Exclusive: Ree Drummond on Her Pioneer Woman Food Network Show

7 years ago

Editor's note: On July 19, The Food Network announced that Ree Drummond's TV show will premiere Saturday, August 27 at 11:30AM ET/PT.

Blogger Ree Drummond, aka The Pioneer Woman, hits the small screen this summer with a new show on the Food Network. From the upfront:

Series Premiere: August 2011

Award-winning blogger and bestselling author Ree Drummond shares her special brand of home cooking, from throw-together suppers to elegant celebrations. This sassy former city girl, her hunky rancher husband and their band of adorable kids invite viewers into their life at home on the range – the next best thing to actually sitting on a stool in Ree’s kitchen.

I caught up with Ree to talk about the book deal, filming a cooking show in her own kitchen and her ideal guest.

Image: © Shane Bevel/ZUMApress.com

How is this show going to be different?

Well, I'm a home cook -- not a chef or culinary professional -- and I want the show to be an authentic representation of my life in the kitchen. I won't be cooking complicated or outlandish things, because that's not how I cook in my daily life. I'll be cooking delicious things that anyone can make. Also, when I write my cooking content for my website, I write it in a conversational -- sometimes slightly irreverent --fashion, and I want to keep that tone for the show. I might break out in a Broadway show tune here and there. (And then again ... I might not.)

In addition, the show will offer glimpses into my life in the country. I've always known that I wouldn't be happy doing a cooking show where I'd just stand behind the counter and cook; I want to share the recipes that work for me, yes -- but I also want to share the fact that sometimes when I'm making my favorite pasta dish, a couple of bulls will walk by the window and give me a dirty look. And sometimes I'll mutter things under my breath, like, "You'd better stop eyeballin' me, boy," and I'll punch my fist like I'm going to beat them up. And those are the things I won't necessarily censor myself from doing, because again: I want this to be an authentic peek into my life in the kitchen.

There will also be regular appearances by country kids, a chaps-wearing cowboy, horses, cows, a cute kitty, and a few very weird dogs, one of which is a belligerent Basset Hound with short man syndrome and an ax to grind. I'm fairly certain this has never been spotlighted on cable.

Will you have guests on the show? Other bloggers? Who would be your ideal guest?

My dream would be to have visits from my foodblogging friends and cohorts, who are without a doubt the most talented, generous, and creative people I know. Of course, I admire many celebrity chefs from afar, but it's my foodblogging brothers and sisters I'd choose to spend a day cooking with. I'd give you a list, but it would be too long; I wouldn't be able to stop. I love foodbloggers so much.

What was it like shooting a cooking show in your home? Did you cook in your everyday kitchen?

The show will take place both in the Lodge, which is a family guest house on our ranch, and in and around our house, which I call The Real World. With four kids, all of our homeschooling gear, all of the laundry and normal, everyday clutter, it makes much more sense for the bulk of the show to be filmed at the Lodge, which is probably the only quiet place on the ranch. I do a lot of cooking up there anyway, so it's natural for the show to be filmed there. But the show will also take place outside of the kitchen -- out on the prairie, on our homestead, etc.

What does success look like to you for this show?

I'll consider the show a success when I hear from viewers that they're successfully using the recipes/methods in their everyday lives. That's the fuel that keeps me going with my cooking website: comments/emails that I've inspired people to cook for their loved ones. What more could I ask for?

A secondary goal is to make people smile, laugh, chuckle...maybe even shake their heads a little. I want to show to be fun. It won't be a cerebral, serious thirty minutes.

How many shows will be in the series? Do you have a premiere date yet?

Details to come! The show should premiere in late summer/early fall.

What Food Network and Cooking Channel shows do you watch regularly?

At this point I will refrain from admitting that I spend most of my free TV time watching Real Housewives... (Wait. I think I just admitted it!)

I love the old school Food Network personalities: Bobby Flay, Mario Batali, Ming Tsai, Sara Moulton, Ina Garten ... they're who I watched back when I nursed my babies.

Was that TMI?

Anything else you'd like to tell BlogHer?

I'm really excited about the show. It'll be fun, and It's something I can do that allows me to cook (and eat!) even more than I already do...and I don't have to leave the ranch to do it.

And with that, I'm going to go get on the Stairmaster...

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