#70: Jodi Taffel – World Champion Bacon Chef
Jodi Taffel Podcast Transcript
Neil Dudley: Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the Pederson’s Farms Podcast. We are so excited you’re here. We appreciate you joining us. And we look forward to sharing these conversations with thought leaders from our industry. They’re going to paint a picture from every perspective, consumer, customer, vendor, employee, and peer, that I think is going to be super valuable and we’re really excited to share. So thanks for tuning in. Remember, don’t tune out and grab life by the bacon.
Pederson’s family, I don’t know any better way to start this conversation than to let you know we’ve got Jodi Taffel, a multiple time World Food Championship bacon category champion. I’m telling you, this is a special occasion for me. I’m super excited she’s here. We’re going to talk about where your food comes from, chefs, where Jodi gets her talent, why bacon, and a lot of other stuff. But first, Jodi, welcome to the show.
Jodi Taffel: Thank you, Neil. Thanks for having me.
Neil Dudley: Oh, yeah, I’m super glad you could find time. Look, she’s busy as she can be. We’re recording this in the middle of Christmas season, and she is trying to keep everybody happy with caterings and those kinds of things. So we found a little window in her schedule. We’re going to talk about it. Now, if you don’t mind, Jodi, tell everybody quickly who you are and why you do what you do.
Jodi Taffel: Well, I’m a nice Jewish girl from Long Island. How I got into bacon is quite bizarre. I’m actually a professional actor in LA. And that means I have a lot of downtime between gigs. And I don’t like to clean, so I started cooking. And I had a really good friend that had entered a cooking competition about 10 years ago, the Grilled Cheese Invitational. And we went and it was really fun. And she won a trophy. And she’s a lovely friend, but she’s not like a fabulous cook. So I thought if she won a trophy, how hard can it be? So I did it the next year. And I ended up winning the whole shootin’ match. So first competition, won grand prize, and I thought, oh, well, this isn’t hard. And that was a grilled cheese competition. And then a year later, there was a bacon competition at the county fair, and I didn’t have a bacon dish, so I just added a lot of bacon to my grilled cheese sandwich. And when I got there, they said, “Oh, the winner of this competition is going to go to the World Food Championships.” And I looked at my at the time boyfriend, and I said, “Oh my gosh, I hope we place second.” And we ended up winning. So next thing I know-
Neil Dudley: Timeout, pause. Why did you say second? You didn’t want to go compete in the World Food Championship?
Jodi Taffel: It sounded daunting. This was my second competition ever. I was like, I’m not good enough to go to a world competition. And then we won. So I was like, all right, there’s the universe doing the thing that it likes to do – putting obstacles in your path until you figure out a way to climb over them.
Neil Dudley: Yeah, that’s so true, and I love your approach to it. I mean, this story is really beautiful to me. Now, maybe if I was a classically trained chef who spent 29 years honing my craft, it might sound like you got lucky. But I want to explore that because I don’t think there’s a bit of luck in it. I think there’s a lot of blood, sweat, and tears that you’ve put into it. So am I right? Or did you just get lucky?
Jodi Taffel: A little bit of both actually. Even in my acting career, I’ve had the kind of luck where I did not realize who I was reading for or who I was in a room with. So I didn’t get nervous. And the same sort of thing happened with cooking. As a matter of fact, there was a television competition that I did, and it was a barbecue- no, it was a grilling competition. It was an episode of Cutthroat Kitchen. And I walked in and I had no idea that the other three people I was competing against were World Champion barbecue competitions. There was Brad Sorenson from the Chef, there was Carrie Sue, who was a judge at WFC this year. And I had no idea who they were. Everybody was sort of like genuflecting at each other going, oh my god, oh my god. And I thought, okay, just three guys. Had I known who I was competing against, I probably would have taken one of my knives to the bathroom and injured myself so that I couldn’t compete.
Neil Dudley: Oh, well, you see, now that’s such a crazy thing because now you’re in their position. Like now, people need to hope they show up and don’t realize that’s Jodi Taffel, so they don’t get nervous and they don’t get kind of starry eyed. It’s funny how life will treat you that way sometimes.
