicking on the event title!! I'd love to meet you!

But that's not the biggest stress about my recipe writing this week ... I've been finalizing details of a menu I've worked up for a special event. How special? The military blood in me made me cry when I heard about it weeks ago and now that it's closer ... I'm still in disbelief ...

I've been invited to the Vice President's Residence to cook alongside Navy chefs and feed veterans of war and their families for Memorial Day. I almost need to type it again to believe it, so here goes. I've been invited to serve the troops and their families my recipes at the residence of our Vice President of the United States. Wow. My granddad went to war, my daddy, my uncles ... I'm the only female in my family that joined and I served proudly. It hurts my heart when I see people claim service in a war or even in the military when they were never a part of it. I hold Memorial Day and Veterans Day right up there with all the other holidays and make a note to call my daddy every year on Veterans Day to thank him for his service. I feel pretty honored to even be invited and Food Network Magazine is coming along to take pics for a future issue. In fact, it's the editor of the magazine that is pulling this all together. Can't wait for you guys to see the spread. It all happens next week, so this was the final week to get in my menu and recipes. I made a nod to the garden and even made room on the menu for the Second Lady's dietary needs. Turns out she doesn't do red meat, fine with me!

Want a peek at what we'll eat? I could make a corny national security joke here, but I won't. I won't give all the goods, but take a look at my personal notes I told you about above. They're from my handwritten cookbook and I flipped to this page when looking for ways to feed the troops. I've kept a journal since high school and I'm a lefty, so excuse the penmanship :-). This is what my recipes look like before they get to my hard drive ...
It's my left-brained notes for Honey Mustard Pulled Pork with Apricot BBQ Sauce. It's one of the recipes I'm serving with the help of the Navy Chefs. Somewhere in the haze of transferring it to my computer, I sent this picture to the head of the Food Network kitchens to show them what I was working with and they replied "Looks like a play book, lol". I couldn't agree more. It's my strategy for filling bellies and making smiles :-). Not a tough game, but needs a playbook nonetheless. Fyi, the arrow that is coming from the left page has 2 more ingredients I left out in the first run and made the changes the next time I made the recipe. This happens when developing a recipe. It is many parts before it is whole. Hope you are having a busy week like me, that's good news these days, eh? Take care and ladies, any idea of what I should wear? They keep insisting jeans are fine because it's a cook out ... I don't think so ...