Steamy Kitchen on ABC News Now!


Well, this was certainly a new experience for me – my first interview on national television! Earlier this week, I got to be on a live interview with Meg Oliver of ABC News Now. I had to juggle our schedule a bit to make it fit – I was already scheduled to be in Boston that day to meet with Grace Niwa and my publisher, and it was just easier for me to do a satellite interview in Boston than trying to brave the morning drive from Boston to NYC on a Monday morning. So Grace and I head to Needham’s ABC studio, which ended up to be nothing fancy, just a simple, practical space in an office building. The studio was only used for satellite interviews about twice a week.

I walk into this room – a dark, plain room with two different backdrops – a daytime skyline of Boston and one night time. I sat in an office chair in the middle of the room with the lights turned off, three massive, hot lights spotlighting, a mega-camera pointing directly at me, a small box with wires and knobs right next to my chair – it felt a little like an interrogation!

Behind the scenes at ABC

Okay, so here’s my behind the scenes video that Grace shot for me:

Now you ready to see how I did?

It was a pretty long interview – exactly 7 minutes – and we chat about my inspiration to start my career in food, why I started my blog (it had nothing to do with expecting an audience!) and a bit about my upcoming Steamy Kitchen Cookbook which hits the shelves October 19th.

Apparently, both Meg and I decided that it was poofy shirt shoulder day! LOL! And I love the random stock video cooking shots that they stuck in the middle of the segment – HILARIOUS! Who are those women!???

Meg is so poised, calm, smart and gorgeous. I was a TOTAL SPAZZZ!!

Do you want to know what was going on in my mind that moment my eyes strayed from the camera for a split second?

I was so afraid that ear thing would fall out of my ear because you know, glasses NEVER stay on my face because I’m Asian, have a flat face and don’t have that nice bridge on my nose to keep those glasses perched up and what if I had a flat ear too?? Do Asians have flat ears!? So many times in that interview, I had to resist the urge to use my finger to push that ear thingy in deeper in my ear, but then I thought – crap! would that look weird like I’m randomly stickin’ my finger in my ear? Well, news anchors do it all the time, but usually it’s during a hurricane coverage when they’re out in the middle of the street with hundred-mile-an-hour winds whipping them around. Um, okay, so no wind here in this enclosed studio. Probably shouldn’t stick my finger in my flat ear.


You just witnessed the crazy convo that whizzed through my mind in a split second.


And because I’ve gotten a few dozen emails asking the same questions, I’ll just tickle you with a quick Q&A session:

Q: I heard Meg Oliver say that your book is in stores now! Is it really?
A: No, that was a goof. The Steamy Kitchen Cookbook is available for pre-order from Amazon, but won’t hit the shelves until October 19th-ish.

Q: Do you really get 500,000 page views and 250,000 unique visitors a month? How do you track that? Should I track my stats?
A: Some months yes! I’ve had some kick-ass months where Stumbleupon, eHow and Digg really spiked up my traffic due to a cool post. Generally I hold steady between 300,000 to 500,000 page views per month. Through Google Analytics, I can track that each visitor goes to 3.28 pages per visit. The unique visitors number is incorrect – it should have been 152,500.Β  The best free stats tool that I’ve found is Google Analytics – there are better and more thorough tools out there, but they cost money. And I’m too cheap to pay for them. To answer if you should track your stats on your own blog – well, if you’re highly emotional or your self esteem depends on how many comments you get or how many vistors you get to your blog each day…then, no.

Q: Do you really have flat ears?
A: When I was a little girl, my mom used to tell me I don’t listen very well. I’m blaming that on my flat ears.


While in Boston, I got to enjoy a fab lunch at Myers+Chang, got to meet the Chang part of that equation – the lovely Joanne Chang, also owner of Flour Bakery


And food blogger/writer Jacqueline Church joined us for lunch too – in the photo below – that’s Joanne, me, Jacqueline and Grace.


More on Myers+Chang food in a later post…a sneak peek….PORK BELLY BUNS!

abc-steamy-kitchen boston myers and chang

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Comments 52

  1. [email protected] Cutting Edge of Ordinary

    I’m so proud *sniff*.

    Can’t wait for the cookbook! Amazon pre-order everyone!

  2. lyn

    this is great! congratulations πŸ™‚
    can’t wait to see your book too. and pork belly buns are one of my husband’s faves!

  3. patsyk

    That’s fabulous! I can’t wait for your cookbook to be released, I just know it’s going to be a “go-to” source for me, but also where I can drool over your food photos before drifting off to sleep!

  4. Jennifer

    It was a great interview and I love the poofy shirt. And having had the chance to see that cookbook already, it’s worth every penny, both in recipes and beautiful pictures (that Jaden shot all herself). Congrats πŸ™‚

  5. Gastronomer

    Such an entertaining interview! Congrats on a job well done. Did you get a chance to try Joanne Chang’s sticky sticky buns at Flour? I’ve been dying to try them ever since she kicked Bobby Flay’s @$$ on Throwdown.

  6. Alta

    That was a very fun interview! I was a little distracted by the sudden clip of the old ladies working in the kitchen about halfway through…what was that about? Anyway, congrats, and I’m so excited for you! I pre-ordered your book, so can’t wait until October!

  7. Carolyn

    What a cool experience, great job! Can only imagine how nerve-wracking that must have been! And that color really worked on you, you’re just glowing. Looking forward to the book.

