On my last post, about my take on the potato gratins of Melissa D'Arabian, the last Next Food Network Star, I wrote, "And why does she pronounce her name "DEE-Arabian" instead of dArabian?" Well, within a few hours, I received this email: Hi Rosie, I loved the pictures of the potato gratins you made...beautiful! thanks for posting them. :) To answer your very reasonable question....living in France, we did pronounce it dArabian....but once we moved to the US, I found myself "re"pronouncing it DEE-Arabian so darned often when people gave a blank look that I just finally lefted out the pitstop. Life's short....i don't want to spend twenty extra seconds pronouncing my name twice. :) Especially given I have the whole apostrophe thing to deal with after we've established the pronunciation. so there you have it! Funnily enough, our answering machine still has the "old" pronunciation, even though we've been in the US for like 5 years. :) warm regards, Melissa And Melissa was kind enough to write back, allowing me to post her response.And Melissa responded again: I actually see the ten dollar dinner concept as being an addition to the survival concept! It incorporates the very real challenge that many people face....how to make interesting food on a budget. I know not everyone is on a budget, but my hope is have food that is delicious enough that even non-penny pinchers want to make it. (In fact, don't know if you watched NFNS, but I made my potato bacon torte as part of my thousand dollar dinner party...and it costs literally pennies a serving....if it can impress THAT crowd of amazing chefs, well, it's likely to impress most regular folks no matter how inexpensive.) in short, I love the challenge. Is that all I can cook? of course not. But it gets to my roots, and I love it. :) Melissa Rosie to Melissa: May I quote you on my blog? Melissa to Rosie: Thanks for asking...yes you can. would you drop me the link to the post when you're done? have a great day, Melissa Well, shoot. This makes Melissa and me new BFF's! I thank you, Melissa, for taking the time to read and respond. You are a very gracious lady and I look forward to seeing your second season. Congratulations on your success. Now, If I find out this is actually Hairball, from HairballsOnTheCarpetOfLife, pretending to be Melissa, Immona be soooo pissed.
Please feel free to share my note to you with your readers...thanks for checking!! :)Melissa I also asked Melissa another question which has been bothering me:
Hello again, Melissa. I have another question for you. I really liked the idea that your original promo was based on - the Kitchen Survival Guide. Then, the next week for your first show it was all about $10 meals. What happened, if you don't mind my asking? I was very sorry that you were "limited" to $10. You lived in Paris and cooked French food. I would have loved to have seen a show with French cooking in it, embellished by your experiences in France. I felt that the powers that be at Food Network took what could have been a great series and just more or less put you in a neat little box. Sadly, I was disappointed with what FN did. Thanks for your time. Rosie