Visiting the Martha Stewart Show

A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of joining the Spice Islands team at a taping of Martha Stewart’s daytime show. It was fantastic to be in New York City and so much fun to return to the show but this time I was worry-free! In 2008 I appeared on the Martha show and made my alfajores with her, and if you think I was nervous you don’t know the half of it. But this time? What a joy it was to be with great people and watch Martha and the show from the front row without worrying about messing anything up!

As a member of Martha’s Circle as well as my involvement with Spice Islands and Martha, I was able to snap some quick shots of the set and partake in a mini-tour before the show began. Let’s have a look, shall we?

This beautiful Christmas tree greets the guests of her show as they walk into the studio. I love the red theme going on here, it’s very seasonal. It also makes me wanna chomp on some candy reallllll bad.

Here’s a quick look into the show’s test kitchen. The kitchen staff prepares the all the food for the television program in here. It’s a real working kitchen which I think is totally cool.

You might recognize this: it’s the main set from the show. And it’s so completely beautiful. I don’t know how many people know this but this TV set is completely functional, from the sink to the fridge to the coolers. All of it. It’s pretty impressive.

Here’s a beautiful display of assorted Spice Island spices. It was the holiday baking show so naturally plenty of spices were on hand.  As a surprise everyone in the audience that day received a gift from Spice Islands. Lucky!

The producers assemble all the ingredients for upcoming segments. These are ingredients for Michael Kor’s Pineapple Upside Down Cake. Yes, please!

A view from the set into the audience. The last time I stood in this spot I was shaking in my boots, it was nice to be able to enjoy the scenery this time!

Getting ready for the show. Could I please live on the set? I totally wouldn’t mind.

If you’ve been to our studio in Long Beach then you know I have a weakness for cutting boards, both vintage and contemporary. I was happy to see Martha’s beautiful collection of cutting boards on the set. Don’t think I didn’t mentally compare our collections, ya know. Martha, your collection is aiiight.

Beautiful spices in gorgeous little bowls. Everything on the set has a purpose, it’s a real working kitchen.

Some beautiful pots and cups decorate the set. I fell in love with the stemware over the espresso machine.

Some happy pears.

There are some spaces the audience will never see, this deep sink is one of those places. And of course there’s a container of Martha’s Clean brand soap there.  I love this soap, it was in the giftbag from a Martha party this past summer.

A delightful honey set up and beautiful bowls of cranberries.

Here’s a shot of the backside of the kitchen island.  As you’d expect, it’s spotless and organized. My draw dropped over the beautiful John Boos butcherblocks that rest on the counter. And those ovens? Yes, they work! And notice the backwards kitchen mixer? It faces the audience which means you use it backwards.

The November 2010 cover of Living. Those pies!

The set’s back sink looks out onto a beautiful view of New York City. It’s not real, but I’m sure you knew this.

Another angle of the kitchen set.

A few feet down from the kitchen set are other areas. This is the Crafts set, I’m pretty sure it’s modeled after my own craft room at home.

Scissors and looms. Every little thing is in its perfect place, what an inspiration.

Gorgeous fabric, yarn and crafts.

A collection of crafts from Martha Stewart.

Michael Kors was the guest that day, completely entertaining as he baked alongside Martha. I really think he needs his own cooking show. Kors Can Cook?

Getting ready to take my seat, the show is about to start!


Would you believe I wasn’t able to get a good shot of Michael and Martha? But that’s ok, it was an honor to just be there!

After the show Martha took questions from the audience about holiday baking and offered turkey tips. I wish she’d give this turkey a few tips.

Someone has fierce shoes!

Thanks to all the delightful Martha folks and my friends at Spice Islands and C-K. And Vicky, thank you for participating in my Crazy Face photo. You are the best :) And an update: Here’s the clip from the show we attended where Martha bakes with Spice Islands spices. You might learn a thing or two about their vanilla, click through to check it out :)

Spice Islands Flavor Explorer and a Contest!

Sugar and spice and everything nice, right? Well, I’m rather thrilled to announce a partnership with Spice Islands called The Spice Islands Flavor Explorer look closely at their website and you’ll see my lil mug…hi mom!)  I’ll be teaming up with them to provide recipes using their amazing collection of spices and extracts that will be featured on their new blog over at  I’ll also get in my kitchen and have some fun with their pure Vanilla Extract, which is perfect for this time of year. And in case you didn’t know this (because I didn’t at first!) it’s all natural, made without corn syrup unlike other brands. But more on that later.

Now the last thing I want to do is sound like a commercial so let’s get this out of the way: I love them. I love their commitment to quality and their belief system about what they do, but equally important to me are the people behind the brand. I’ve since spent some time with the Spice Islands team and have some really fun stuff in store. I’m looking forward to sharing some really fun and delicious Spice Islands moments with you.

But first (and since we’re talking about vanilla here) I want to let you know that I’m hosting a contest called the Flavor Explorer: Vanilla Challenge. Submit your own original recipe using Spice Islands All Natural No Corn Syrup Added Pure Vanilla Extract for a chance to win $500 and a prize package filled with some of my favorite Spice Islands spices and blends. I’ll be selecting 3 finalists, making their recipes here and choosing the final winner so folks, make them good! (Not that I’ll have problems eating just about anything with vanilla since it ranks high up on my list of favorite flavors, you know).

And even if you don’t win numero uno there are still great prizes: the 10 semi-finalists will all get a Spice Islands prize package consisting of Spice Island products. I’m so very excited about this contest but you should head over to Spice Islands to read the official rules and all the legal stuff that you must know about. Once you’re ready to enter you can send your recipe and contact information to

If you have any questions about the contest leave a comment below and I’ll get back to you! Now let’s explore!

The Fine Print:  I’m a believer in full disclosure so here it goes: I am working with Spice Islands to develop recipes as well as host this contest. I am being paid. However, the opinions and statements made about Spice Islands are solely my own without any message being required from this partnership. It’s a spice line I truly believe in, it’s all my own ramblings about them, for better or for worse!