Food Network star Daisy Martinez on ABC7 Chicago


March 23, 2010 9:42:12 AM PDT
Daisy Martinez, Food Network's hottest new star combines timeless Latin American dishes with vibrant recipes from her travels around the Spanish-speaking world in Daisy: Morning, Noon, and Night! Bringing Your Family Together with Everyday Latin Dishes.

(RELEASE)With her trademark warmth and candor, Chef Daisy demystifies Latin cooking in her latest cookbook and offers many tips that will help "Daisy-fy" everyday dishes and turn each meal into a memory.

Recipes on ABC7 News at 11

  • Empanadas with Blue Cheese and Caramelized Onion Filling
  • Empanadas with Bacon-Shrimp Filling
  • Empanadas with Creamy Corn Filling
  • For a woman passionate about food and her family, Chef Daisy says she's living a dream come true:

  • A "Foodie" from a very young age, Daisy Martinez grew up cooking alongside her mother and grandmothers.
  • On her 40th birthday, her husband surprised her with a gift of attending the French Culinary Institute. Her idol, Jacques Pepin, welcomed her personally.
  • After a stint as a private chef, she hosted Daisy Cooks! on PBS.
  • In early 2009, she teamed up with Rachel Ray and her production company to ramp up the Latin flavors of the Food Network. A launch pad to explore the food of Latin America, the second season of Viva Daisy! premiered in July 2009.
  • In the introduction to her fresh and inviting new cookbook, Daisy: Morning, Noon, and Night! Daisy writes, "To say that I am a bit obsessed when it comes to Latin food would be the understatement of the year. I've been known to chase people down the street in pursuit of the perfect tamale or to engage the cashier at my corner supermarket in a conversation about healthier refried beans."

    A native of Brooklyn, NY with roots in Puerto Rico, Daisy found the perfect opportunity to feed the fire of her obsession when her youngest child turned eight and Santa Claus stopped visiting the Martinez house. She and her husband decided that instead of giving their four children gifts, they would give them memories. Starting the following year, the family began traveling to a different country in Latin America during the week between Christmas and New Year's Day, experiencing the country through its food, historic sites, and culture.

    During those trips, Daisy kept careful notes on the food she and her family enjoyed, including what dishes were whose favorites. Recapturing the flavors and dishes they shared when traveling as a family-and keeping those memories alive-was Daisy's inspiration for writing her new cookbook. She found that whenever she recreated dishes from the their trips, her family not only enjoyed the food, but also reminisced about the memories, stories, and laughter from those trips. And now, with her highly personal and engaging new book, Daisy hopes to pass along the cultural bounties of Latin America and the importance of spending quality time together as a family to her countless fans.

    Conveniently divided into Morning, Noon, and Night sections, the cookbook is full of brilliant colors and bold flavors that mirror Daisy's exuberant and innovative cooking style. Daisy shares memories of her family's trips, the people they met, and the food they ate through a series of recipes and travelogues; her enthusiasm and infectious passion for food leaping from every page. She literally brings readers into the heart of her kitchen as she prepares meals that are enjoyed all over Latin America, including:


  • Breakfast Tamales, filled with raisins and olives as they are savored in Peru
  • Mayan Omelets infused with chaya-a plant reminiscent of spinach but with a kick-from the Yucatán
  • Mallorcas (Sweet Breakfast Rolls) that are enjoyed all over Latin America and Spain

  • Berengena con Coco (Braised Eggplant with Coconut Milk) from the Dominican Republic
  • Cream of Zucchini Soup with Crabmeat, inspired by the Peruvian dish Zapallitos Rellenos
  • Tortillas filled with Roasted Poblanos, a delicious, roll-your-own taco dish from a restaurant in Oaxaca

  • Arepitas de Yuca (Yucca Fritters) with pineapple-vinegar-chili dipping sauce
  • Salt Cod and Eggplant Napoleans, a traditional pairing of food in the Caribbean
  • Chorros a la Chalaca (Mussels with Corn and Tomato) from an extraordinary restaurant in Lima
  • Guava-Cream Cheese Pastelillos (Turnovers), sure to satisfy the most serious sweet-tooth and the busy mom who made them in under 10 minutes

    Daisy Martinez is the host of the Food Network's Viva Daisy! and author of the cookbooks Daisy Cooks!, which was an IACP nominee and winner of Best Latino Cookbook in the World by the Gourmand World Cookbook Awards; and Daisy: Morning, Noon, and Night!. She is also a regular columnist for Every Day with Rachel Ray, and Siempre Mujer magazine.

