Giuliano Hazan cooks with the morning stars: An inside look at the Today Show

we then crossed the street and tried to go through the prop door, which is the door that we had been told to go through everytime that Giuliano has always gone on the show. “Not allowed anymore”, we were told. We then went into another entrance and were waived into the labyrinth that houses the Today Show studios.


What is surprising is how tiny the studios are. Although the control room looks like it can launch a shuttle, the actual sets are spaces no larger than most living rooms. The cameras turn so it looks like you are in different places; but for the most part they don’t move much. To get to a set one passes through narrow hallways and staircases. And everyone on the Today Show must get fit from going up and down the stairs.


The food stylist, set designer, and prop master quickly and efficiently worked out with Giuliano what was needed. Their “kitchen” pantry is like a Disneyland for cooks, they must have at least one of everything. Soon we were back out on the street, looking forward to the next day of shooting.


The next morning we met some friends who were supposed to join us at the show. Other than Giuliano showing his id at the first security fence outside, we were never asked to show id again.


Perhaps the biggest thrill was when we walked into the door of the studios. As we walked in the cast was walking out for their “outside” shoot. A very loud and vibrant, “HI GIULIANO! How are your doing?”, greeted my husband from Al Roker, Ann Curry gave him a hello hug and Meredith Vieira and Matt Lauer said, “good to see you again”. It was good to be back. He will return to the TODAY show on January 14th to talk about soups.[image-6]

Lael Hazan, of the noted Italian culinary Hazan family, currently teaches food history at their cooking school in Verona Italy, has a bi-monthly radio show on WSLR, 96.5 fm FOCUS ON FABULOUS FOOD, and teaches for ACEC. For more information check out her family website or follow her at @educatedpalate on twitter.

(Click here to watch the video of Giuliano Hazan on the Today Show.)

Security in New York is serious business. The city is still exciting, the energy stimulating, and the pace can give you whiplash. But the access is gone. Just try and get into the Today Show set and you run a gauntlet of security that makes airport TSA feel like a walk in the park.

Giuliano Hazan, my cookbook author husband, had been invited to do a return segment for the Hot Chef segment on the Today Show on September 10th. As usual, there was a walk-through the day before to make sure that everything he might need would be on the set. Just to get to that walk-through we had to go through two buildings and run the gamut of security. First we passed through a gaggle of onlookers waiting for some star to come down from the studios. We had to give some VERY big security guys the secret code (we are here to do a segment on Today) and finally received clearance to go through the doors to the next security station to get our pictures taken. Even before we could get there we had to explain to other security people what we were doing. Finally, we stood in line to get our names crossed off an OK list, and have our pictures taken for a temporary id.

With our precious badges affixed to our lapels

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