Jodi Taffel: It really is. And I did- I did have some luck also at my first WFC. I wasn’t a trained chef. It was going to be my third competition ever. And here I was, a professional actor, going there’s going to be a lot of cameras there. So that’s where the whole Bacon Babe persona started. And I had the tight dress, low cut dress, and the sash and a tiara. And that worked to my advantage because I heard the other competitors saying, “Oh, she’s all flash and no substance, don’t worry about her.” And then when I made it into the top ten in like fourth place, I heard people saying, “Oh crap, she can cook.”
Neil Dudley: Oh no, she can cook, and she’s smart enough to make it memorable and recognizable. I didn’t know you’re an actor. But that is so- now that paints- that really brings a lot of your persona into focus. Like, ah, that’s the Bacon Babe. That’s where- This is some stuff I want to say yeeha. Like any businessman, women, chef, anybody listening to this, there’s a lot to learn right there. Listen, I’m not an actor. I’m not going to be. But this hat, it makes people remember me. It’s been great for my business. It is me being me. So, that’s I think what you’re talking about.
Jodi Taffel: That’s exactly right. And actually, this last World Food Championships, when the top 10 became present your dish to the judges, a couple of my friends were like, Jodi, you have this in the bag. This is what you do for a living. If there’s one thing that you have over everybody else it’s you know how to talk in front of a crowd and not get nervous about it. It’s actually really true. That’s why I think I did- well, part of the reason I did well at Final Table in 2019, I placed second by a half a point, but I was very good at describing my dish. And I was really, really thrilled this year that that was part of it. Because as if you were- you may remember not, when I was presenting my dish to you guys at the top 10 table, I wanted very much to show you that you weren’t going to see a slice of bacon on my plate but that the bacon was there in ways that you wouldn’t necessarily expect. And that’s sort of my whole thing with bacon. Everybody knows how to cook bacon and eggs. And everybody knows how to wrap bacon around a shrimp. But I like to show that there’s so many other things that you can do with it. It’s not- bacon isn’t just for breakfast anymore. And I was thrilled that I had that opportunity to explain to all of you where the bacon was in my dish because I used six packages of your bacon and you didn’t see a slice on the plate. But you tasted it.
Neil Dudley: Totally. And for anybody listening or watching on YouTube that didn’t- maybe don’t know, I got to sit on The Final Table Judge of the bacon category at the World Food Championships. So I got to totally experience 10 beautiful dishes, all about bacon, using Pederson’s Farms bacon. So it was, I don’t know, just a really exciting thing for me. It taught me a lot. It made me recognize and realize also that ladies like Jodi, the guys that competed, the kids that competed, there was a little gal that does cupcakes, and she’s an up and comer for sure. I mean, she’s totally good. As a brand, we want to have those relationships. I mean, partially, I want your story out to the people that shop Pederson’s just so they can think that same way. Bacon is not bacon and eggs. It can be and it can be great, but it can also be- you had bacon snow, these little balls that looked like caviar. What was that exactly? Could you- do you remember your dish good enough to just tell everybody what you made?
Jodi Taffel: Yes, I do. I made it enough. Yes, I remember it. Well the first place I used the bacon, I made my own tonkatsu ramen broth. And I braised bacon in that broth. Then, after braising for an hour, that got dredged in flour, egg wash, and panko crumbs, but there was also bacon mixed in with the panko crumbs. I had cooked some bacon hard and then I crushed that up as fine as possible, put that in with the panko crumbs. So I did the three part dredge, flour, egg wash, panko bacon. And then because I had so much of the bacon liquid gold leftover after cooking it, instead of frying the bacon in olive oil or canola oil, I fried it in the bacon fat. So we had that going as well. Then I put that on top of my own version of a sweet and spicy Asian chili sauce. And then I took more of the bacon liquid gold, mixed it with a substance called tapioca maltodextrin and turned that into a bacon snow. Top barbecue even mentioned- I’m so glad you said that was snow because I thought it was powdered sugar, and I thought powdered sugar doesn’t belong on that dish. And then just to sort of cut through a little bit of the fat, I made what looked like caviar pearls out of ponzu. But I’ve made and used at World Food Championships before bacon pearls as well. And those two- molecular gastronomy, but they’re very simple molecular gastronomy techniques. There’s other techniques that are more challenging. But again, I had one hour, and I wasn’t going to start doing things that were more difficult.
Neil Dudley: Yeah, sure. How did you learn those things? I mean, since you’ve got in, you kind of were successful at your very first grilled cheese competition, then you somehow kind of escalated to this multi time champion at the World Food Championship. What gives you or what motivates you, what is your reason for even knowing that stuff?
