Joanne Weir's Cooking Confidence Debuts

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Teacher and Chef Joanne Weir
Debuts New Public Television Series

« I don’t know that there are many other things I could have done with my life. »

26-Episode Joanne Weir’s Cooking Confidence debuts nationally on January 7

KQED Presents Joanne Weir's Cooking Confidence, Taking Students and Viewers into the Popular Chef's Own Kitchen

Joanne Weir, world-renowned chef and television personality, delivers a brand new series designed to give home cooks the most important ingredient in the kitchen – confidence. Joanne Weir's Cooking Confidence premieres on [insert local listing information].


This new series lets Joanne Weir’s love of teaching cooking take center stage. In her warm and comfortable kitchen, she works with eager students like Joan Boada, a Principal Dancer with the San Francisco Ballet, Ron Martin, a Fire Chief, and Geoff Rubendall, a Civil Engineer, to figure out what is holding them back from making truly good meals. Through 26 engaging and inspiring episodes, Joanne helps her students make a simple mind shift. Flexibility, versatile ingredients, basic techniques, and, most importantly, confidence, are the keys to success in the kitchen. This comes through clearly with mouth-watering preparations of Glazed Pork chops with Orange and Cardamom, Oven Fried Potato Chips, and Fig and Blueberry Salad with Crème Fraiche.

Joanne believes passionately that the question “What’s for dinner?” shouldn’t inspire anxiety. With her encouraging guidance and frequent opportunities for questions, Joanne’s students become visibly more relaxed in the kitchen. Within each show are Joanne’s reflections and remarks along with student “confessionals”. These personal comments provide viewers with an insider’s perspective on the cooking experience.

Beyond teaching the recipes, Joanne pushes students to expand their palates and learn about the cultural significance of different foods, drawing on Joanne’s vast experience traveling and cooking around the world. Influences from recent trips shine through with dishes like Warm Moroccan Chicken and Sweet Potato Salad, Bagna Cauda and Lemon Sorbet and Vanilla Ice Cream with Limoncello.

Joanne is as passionate about wine as she is food and has traveled to various wine regions around the globe to learn more. This is clear on the show with her fun and non-intimidating wine pairings and wine knowledge.

Joanne Weir's Cooking Confidence is presented by KQED Presents and produced by Joanne Weir and Paul Swensen. It is distributed to public television nationwide by American Public Television (APT) beginning January 7, 2012. The 26 programs are underwritten by Grana Padano; Prosciutto di Parma and Prosciutto di San Danielle; the European Union and Italian Ministry of Agriculture, Food, and Forestry; The US Highbush Blueberry Council; Village Harvest; Anolon Nouvelle Copper; CulinApp; and Valley Fig Growers.

Press Updates
5/13/12 - "Joanne Weir from a family of chefs" (SF Gate article about Joanne's background; includes recipes)
5/2/12 - "United by tequila: Duo team up to create Sausalito's new Mexican restaurant Copita" (Marinscope article about Joanne's new restaurant, Copita)
4/25/12 - Joanne Weir's Cooking Confidence has now also been selected to air nationally on Create® TV beginning June 3, 2012!

Joanne Weir Biography
Have you ever dreamed of taking private cooking lessons with someone who could instill a confidence in your cooking skills you never thought possible? Join award-winning cooking teacher and author Joanne Weir as she returns to public television for a new series of cooking lessons with real-world students working side-by-side with her in the kitchen. Shot in Weir’s home kitchen in San Francisco, Joanne Weir's Cooking Confidence ( invites viewers to share friendly, funny interludes with a passionate teacher and willing apprentices in a 26-part series of cooking fundamentals.

