Food Blogger Unity Forever

The Early Bird Special

If you were to walk by the Chicago Tonight green room last night you would have seen what appeared to be three very different women nervously making conversation over a basket of peanut butter cookies. Had you come inside with us, though, you would have met three people on a similar mission – to de-stigmatize eating and food. To wake people up to the fact that eating for pleasure doesn’t have to be gluttonous or unhealthy but that rather, a passion for cooking and eating can only lead to a healthy relationship with food.

Of course, as I write this, I am eating one of the peanut butter cookies Angie of Angie’s Pantry supplied us with back stage so… don’t cross me off the glutton list too quickly. Seriously, though, meeting Angie and meeting Dana Joy Altman of Real Food Rehab just reinforced what I’ve been feeling for the past few years, since becoming a food blogger myself – food is more than fuel for your body. It’s a unifying force, an expression of love and passion, and it’s a giant ball of yarn for curious cats like me.

Anyway, it was loads of fun to wander the WTTW hallways. For a kid who grew up watching Bob Serat on the morning news it was a total “look, ma, I really made it” moment. You can watch the segment below – and for the record, 2010 is the year of the French macaron, not the coconut macaron. Although I will not say no to one of those, either. (More on that soon when I post my interview with the folks behind Fritz Pastry!) You can findthe recipes for my retirement village-inspired trip of desserts, the Early Bird special on the WTTW site.

Special thanks to Lucky Cupcake Hairclips for my cute red bow and Circa Ceramics for the Chicago flag dinnerware.

PS Tony doesn’t use recipes, so don’t expect his soup recipe anytime soon, sucka.


  1. Unity is so popular these days!! I’m getting together with Baltimore Food Bloggers tomorrow night! It’s good to bring all the love to the table!

  2. Let me just say you are adorable & Amazing! Thank You so much for wearing Lucky Cupcake! Your Support of me and Lucky cupcake means tons!


  3. YES!! I love seeing so many strong women getting passionate about food!

  4. I can’t wait to hear your macaroon recipe. I love them. Traditionally I’ve bought them in Jewish bakeries, but I can imagine the possibilities. Yummmm.
    I loved the segment. Thanks for posting.

  5. i was watching Chicago Tonight, in the midst of a food coma induced by a trip to the Jelly Belly Warehouse, and was happy to see you on here. I’ve not been by your blog before, though i frequent fellow food bloggers, but I love that they picked three completely different perspectives to highlight. It makes such a difference because so many people feel there is a limit to who can make delicious food, how to enjoy it and simply what to make. as a fledgling food blogger, i know this to not be the case and i love the idea of unity through food. marvelous!

  6. Thanks for all your sweet comments! I too am overwhelmed and overjoyed at the vast and diverse number of food bloggers out there – especially in my own city!
    I think it’s so important to get this idea across – that anyone can cook. Obviously it’s not everyone’s bag, and that’s cool! But if you want to cook, or you want to bake and you’re not quite great yet – who cares? We want to watch you learn and evolve! the point is, you’re trying something that could potentially make you feel awesome. So do it.
    Also, I get so sick of “guilt-free” snacks and “all the flavor, none of the guilt!” Food’s not about guilt, it’s about fun. It makes me want to cry that women should feel guilty about loving food. Food loves you, love it back.

  7. Natalie, what an awesome post. I agree that underneath our different lifestyles and looks lies a great and significant connection and it’s all because of food.

    It was a pleasure to hang with you.

    Dana Joy

  8. and being fabulous babes too…

  9. I had a feeling they were going to think coconut macaroons instead of french macaron! 2010 needs to be the year of something more easily veganized. Just sayin’.
    You looked cute, of course! I saw my blog name on the clip! ha.

  10. Since I don’t get to see Chicago stations, except when the kiddos and I visit during the fall, I was hoping to see this linked on your site. :-) That was fun to watch. It sounds like overall you had a blast with both this and cupcake wars.

  11. Natalie-

    You are a true delight and I loved meeting and talking with you. I love your writing and all around style, you are so completely cool.

    It was an honor being on the show with you!


  12. There is nothing more unifying than breaking bread. Great job spreading the word and encouraging our generation to get back in the kitchen.

    Thanks for posting!

  13. the minute she said ‘oh macaroons are easy’ I knew she wasn’t thinking french macaroons. I brought my recipe to my parents house over xmas so my mom and I could make some together. and it turned out that she wasn’t into it. I was so bummed. Le Sigh.
    Well high 5 Natalie! You looked adorable as always and you didn’t say anything dumb *which is what I would’ve done 😉

  14. I love blogger meet ups! It’s always fun to meet the people you read/read about every day online. I just moved to Chicago and knew a handful of bloggers here who were so awesome in helping me get to know the city.

    glad you had a great time!

  15. I was just watching the clip and I thought the same thing Bonnie Rue did when I heard “macaroons are easy!” and as soon as I heard “coconut” I giggled. People always think i’m talking about those kind of macaroons when I say something about um.
    I’ve been dabbling with macaroons for over 2 years now and usually use a recipe from It seems like macaroons are everywhere these days! They are not easy to make so when I see one with the perfect little feet, it makes me so happy! I look forward to “the year of the macaroon” and to seeing them on your blog!

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