Jodi Taffel: I’m a research girl. I love researching things. And I always want at least one thing in my dish to be something that nobody’s ever seen before, or if they’ve heard of it maybe like in passing, I always want at least one of my competitors to come up to me like, how did you do that? Where did you find that? Where did you source that? How’d you do that? Google is a really cool thing. And when I have downtime – I don’t have a lot of it – but when I have downtime, I’m always on food websites and Food Network. Like most people have the radio on, I have Food Network on in the background. There’s always something interesting going on. And sometimes I’ll get- the inspiration will just be what is the competition asking us to use. My very first year at World Food Championships, they said, if you make it into the top 10, you’re going to have to do something with duck. I had never eaten duck. I had never cooked duck. So I was on a quest to try all different kinds of duck that I could find and then see if I could replicate it. I still do that all the time. As a matter of fact, there are some great ethnic stores in Los Angeles where nothing in the grocery store is written in English. And I’ll walk in and I’ll look around and find something that looks interesting and bring it home and play with it.
Neil Dudley: Yeah, that’s cool. I mean, it’s really- it paints a picture of one way to be a champion. I mean, there’s other ways. I think anybody coming to the World Food Championship to win the bacon championship, well, that’s kind of like going through the New England Patriots to get to the Super Bowl. I mean, all roads go through LA and Jodi’s house, all roads to the championship.
Jodi Taffel: All my neighbors are begging me for a gym membership because they’re eating all of my recipe tests.
Neil Dudley: Yeah, sure. Okay, so let’s talk about a little bit of how you feel about or what you think about where food comes from. So do you pay attention to or how closely do you pay attention to your ingredients, where they come from? Do you think the normal everyday consumer out there really understands where bacon comes from? Do you think you do?
Jodi Taffel: I think I do. Well, I think generally, the average consumer knows bacon comes from a pig. But that’s as far as they know. And honestly, when I’m practicing recipes, I do just sometimes buy whatever’s on sale just to see if what I’m thinking will work. But then I tend to go for what’s organic or what is not- I don’t tend to go for the consumer- like the average brands that you see on every shelf. And I always, always, whenever I buy a new one, because all those bacon’s have something different. I taste them all. I taste everything. I’m surprised there have been competitions I’ve been in where the judges afterwards have said, you’re the only one I saw tasting what you were doing, and I thought, I can’t imagine not tasting what I’m doing. I had six packages of-
Neil Dudley: I think that’s a little bit- I’d just say I think that’s a little bit of the more amateur nature you come from. Like you didn’t really have any other way to know it was good other than your palate. You just had to- like, it wasn’t the technique you knew was great. It was like does this taste good?
Jodi Taffel: Well, exactly. But like I had six packages of your bacon, and some was a little fattier, some was a little meatier. I had to decide which one to use in which particular process I was doing. But as you just mentioned, I don’t have a culinary school background. I didn’t go to school. I am a trial and error kind of girl. As a matter of fact, I was at the grocery store recently, wearing a chef’s coat, and the girl behind the counter said, “Oh, you’re a chef, where did you go to culinary school?” And I said, “Oh, I went to the school of hard knocks.” And she goes, “Is that in Pasadena?” And I thought oh, you’re so pretty.
Neil Dudley: In Texas, we say, well bless your heart.
Jodi Taffel: Yeah, no, I don’t have a culinary school background. And people have always asked me, what’s your biggest strength, and what’s your biggest weakness? And that is both. Not going to culinary school is my biggest strength and my biggest weakness. It’s my biggest weakness because there’s things I know that I don’t know. And it’s my big strength because I don’t have this little voice in the back of my head saying, no, no, don’t do that, that doesn’t work, that won’t go together. So that’s sort of- that’s a lot of whenever someone says, how did you come up with that? I think because I didn’t have a little voice in my head telling me no.
Neil Dudley: Yeah, I had no reason not to try it.
Jodi Taffel: Exactly. I was making, to name drop a little, Asner has a celebrity poker tournament every year, and I got tasked with making a centerpiece, and I thought, oh, I’ll use those little waffles and make little edible poker chips. And I thought I could defy the gods of physics by coloring chocolate with regular food coloring just one drop at a time and whisking really, really hard. Of course, it never worked. And a friend of mine who’s a pastry chef said, “You know they make oil-based food coloring just to use for things like chocolate, right?” And I was like, well, now I do.
