When I first met with Sasha Shemirani and Chris Sabat from HDK Media Group to talk about doing the new video for the Personal Chef Approach™, I was floored by how well they understood the PCA and how it works. I guess I’m a sexist, because I often forget the Personal Chef Approach™ is as equally useful to single men, as it is to women with families. I knew I’d found the the perfect production company instantly – they came to the table armed with the right questions, insight, and creative ideas to clarify the technique.
Their enthusiasm pushed me beyond any camera shyness – along with Jess Berrios’ infectiously positive energy on the morning of the shoot. Trust me, the magic of her professional hair and make-up goes a long way towards calming nerves and building confidence. I’d forgotten how great it feels to be pampered and transformed into a camera ready Goddess, thank you Jess!
Meanwhile, PCA member and TV host Aja Dang (check out the beauty in the mirror below – you’ll be watching her host her own television show on FX come September) filled in as assistant production supervisor. It was such an honor to have someone as experienced in front of the camera as she is behind it – to help ensure everything looked great and ran smoothly!
While I was busy being beautified, the guys shot some b-roll of a well stocked PCA fridge. I do practice what I preach, because the last thing I want to do is cook again when I come home from a long day of cooking for clients. The up side to being single? I usually only have to cook once or twice a month since I freeze the extra servings of each meal for future dinners. Larger households can use the PCA recipe scaler to easily double or triple recipes, so they stretch their cook dates too.
Of course Daisy got involved too. She never took her big brown eyes off of food stylist Cindy Pangalos whizzing back and forth – waiting for her chance to abscond with some treats, but Cindy was too wise for that old trick.
To be a great food stylist, you have to have a very steady hand and the patience of a saint. I lack both attributes, so it was a relief to know Cindy would be there! She made sure the set and plated food looked great, so I could concentrate on cooking (and trying to remember everything I wanted to say to you).
Once I was ready for my close up, we did a quick run through of the script, and the cameras were ready to roll. Cooking on camera means having at least two sets of ingredients for each recipe ready to go, as well as the occasional swap out (finished product waiting in the wings when the actual cook time
would be too long). Even though it was our first shoot together, the whole team worked like a well oiled machine, and we got almost all the food in one take! Complete with seductive cheese pulls on the Chicken Parmesan, and mouthwateringly juicy slices of steak.
As you know, I normally do all my own food photos, so it was especially exciting for me to watch my food shot by pros. Don’t worry, I was taking notes on plenty of lighting and other tips, so you can expect future recipe photos to be more enticing than ever.
I showed my gratitude by sending the crew home with plenty of food for the coming week, and Daisy very happily got in on that action too. She certainly knows how to convey the message, perhaps she should star in the next video?
While I ran away on holiday for a few weeks, Sasha and Chis deftly edited what we shot into an end product I am very proud to share with all of you!
Is it clear how the Personal Chef Approach™ can turn your dinner impossible into dinner accomplished now? Feel free to ask any questions you might have, let me know what you think in the comment section below, and please DO be social – share it with all of your friends! Not only do I hope we’ve cured your kitchen phobia, if we’ve done our job well – you should be hungry too, so I’ll leave you to enjoy my Chicken Parmesan recipe below…
PS. A HUGE thank you shout out to HDK Media Group, and everyone else involved. You made work masquerade as fun, and certainly delivered the goods!
Savory, aromatic tomato sauce and lusciously gooey melted mozzarella cheese coat each tender yet crispy flavor-packed bite. This classic Italian dish is traditionally made with chicken, veal, or even eggplant for the vegetarians in your life, but I like to switch it up a bit with turkey cutlets occasionally too.