A television and cooking school circuit favorite, it is no surprise Joanne Weir was awarded the first Julia Child Cooking Teacher Award of Excellence by the International Association for Culinary Professionals. Inspired by Julia Child years before Weir would appear in her first public television series, Weir Cooking in the Wine Country, Weir’s first book, From Tapas to Meze (Crown, 1994,) was selected as one of Julia Child’s 12 personal favorites out of 1000 cookbooks published that year.
With 6 public television cooking series (Weir Cooking in the Wine Country, Weir Cooking in the City, Joanne Weir’s Cooking Class, Joanne Weir’s Cooking Confidence) and 20 cookbooks to her credit, Joanne Weir is a James Beard Award-winning cookbook author, cooking teacher, chef with a year-round teaching schedule that takes her all over the globe. She has a cooking background that spans four family generations, and five years as a professional chef at the legendary Chez Panisse restaurant in Berkeley, California. She received her Master Chef Diploma in France after studying with Madeleine Kamman. Her ultimate calling has been teaching, and she travels and teaches cooking classes throughout the United States, Canada, Mexico, Australia, New Zealand, Thailand, South America, England, Morocco, France, Italy, and Spain. Weir’s passion for food and love of teaching keep her classes booked season after season.

In addition to her busy teaching schedule, Weir has a full plate of projects launching in fall 2011 through 2012, including the launch of Joanne Weir's Cooking Confidence, the official series companion iPhone and iPad application, available on iTunes, and offered over-the-air in each episode of the new series, beginning in January 2012.

Weir has been named an Editor-at-Large for Fine Cooking Magazine (The Taunton Press), and will be the face of the magazine and contribute on a regular basis.
Joanne Weir Wines will debut in the fall of 2011, with a direct to consumer offering of limited bottlings hand-selected by Weir of California varietals available for purchase through Weir’s email newsletters and website. Exclusive recipes from Joanne Weir’s kitchen will be included with each shipment.

Chef Weir is partnering with Larry Mindel, accomplished Bay Area restaurateur, to launch a new Mexican-inspired restaurant, Copita, in Sausalito, CA, and slated to open March 2012.
Joanne lives in San Francisco where she teaches cooking in her studio kitchen.
Find out more information about Joanne at

About KQED

KQED ( has served Northern California for more than 50 years and is affiliated with NPR and PBS. KQED owns and operates public television stations KQED 9 (San Francisco/Bay Area), KQED Plus (San Jose/Bay Area), and KQET 25 (Watsonville/Monterey); KQED Public Radio (88.5FM San Francisco and 89.3FM Sacramento); the interactive platforms and; and KQED Education. KQED Public Television, one of the nation's most-watched public television stations, is the producer of local and national series such as QUEST; Check, Please! Bay Area; This Week in Northern California; Truly CA; and Essential Pépin. KQED's digital television channels include 9HD, KQED Life, KQED World, KQED Kids, and KQED V-me, and are available 24/7 on Comcast. KQED Public Radio, home of Forum with Michael Krasny and The California Report, is one of the most-listened-to public radio stations in the nation with an award-winning news and public affairs program service delivering more than eighteen local newscasts daily. KQED Interactive provides KQED’s cross-platform news service,, as well as offers several popular local blogs, video and audio podcasts, and a live radio stream at KQED Education brings the impact of KQED to thousands of teachers, students, parents, and the general public through workshops, community screenings, and multimedia resources.

About American Public Television

American Public Television (APT) has been a leading distributor of high-quality, top-rated programming to America’s public television stations since 1961. Since 2004, APT has distributed approximately half of the top 100 highest-rated public television titles. Among its 300 new program titles per year are prominent documentaries, news and public affairs programs, dramatic series, how-to programs, children’s series and classic movies, including For Love of Liberty: The Story of America’s Black Patriots, A Ripple of Hope, Rick Steves' Europe, Newsline, Globe Trekker, John McLaughlin’s One on One, Inside Washington, Simply Ming, Travelscope, America's Test Kitchen From Cook’s Illustrated, Lidia's Italy, P. Allen Smith's Garden Home, Murdoch Mysteries, Doc Martin, Rosemary & Thyme, BBC World News, The Rat Pack: Live and Swingin’, Johnny Mathis: Wonderful, Wonderful! and John Denver: The Wildlife Concert. APT also licenses programs internationally through its APT Worldwide service. In 2006, APT launched and nationally distributed Create® – the TV channel featuring the best of public television's lifestyle programming. APT is also a partner in the WORLD™ channel expansion project including its web presence at For more information about APT’s programs and services, visit For more information on Create, visit