Neil Dudley: Right, sure. I did a lot of drops of blue coloring in that chocolate. It never got blue. That’s so just insightful. Where do you think your propensity to be willing to fail- I mean, there’s a lot of stuff I want to- I’m kind of like, man, I kind of want to get back to your childhood a little bit. Where do you get the palate? I don’t have a great palate. I mean, I was judging your food, but I was judging- I know a lot about bacon. I know a lot about making bacon. But I’m not the most taste sensory talented person. Talk to us a little bit about where does that palate come from? Where does your propensity to be fine with failure come from?
Jodi Taffel: Well, my propensity to be fine with failure comes from growing up with a dad who I’d come home with a 98 on a test and he’d say, “Who got the other two points?” So, perfection was always something to try to attain. And the only way to do that is to be okay not getting it. And he was the first one to tell me, the difference between winners and losers is that winners lost more often. So, as far as my palate, goodness knows where that came from. My mother was a wonderful woman and she had a lot of really great qualities. Cooking was not one of them. I actually submitted her for Worst Cooks in America once and they wanted her. And when she found out I submitted her, she didn’t talk to me for three weeks. So I have no idea where the palate came from, but I know my sister got it too. My sister’s the 2015 World Seafood Champion. So yes, I believe we’re the only-
Neil Dudley: Was she there this year?
Jodi Taffel: She did not. My sister, thankfully, is doing wonderfully well, but she has- she deals with cancer. And the pandemic not being over, it’s just way too much playing Russian roulette for her to be in a room full of hundreds of strangers. Her immune system just isn’t ready to handle that.
Neil Dudley: Sure. Well, that’s understandable to kind of just bow out on that one. So I wish her all the best of- I want to say luck, I don’t know if I believe a lot in luck. I wish her the best. I hope she gets to feeling better quickly, in God’s favor and those things.
Jodi Taffel: She’s doing well. She actually just came back. She goes every three months for her scans, and she had her scans a couple days ago and she’s doing great. So, thank you for that.
Neil Dudley: Great, good news. What do you think is the least understood about where food comes from in the general public? Do you have an opinion on that? Do you have a thought on that question?
Jodi Taffel: I don’t know if it’s least understood as much as people not wanting to know. And I get it. I watched that Forks Over Knives movie, and that made me think about being a vegan for a minute and a half. But when you think about where our food actually does come from, you can start to feel like, is it okay to take a life in order to sustain other lives? But that’s the way- that’s the way humankind has existed for as long as we have. And it’s not like it’s not in people’s minds, but it’s hard for people to think about. A hamburger does not look anything like a cow. And a slice of bacon does not look anything like a pig. If it did, if cows and pigs were like this big and we put them on a little toothpick and put it on a tray, people wouldn’t eat it. Because they’d go, “Oh, no, no, that’s a little- that was a living thing.”
Neil Dudley: I mean, it’s so- you just nail this little topic that’s super- I’m passionate about personally. Just I grew up, farm, ranch, that experience. My perspective, my opinion on things comes from that reality, and it is way different than most everybody else’s. I mean, what percentage of people actually had that experience for growing up? It doesn’t make it right or any other thing. It just means I have to understand that. I have to totally understand that. Death is not that big a deal to me. I mean, it doesn’t send shivers down my spine. And I have cried about losing a puppy or kitty cat or that stuff is super emotional. I feel those emotions. It’s not like I’m emotionless. But I value the nutrition, the circle of life, and those kinds of things. I mean, nature-
Jodi Taffel: Circle of life. And with so many of the animals that we slaughter for food, we use every bit of it. I mean, we use the skin to make clothing and we use the collagen. There’s so much in the animal that doesn’t get tossed aside.
Neil Dudley: Oh wow. I’m reading a book right now about the American Indian and the ways they survived and used bison is just amazing with tools that- I mean, could you imagine in your kitchen not having a knife? All you have is like a flint rock knife or something? I mean, and they could do just the most intricate stuff with those.
Jodi Taffel: Yeah. I couldn’t imagine doing it. The closest I got to nature was going to Burning Man and I couldn’t wait to leave.
Neil Dudley: Oh, my goodness. So did you grow up out on the West Coast? Is that- are you kind of a native Californian?
