Name: Rachael Domenica Ray/
Birthdate: August 25, 1968
Place of birth: Glens Falls, N.Y
Where she grew up: Lake George, N.Y.
Background: Her Italian-American family originally came from Sicily, Italy
How her culinary career started:
At Macy's Marketplace in New York, first at the candy counter and then as the manager of the fresh foods department. After Macy's, Rachael helped to open Agata & Valentina, the prestigious New York gourmet marketplace, where she was the store manager and buyer.
Her current list of cookbooks:
• 30 Minute Meals (1999)
• Comfort Foods (2001)
• Veggie Meals (2001)
• 30-Minute Meals 2 (2003)
• Get Togethers: Rachael Ray 30 Minute Meals (2003)
• $40 a Day: Best Eats in Town (2004)
• Rachael Ray's 30-Minute Meals: Cooking 'Round the Clock (2004)
• Rachael Ray's 30-Minute Meals for Kids: Cooking Rocks! (2004)
• Rachael Ray's 30-Minute Get Real Meals: Eat Healthy Without Going to Extremes (2005)
• Rachael Ray 365: No Repeats: A Year of Deliciously Different Dinners (2005)
• Rachael Ray's Express Lane Meals: What to Keep on Hand, What to Buy Fresh for the Easiest Ever 30 Minute Meals (2006)
• Rachael Ray 2-4-6-8: Cooking for Couples or Crowds (2006)
The birth of the 30 Minute Meals concept:
While working at a food equipment store in Albany as a buyer and cook, Rachael began a series of cooking classes to increase grocery sales during the holidays. The 30 Minute Meals classes became so popular that the local media sent a feature reporter to cover the phenomenon, and the following week, an Albany TV station asked Rachael to do a weekly 30 Minute Meals segment for the evening news.
How she arrived at Food Network:
The same day a Today show producer saw her book and had her come on the show, a Food Network executive heard her on an upstate public radio show. 30 Minute Meals premiered on Food Network, November 17, 2001 at 11:30am. $40 A Day premiered April 24, 2002, followed by Inside Dish November 5, 2004 and Tasty Travels on August 26, 2005.
Her wedding day:
n September, 2005, Rachael flew about 100 friends to Tuscany to celebrate her marriage to John Cusimano.
On October 19, 2005, her food and lifestyle magazine, Every Day With Rachael Ray, hit store shelves, followed a week later by her 11th book, 365: No Repeats, which offers a different dish for every day of the year.
Her dog's name:
E.V.O.O. (extra-virgin olive oil), stoup (a cross between a stew and soup), yum-o, sammies (instead of sandwiches)