Joanne Weir’s Cooking Confidence Episode Descriptions

Episode 101
Spain on My Mind
Description: Joanne shares with us her emotional connection to Spain. She begins by preparing Salmorejo, a cold tomato and bread soup she first discovered in Southern Spain, and then works with her student Joan to overcome his fear of cooking lamb by preparing a hearty lamb, white bean, and chorizo stew with a spicy infused olive oil drizzled over the top.
Recipes: Salmorejo and Spanish Lamb Stew
Student: Joan Boada, Principal Dancer, San Francisco Ballet

Episode 102
Pizza with Pizazz
Description: Joanne welcomes her student Geoff to class with a quick and easy salmon and pickled onion pizza. Then together they explore the idea of contrasts of flavor, texture, and color, making lemon turkey cutlets and an arugula and orange salad.
Recipes: Lavash Pizza with Herb Salad, Arugula and Orange Salad, and Lemon Turkey Cutlets
Student: Geoff Rubendall, Civil Engineer

Episode 103
Simply Elegant
Description: Joanne greets her student Sarina with a bruschetta salad and it is quickly apparent Sarina is the perfect student for dishes that are simple enough for a weeknight, yet elegant enough for Saturday night. They recreate the vinaigrette from the salad, discover how easy it is to cook clams, and finish with a warm blueberry maple compote melting over vanilla ice cream.
Recipes: Bruschetta Salad with Prosciutto di San Daniele and Greens, Clams with Chorizo and Orange, and Vanilla Ice Cream with Blueberry Maple Syrup Compote
Student: Sarina Crivello, Apple Specialist

Episode 104
Flavor Fiesta
Description: It’s a party when Joanne and her student Cheryl get together. Joanne adds a sweet crisp twist to classic guacamole, shows how to improve a store bought stock to elevate tortilla soup, and then the party really begins with muddled cherry margaritas
Recipes: Sweet Pea Guacamole, Tortilla Soup with Pork Meatballs, Tortillas and Cheddar, and Fresh Cherry Margaritas
Student: Cheryl Kovelchik, Entertainment Marketing

Episode 105
Swimming Upstream
Description: Most people, including Joanne absolutely adore salmon. She begins by nestling salmon rillete in endive, and then, with her student Jerry, bakes salmon in the ultimate symbol of love, a paper heart.
Recipes: Smoked Salmon Rillete/Endive, Salmon and Spring Vegetables Baked in Paper, and Lemon Tarragon Rice
Student: Jerry Feldman, International Business Development

Episode 106
Italian Love Affair
Description: Inspired by dishes made in her classes in Italy, Joanne introduces her student Reggie to bagna cauda, rigatoni with chicken in a tomato cream sauce, and a vegetable ribbon salad.
Recipes: Bagna Cauda, Rigatoni with Chicken, Tomatoes and Cream, and Vegetable Ribbon Salad
Student: Reggie Wooden, Student

Episode 107
Never Too Young
Description: Joanne welcomes her youngest student Stella to class and they nestle in to create a menu of some of Joanne’s favorite chilly weather dishes; roasted game hens with prosciutto and mushrooms and quinoa pilaf with dried blueberries and apricots.
Recipes: Sweet and Hot Pepper Relish Crostini, Roasted Game Hens with Prosciutto di Parma and Mushrooms, and Quinoa Pilaf with Dried Blueberries and Apricots
Student: Stella Ginsberg, Student and Blogger

Episode 108
Guilty Pleasures
Description: Joanne confesses to her student Kyle that her favorite food is potato chips, but gives him a healthier oven “fried” version. They are so good, it’s hard to save a few to go with their bruschetta blue cheese burgers and blueberry, nectarine sangria.
Recipes: Oven Fried Potato Chips with Marjoram Salt, Bruschetta Burger with Caramelized Onions and Blue Cheese and Rosé Sangria with Blueberry and Nectarines
Student: Kyle Khasigian, Financial Associate

Episode 109
Dinner Dance or Swept Off My Feet
Description: Joanne starts her class with a challenge, presenting her French student Pascal three variations on the classic French sauce aioli. Then they are both swept off their feet by Joanne’s twist on the classic combination of chicken and salad.
Recipes: Aioli and Variations, “Oven-Fried” Chicken Legs, and Butter Lettuce and Avocado with Lime Vinaigrette
Student: Pascal Molat, Principal Dancer, San Francisco Ballet

