Even though we met at age ten, it took Brooke fifteen years to get her act together and to realize that Jamie is a really good cook… and easy on the eyes.
James began his culinary adventures at a brunch joint on Pensacola Beach and never looked back. He quickly graduated from biscuit-making to working for James Beard award-winning chef, Frank Stitt, at Highlands Bar & Grill in Birmingham, Alabama. Eventually becoming Stitt’s chef de cuisine, James learned to create refined Southern cuisine through classic French culinary technique and using only the freshest local ingredients. Finally, a move to New York City meant being closer to Brooke and collaborating with two of the biggest forces in the culinary world–Chef Daniel Boulud and Food Network. As a sous chef in Restaurant Daniel’s private dining room, he cooked for presidents and US Weekly A-listers (the celeb factor gets Brooke really excited…) On Food Network’s Chopped and Chopped Champions series, James walked away the first-ever two-time champ. James is currently a chef instructor at the Institute of Culinary Education where he teaches in the career culinary program. After training with European masters in sous vide cooking technique in Venice, Italy in the spring of 2011, he began developing ICE’s premiere Cuisine Technology Program. The program features sous vide, low-temperature cooking and hydrocolloids. It will debut in January 2012.
Brooke dreamed of becoming the next Jane Pauley but, instead, developed into a mini- Paula Deen (that’s what happens when you’re surrounded by a cadre of amazing Southern lady cooks). Soon enough, Brooke figured out a way to combine her two great loves–writing and cooking– by publishing her debut novel with recipes, Belle In the Big Apple (Scribner 08’). The story features a small town Southern girl who moves to New York City in search of a career–and a good meal. Brooke penned the online food column, Full Plate, (think Carrie Bradshaw-cum-June Cleaver) for the New York Daily News. She teaches food media seminars as well as Date Night Couples Cooking classes at the Institute of Culinary Education.
Our cookbook, Just Married & Cooking, debuted in May, 2011, allowing us to get behind a lot of fancy stoves in the north and southeast. Since then, we have cooked with some of the best newbie chefs and newlyweds in the country.
This November, we began working with the great folks behind Safeway’s “O” Organics line of products and Tetra Pak’s eco-friendly packaging. Over the holiday season we will bring our green, healthy-cooking message to everyone from New York to Los Angeles. Tune in to check us out!
Photos by Colleen Duffley