Jodi Taffel: No, good Golly. I’m a New Yorker. I’ve been living in Los Angeles for 28 years. And I still consider myself a New Yorker. I’m a native New Yorker. I grew up in New York. I will always be a New Yorker. I’m a New Yorker that lives in Los Angeles. I moved out here because I was doing eight shows a week off Broadway and still working 40 hours a week in a travel agency and having trouble making my rent. So I thought let me go to LA. Everybody out there is like a blonde, blue eyed prom queen. I’ll be different. Because naiveté. My first audition, I was like, golly, everybody looks like me.
Neil Dudley: Isn’t that naivete kind of actually a gift sometimes, though, because sometimes it gets you where you’re really supposed to be.
Jodi Taffel: Absolutely, absolutely. I said it before, I had no idea I was going up against barbecue gods when I was doing that one competition. I have- I remember being in an acting class and this man that I had never seen before walked in to try and come in. And I was like, no, no, you’re not allowed in here. This is a special private place. And I won’t say his name, but the people that ran the place were like “Jodi, do you have any idea who you just threw out?” It was somebody, it was like an Academy Award winner. But I had no idea who it was.
Neil Dudley: Now, so you’re talking about Off Broadway. Do you sing? Like now we’re totally off food. So if you were here for the food conversation, we’re done. We’re fixin’ to talk about Jodi. Like I’m just curious. I mean, you’re such a dynamic, interesting lady.
Jodi Taffel: Ah, thank you. Yes, I do sing. I started out as a little baby opera singer. I sang with Placido Domingo when I was 15. And even when I moved out to Los Angeles, I’ve done the National Anthem at Dodger Stadium and Irwindale speedway. So yeah, I do sing. I consider myself more an actor that sings than a singer. A record producer who’s a very good friend of mine, he came to a cabaret show I did. And he said, you’re not the girl that I’m going to give a record contract to, but you are the girl I’m going to give the eight o’clock number- I’m sorry, the 11 o’clock number in a Broadway show because you hold the audience’s attention.
Neil Dudley: Did you take classes in New York? And do you have siblings that- were your parents into that? Like, how did you get into that?
Jodi Taffel: My brother is also an actor. And I did, I studied at the Neighborhood Playhouse in New York, at the Royal Academy in London. I’ve guest stared on probably 100 television shows. For a long time, I was the bad guy’s girlfriend. I actually was Danny Trejo’s girlfriend a couple of times. Yeah, Danny is very cool. He’s nothing like the machete character that people think he is. Yeah, when I was- as matter of fact, I was substitute teaching for a while I was working on a Disney show with Zendaya. And that was great because every kid that saw the show, all of a sudden, I was like this superstar that was teaching their class and they acted very nicely and very deferential. And when that started to wane, I would call the executive producer and be like, dude, I need another episode.
Neil Dudley: Can we write me in again or something?
Jodi Taffel: And on television, it’s about food. I played- on that show, I was meatball lady. On another show, I was the home ec teacher. I was still- it still all comes back to food.
Neil Dudley: Yeah, well, I don’t know if this has any merit or not, but as you’re talking, I’m thinking maybe those actor classes actually parlay and turn out to be pretty valuable in a cooking scenario. I mean, because there is some creativity involved. There is some almost writing a script of how your- the recipe writing could be similar.
Jodi Taffel: You are so 100% right. You’re 1,000% right. While I still work in television, I don’t as much only because what they say is true. I turned 40 and Harry Potter’s invisibility cloak seemed to have enveloped me. And then I started cooking, and I realized very quickly, I’m doing art, this is still doing art. Only with this, I don’t have to wait for somebody’s permission to do it.
Neil Dudley: I almost want to make that a mic drop right there. Like there’s so much in life, there’s so much about this conversation that really I think is- go listen back to what Jodi is talking about with kind of the misunderstood piece of food and how people- it could be you, it could be me, we just don’t want to admit some of the truths about food. How can we further that conversation and allow the truths to be what they are, or to really explore what it is?
Jodi Taffel: I think the truths about the food comes from going to a farm, going to a ranch, and seeing the livelihood that’s happening there, it really does help. Out here in Los Angeles, in California, it’s more about crops than animals. But there’s still a lot of- like, there’s cattle farming, and as you’re driving from here to there, you see a lot of it. And I stop. I love to stop and see and talk to people. And if you’re nice and you’re genuine, you end up learning a lot and being invited into areas of places that a lot of people wouldn’t be.