  8. Jackie

    Great interview! I found your story and all you’ve accomplished so inspirational as someone still trying to get my footing in the food blog world. Can’t wait to read the book when it comes out.

  9. GCS

    Oh now that I think about it I do remember seeing those older women in the kitchen and wondering what it had to do with your interview. Too funny.

  10. GCS

    Great interview! I found your story and all you’ve accomplished so inspirational as someone still trying to get my footing in the food blog world. Can’t wait to read the book when it comes out.
    I think I finally figured this out after doing this twice. Hard to teach an old dog new tricks. I meant to ‘leave a comment’ not a ‘reply’.

    With any luck in the future I’ll remember that.

  11. Katie

    How exciting! I’m a big fan of your blog…didn’t know you went to UCLA! Go Bruins! Are you going on a book tour once your book comes out?

  12. Chris

    Great interview, but your comments about it were even funnier! If you ever stick your finger in your ear, I won’t ask.

    I’m glad you prewarned us bout the random ladies grating onions in a random kitchen shot. Although I was still….”WTF?”…when that popped in.

    To find out that you write your blog via voice recognition was mind opening. I never thought about how well that would help and you are right about it being in “your voice”.

    Looking forward to your book, Jaden. I will definitely buy one but am seriously hoping you give us blog readers a chance to buy a signed copy through here:)

  13. nags

    The speech recognition thingie was news! good to know πŸ™‚

    loved the interview, you still looked nervous, in spite of all your experience in front of the camera πŸ™‚

  14. Sarah

    Here is the thing I was impressed by: You didn’t fib when Meg asked what was for dinner tonight. My inclination would have been to make something up, but you just admitted it was going to be dinner out. Way to go!

  15. Carolyn Jung

    Glad you got to meet my buddy, Jacqueline. I met her on a trip to Alaska. She’s so much fun!
    Love your new long ‘do, too! Very glam looking. πŸ˜‰

  16. wmw

    Hey! Congrats…enjoyed hearing you speak. Especially the part when you mentioned about San Francisco ;o). I’m in San Francisco right now and have been enjoying myself tremendously with the sights and food! Soon it’ll be time for me to go back to Malaysia…sob! sob! It was great to see you on ABC news!

  17. Cenk

    Oh Jaden… I’m smiling from ear to ear right now. It was an amazing interview. Your book will be a great success. Can’t wait for October. Congrats!

  18. Pingback: STEAMY KITCHEN WAS ON ABC | Eye'z In The Steamy Kitchen Cookbook

  19. Vanille

    You always make me laugh ! Your flat nose story…can’t help but laugh, maybe because I know how it feels…
    Cool interview !

  20. Lori @ RecipeGirl

    I know I’ve said this before, but you’re a rock star. And you’re SOOOO gonna be on the Rachael Ray show w/ that comparison. Your life just keeps getting better and better!! I want to be Jaden Hair πŸ˜‰

  21. John

    Jaden, That was UBER AWESOME!!! You are made for TV and fame. Cannot wait for the cookbook to come out.
    John (in Buffalo)

  22. joey

    Congratulations on the interview!!! You look fantastic! πŸ™‚

    I can’t wait until your cookbook is out!

    Thanks Joey! -jaden

  23. katiek @kitchensidecar

    so cool to be on tv!

    on another note, i made the momofuku pork belly buns and they are such a crowd pleaser. I was so popular for the few minutes that I passed them out! then they were gone. πŸ˜‰

  24. Jacqueline Church

    Hey there Jaden:
    What beautiful pictures (of course!) I’m trying to comment on all the Blogger Camp sites to stack my odds. My crazy husband surprised me with a new DSLR! So, now I really need to learn what I’m doing.

    Great to meet you. Thanks again for your generosity with your time, your advice, and for the yummy lunch!

  25. The Cooking Bride

    Jaden, you are my hero!

    Once I watched the clip and knew what you were talking about, I could not stop laughing. Those ladies looked like they should be making boiled sauerkraut, not stir fry!

  26. Maria

    I read the part when you said that all yall were staying at mount dora, and that caught me by surprise cuz I’m only about 45-30min. away from there! (it’s cool knowing that I was that close distance wise to a food celebrity! ^.^)
    If I knew about food blogging a few yrs. ago I would’ve stuck to yours even then too, but I didn’t get into it til high school (yea, I’m an amateur young cook who’s still in high school); i was probably still in middle school or the elementary grades when this site popped up
    PS. you’ve prob. gotten millions of compliments on your interview, but i’ll say it anyway, it was FANTASTIC!

  27. Janna

    Congratulations, Jaden! I love the video clips, and approachable aura that always surrounds you. Seattle’s looking forward to your stop during your tour.

  28. Leslie

    Way to go Jaden! So many people try to find fame and fortune by jumping on the blogging bandwagon because because everyone else is doing it — and it never works out for them. You are a great example of a how being true to yourself and using your own voice (literally) and passion can bring success and happiness. (As Joseph Campbell said: “Follow your bliss.”) I’m proud to have discovered your awesomeness before you got all famous and stuff… and can’t wait to get your new book! πŸ™‚

  29. Chandara

    Congrats on landing on ABC Jaden! You were so adorable in the interview…I totally didn’t see any “spazzing out” moments–you were simply being your usual, bubbly, steamy self. I look forward to your book tour!

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