What was your favorite recipe segment to film for the 2017 season?
The strawberry jam. I thought that was really exciting to do for our viewers. Canning is kind of this mysterious project to a lot of people, and we had never done it on the show. We’d always shied away from it, so I was really psyched that we got to do that on camera. There was a lot of preparation that went into that because there was a lot that I didn’t know and that I had to learn so that I could teach everybody.
I do canning at home, but doing it yourself and explaining the process and the science behind it to a national audience is different. We didn’t want to make a mistake, because we wanted to make sure everyone does it safely at home. So I wanted to make sure the information was crystal clear and accurate. But I was really, really excited for that segment. Julia was too; we had a lot of fun with that one.
What, in your estimation, is the most interesting part of the filming process? Something that our fans don’t get a glimpse of when they’re watching at home.
I think everything that happens in what we call our “back kitchen” is really interesting. There’s a whole team of people cooking behind us, making what we call “twins,” which are copies of the recipe that we’re preparing. And they’re doing this every single step of the way, so that if I make a mistake—I burn something or forget to add something—there’s someone in the back kitchen that can whisk it out and it looks like everything just went perfectly smoothly. I don’t want to make it sound like we make that many mistakes, but they’re prepared to handle stuff for us when that happens. It still amazes me even after all this time. It’s a huge feat for them to pull off.