Neil Dudley: Well, I don’t know what part of LA you live in, but our VP of Sales lives in the Valley, Van Nuys area. So if you ever- Okay, so if you ever happen to bump into Britney, Britney be looking for Jodi, y’all should high five. And I don’t know what else to say other than-
Jodi Taffel: Very close to Kardashian country.
Neil Dudley: Oh, see, now that I don’t know. But we were saying something the other day about attention and how important it is really to run a business, to have any business. For you to get a catering gig, you need some attention. For Pederson’s to sell bacon, sausage, ham, our brand, whatever it is, we need to be- we need to somehow have an avenue for getting attention. Somebody said, well, just how can we get a Kardashian to eat a slice of bacon? And I’m like, oh, I don’t know. But that would be like bombs away right there because they have the trick of getting attention down.
Jodi Taffel: Yes, they do. And honestly, LA, Hollywood, it’s not easy to get attention if you’re not a celebrity, or more than that, a celebrity with a drug or drinking problem because that’s what all the news is about, which is sad, but it’s true.
Neil Dudley: That’s right. There’s a lot- I say this, and out there where you live in LA, you can make the circle smaller, but I kind of live out in the country. I say you can draw a circle around me 20 miles in diameter, and there are fun, interesting, cool stories of people you’ve never heard of all over in that little circle. And that’s kind of some of the fun stuff about doing a podcast. I know there’s some PNFers out there that are just now getting to meet Jodi Taffel and are just now hearing about the World Food Championships, are just now understanding, wow, there’s a bacon category. That to me is really cool. So we got some of that information out.
Jodi Taffel: For those people, all I can say is do it, enter a qualifier. Do it. If it scares you, do it faster. Whatever it is, whatever it is the thing that you’re terrified of, jump in. Jump in with both feet.
Neil Dudley: You represent a thing I say a lot, which is do hard things.
Jodi Taffel: Do hard things. My dad used to say, reach for the moon. If you don’t even reach for the moon, you won’t even like grab a star on your way back down. Reach for it all. How many opportunities are we going to get? As far as I know, we get one lifetime. So grab all those opportunities. It became even more clear to me this year, I lost my mom a few months ago, and it was very- like hit me in the face that I’m never going to get to talk to her again. And it just sort of like, when that happens to anybody, I guess, that sort of like makes you stop and go, okay, I’m not sure what I’m waiting for, for whatever that thing is that is frightening me or whatever. What am I waiting for?
Neil Dudley: That’s right. It makes me want to say your time is your most valuable asset. If you’ve listened this long to our conversation, you’ve spent a good amount of your time with us hopefully finding value, hearing something in a way you may have never heard it before. We appreciate you being here. I mean, that is so appreciated. You’re spending your most valuable asset with Pederson’s, with this podcast, with Jodi and I. So thank you so much. Jodi, thank you. Have a great rest of your holiday season. Keep those, I guess, burners hot and ovens warm and get everybody fed.
Jodi Taffel: Thank you. Happy holidays to everybody out there. Eat more bacon. Even us Jewish kids like the bacon.
Neil Dudley: Yeah, that’s right. All right, everybody, come back next time. We’ll have another super interesting person on the show to talk to us about where food comes from and their perspective on that. See you then.
Hey, everybody, thank you so much for listening to this episode of the Pederson’s Farms Podcast. It’s been a blast bringing this to you. And I sure hope you enjoyed it and found value. If you did, tell a friend, share it out on social media, hit that subscribe button, or go check us out at pedersonsfarms.com. We sure hope you do. And thanks for being here.
Can your biggest strength also be your biggest weakness? For Jodi Taffel, the answer is yes! Listen in as Neil is joined by Jodi – multiple time winner of the bacon category of the World Food Championship. They talk about her competition wins, as well as her acting career, and being unafraid to try things until they work. The conversation doesn’t end there; Neil and Jodi offer some great insights into the food industry among other things. Listen in!
(0:30) – Introducing Jodi
(8:58) – Jodi’s award-winning bacon dish
(10:52) – Where did you learn to cook and what motivates you to do this?
(13:19) – How closely do you pay attention to your ingredients and where they come from?
(17:45) – How do you deal with failure?
(19:50) – What do you think is the least understood thing about where food comes from?
(23:11) – Are you from the West Coast?
(24:43) – Jodi’s acting background
(29:33) – The difficulty of gaining attention and the importance of doing hard things