Episode 110
Ticket to Provence
Description: Joanne and her student Sasha are transported to Provence using herbs, citrus, and garlic. Joanne begins with a bright fresh citrus salad and then working together they create a very classic country, yet refined, dish of braised cod with leeks and potato.
Recipes: Citrus Salad with Mint and Red Onions, Cod Braised with Leeks, Potatoes and Thyme, and Roasted Garlic Slab
Student: Sasha Bernstein, Restaurant Consultant

Episode 111
Eat Your Vegetables
Description: Joanne eases the anxiety that can sometimes set in when a vegetarian is coming to dinner. Working with her fitness specialist student Randy she prepares a satisfying bulgur and feta salad and fried potato and spiced red pepper frittata that would satisfy vegetarians and meat-eaters alike.
Recipes: Bulgur, Feta and Oven-Dried Tomato Salad & Fried Potato and Spiced Red Pepper Frittata
Student: Randy Bramblett, Fitness Specialist

Episode 112
Magical Morocco
Description: Joanne shows us just how easily and quickly a deliciously spiced lentil soup can be made when you have the right spices in the pantry. She continues to spice it up with her student John, building a warm Moroccan chicken and sweet potato salad, cooling it off with a cardamom and ginger cocktail she has aptly named the Marrakech 75.
Recipes: Spiced Lentil Soup, Warm Moroccan Chicken and Sweet Potato Salad, and a Marrakech 75 Cocktail
Student: John Cu, Trial Attorney

Episode 113
Asia Express
Description: Joanne embraces teaching traditional recipes and then showing new ways to use them. She and her student Reggie make mayonnaise and create an Asian inspired meal of tuna burgers with wasabi mayonnaise and Thai cabbage and grapefruit slaw, leaving Reggie wondering if he will ever buy mayonnaise again.
Recipes: Grilled Yellowtail Tuna Burgers with Wasabi Mayonnaise and Thai Cabbage and Grapefruit Slaw
Student: Reggie Wooden, Student

Episode 114
Italian Marketplace
Description: Inspired by the roasted chickens in the markets of Italy Joanne teaches her student Joan her version of crispy chicken and potatoes with a side of hot pepper and white balsamic broccolini, topped off with a cherry Zinfandel zabaglione.
Recipes: Broccolini with Hot Pepper and White Balsamic, Crispy Chicken and Potatoes with Mustard, Rosemary and Capers, and Fresh Cherries with Late Harvest Zinfandel Zabaglione
Student: Joan Boada, Principal Dancer, San Francisco Ballet

Episode 115
Description: Joanne introduces her student Ron to the versatility of the often overlooked gingerroot greeting him with poached shrimp with a mango dipping sauce made with freshly grated ginger. Together it is then mussels steamed with mustard greens, lemon grass, and ginger with grilled bread with ginger aioli.
Recipes: Shrimp with Mango Dipping Sauce, Mussels Steamed With Mustard Greens, Lemon Grass and Ginger, and Grilled Bread with Ginger Aioli
Student: Ron Martin, Fire Chief

Episode 116
You Say Tomato
Description: When it is tomato season it is sometimes difficult to keep up with the bounty. Joanne prepares a chilled tomato and Greek yogurt soup, and then teaches her student Jack the versatility of roasted cherry tomatoes, showcasing them in a lamb sirloin salad.
Recipes: Chilled Tomato and Greek Yogurt Soup, Roasted Cherry Tomatoes, and Lamb Sirloin Salad with Feta and Roasted Cherry Tomatoes
Student: Jack Cohen, Website Merchandising

Episode 117
Go Nuts!
Description: Joanne goes “nuts” and makes for us her five-spice, ginger, and cayenne packed Asian Toasted Nuts. Then she encourages her student Geoff to do the same making stir-fried chicken, pine-nut lettuce wraps and cardamom-scented rice with toasted almonds.
Recipes: Asian Toasted Nuts, Stir-Fried Chicken and Mushroom Lettuce Wraps, and Cardamom-Scented Rice with Toasted Almonds
Student: Geoff Rubendall, Civil Engineer

