Carla Hall is a revelation. I saved my favorite episode of the season for last because her personality is like the last piece of cake that you want to save and savor at the perfect time. In our winding chat, Carla talks about the serendipitous way she came to the culinary world, how she landed on TV, how she cultivated a strong sense of self, what she’s learned from failure, and much more.
Behind Her Brilliance: Not taking herself too seriously
Say hi to Carla Hall on Twitter: @carlahall
CARLA HALL | Carla Hall is best known as co-host on ABC’s Emmy Award-winning popular lifestyle series “The Chew.” She won over audiences when she competed on Bravo’s “Top Chef” and “Top Chef: All Stars” and shared her philosophy to always cook with love. Carla believes food connects us all, and she strives to communicate this through her work, her cooking, and in her daily interactions with others.
Born in Nashville, TN, Carla grew up surrounded by soul food. When the time came for her to select her career path, she first opted for a business route – she graduated from Howard University’s Business School and worked as an accountant for two years – before deciding to switch gears to work as a runway model. It was during that time, as she traveled (and ate) her way through Europe for a few years, that she truly realized her deep-rooted passion for food could be her career path. Today, she is a trained chef who has worked in several professional restaurant kitchens in and around the Washington, D.C. area and is an accomplished television personality and author.
On the literary front, Carla has combined her loves of food, people, and culture to write several cookbooks. Her latest cookbook, Carla Hall’s Soul Food: Everyday and Celebration, will be published on October 23rd. She has two previous cookbooks – Carla’s Comfort Food: Favorite Dishes from Around the World andCooking with Love: Comfort Food That Hugs You.
Carla is very active with a number of charities and not-for-profit organizations that reflect her passion for causes close to her heart. Such organizations include Helen Keller International, an organization that works to improve the lives of those with blindness, and to prevent the causes and consequences of blindness, poor health, and malnutrition. She is also the Culinary Ambassador for Sweet Home Cafe at the Smithsonian National Museum for African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C. where she works to bring attention to and connect the experience of moving through the museum with the stories and history that inspire the food in the cafe.
Carla lives in D.C. with her husband, Matthew Lyons.
Carl’s leap from CPA to international model
The rollercoaster ride of Carla’s career after leaving Europe
Carla’s path to culinary passion
How Carla launched her first business
How Carla landed on Top Chef at 42
Carla’s ‘General Hospital’ debut
Carla’s new book,
Carla’s daily affirmation
The secrets to Carla’s happy marriage
And much, much more!
STUFF MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE
The Courage to Be Disliked (Lisa Likes)
Carla’s forthcoming book, Carla Hall’s Soul Food
Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult (Carla’s Book Pick)