Episode 118
Fast Forward to Dinner
Description: With her student Bonnie, Joanne makes us quicker versions of the comfort foods she grew up with in New England, oven-roasted sausages, and a sauerkraut that is so fast she couldn’t resist calling it lazy-girl sauerkraut.
Recipes: Oven-Roasted Sausages with Riesling, Apples and Pears and Lazy-Girl Sauerkraut
Student: Bonnie Lin, Conference Interpreter

Episode 119
Passport to Sardinia
Description: The island of Sardinia is one of Joanne’s favorite places. She created a menu to take her student Di there, fregola with clams and tomatoes and a yellow and green bean salad with cherry tomatoes and basil.
Recipes: Roasted Olives with Orange, Bay and Fennel, Fregola, Clams and Tomatoes, and Yellow and Green Bean Salad with Cherry Tomatoes and Basil
Student: Di Harris, Retired Nanny

Episode 120
Journey to Italy
Description: Joanne shares her memories of Italy with her student Barbra recreating some of the dishes form her travels. Starting with a simple salad of fig and prosciutto, then slowly adding just enough red wine to farro for a farro risotto, and finally ending the meal with a dessert of strawberry, port, and black pepper.
Recipes: Fig And Blueberry Salad With Crème Fraiche, Mint and Prosciutto di Parma, Farro Risotto with Red Wine and Grana Padano, Strawberry with Port and Black Pepper, and an Aperol Champagne Cocktail
Student: Barbra Bright, Kitchen Designer

Episode 121
Rustic Yet Refined
Description: Joanne makes us a classic Italian frico and then with her student Stephanie demonstrates how rustic and refined can work well together in the same meal, making a spiced lentil and herb salad and halibut wrapped in prosciutto.
Recipes: Frico with Bacon and Potatoes, Prosciutto di San Daniele-Wrapped Halibut Fillet, and Spiced Lentils and Herb Salad
Student: Stephanie Gerbracht, Wine Sales

Episode 122
I’m Inspired
Description: Joanne is often asked where her inspirations come from and begins by composing an inspired salad with roasted beets, and then gives her student Charlie some pointers for making honey glazed pork chops and a roasted squash puree.
Recipes: Bibb Lettuce Salad with Roasted Beet, Grapefruit and Pecans, Honey Glazed Pork Chops with Orange and Cardamom, and a Roasted Squash and Ginger Puree
Student: Charlie Baldwin, City Gardener

Episode 123
Kicking up the Classics OR Kick it up a notch
Description: Joanne and her student Lauren give comfort food a kick preparing a 30 minute lamb and black bean chili and hiding a red pepper jelly surprise inside corn muffins.
Recipes: Thirty-Minute Lamb and Black Bean Chili and Spicy Red Pepper Jelly-Filled Corn Muffins
Student: Lauren Eastman, Public Relations Executive

Episode 124
Market to Table
Description: Joanne’s day begins at the farmer’s market and she shows us a fresh sugar snap pea soup. Then she works with her student Kyle to perfect his pasta techniques making a fresh fettuccine with asparagus, prosciutto, and lemon crème fraiche.
Recipes: Sugar Snap Pea Soup with Mint and Meyer Lemon Oil and Fresh Fettuccine with Asparagus Ribbons and Lemon Crème Fraiche
Student: Kyle Khasigian, Financial Associate

Episode 125
Food Memories
Description: Joanne remembers her trips to Italy and with her student Di shows us a classic pizza strata and a dessert inspired by limoncello.
Recipes: Green Salad with Garlic croutons and Balsamic Red Wine Dressing, Pizza Strata, and Lemon Sorbet and Vanilla Ice Cream with Limoncello
Student: Di Harris, Retired Nanny


Episode 126
Summer's Bounty
Description: Summer is definitely the time Joanne gets excited about fruits and vegetables, greeting her student Leah with a little gem salad perfectly dressed with a buttermilk blue cheese dressing. They make a spicy spaghetti together and then cool things down with a blueberry frozen yogurt.
Recipes: Little Gems with Almonds and Buttermilk Blue Dressing, Spicy Spaghetti with Sautéed Fennel and Mussels, and Blueberry Frozen Yogurt
Student: Leah Ballantyne, Teacher