    A Brooklyn, New York native born to mainland Puerto Rican parents, Daisy Maria Martinez lived at her grandmother's house until she was almost five years old. Between her grandmother, Valentina, and her mother, Conchita, Daisy learned that the kitchen is the happiest room in the household, filled with love, family, and delicious food. With an extended family of relatives from Central America, Spain, and other parts of the Spanish-speaking world, Daisy grew up appreciating the diversity of Latin cuisine.

    While attending Long Island University, she met her husband, Dr. Jerry Lombardo. After marrying, Daisy dedicated herself to raising her family, for whom she often hosted festive and gatherings featuring delicious food - a tradition that she happily continues to this day.

    As a surprise birthday gift, Daisy's husband sent her to cooking school - a dream that Daisy had always wanted to pursue. In 1998 she matriculated at the French Culinary Institute, where she won first prize for her final project, The Passionate Palate. Shortly after graduation, Daisy worked as a prep-kitchen chef on the set of PBS' Lidia's Italian-American Kitchen, as a private chef in New York City, and as the owner of a small catering business, also called The Passionate Palate.

    In 2005 Daisy launched her new career with Daisy Cooks! on PBS, and her cookbook, Daisy Cooks! Latin Flavors that Will Rock Your World, which was an IACP nominee, and American Category Finalist, as well as winner of the Best Latino Cuisine Cookbook in the World by the Gourmand World Cookbook Awards.

    As Daisy's star ascended she met the iconic Rachael Ray at an event. This chance meeting lead to Ray's production company, Watch Entertainment, producing Viva Daisy! which debuted on the Food Network in January 2009. Daisy's newest show continues her focus on celebrating life and family through food, while demonstrating her knowledge of the broad spectrum of Latin cuisine. In addition to her new TV show, Daisy is also a regular columnist for Every Day with Rachael Ray and Selecciones magazines.

    Intensely proud of her Puerto Rican heritage, Daisy is very active in the Latino community and with many philanthropic endeavors. To date, just a few of her honors and activities include: Latinas Unidas in Rochester, NY, and The Committee for Hispanic Children and Families, mistress of ceremonies for The American Cancer Society Gala/Brooklyn Chapter, the New York Fire Department Museum Cook-Off, March of Dimes/ Chicago Chapter, Easter Seals Miami/Dade County Chapter, appearing at numerous career days at schools all over New York City, and most recently was named by the Brooklyn Kings County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce as the 2009 Latina Chef of the Year.

    With great excitement, Daisy begins 2010 by taking part in the Food Network's South Beach Wine and Food Festival (SOBE) in Miami. In addition, she is touring the United States and Puerto Rico to promote her new cookbook Daisy: Morning, Noon and Night, which has been released in English and Spanish. The book is Daisy's most recent addition to her successful and promising career as author and chef.

    A dedicated mother of four children, Daisy and her family live in Brooklyn, NY.

    To learn more about Daisy, visit her website at:

    Book signing from 5 to 7 pm
    Tuesday, March 23
    702 W. Fulton Market

    Menu Specials, Book Signing

    WHAT: Carnivale and Executive Chef Mark Mendez welcome Daisy Martinez, star of the Food Network's Viva Daisy! for a book signing celebration on Tuesday, March 23, 2010 from 5:00 PM - 7:00 PM.

    Martinez will sign her new cookbook, Daisy: Morning, Noon, And Night (Atria Books; $30.00; March 2, 2010), which will be available for sale in Carnivale's festive bar and lounge. Complete bio of Martinez is below.

    In honor of the special guest, Chef Mendez will offer appetizer specials from the cookbook including Blue cheese and Caramelized Onion Empanadas, Asopao (Puerto Rican chicken and Pigeon Pea Soup) and the special Daisytini. Complete menu specials are below.

    WHEN: Book signing: Tuesday, March 23, 5 PM - 7 PM

    Specials available: Tuesday, March 23 and Wednesday, March 24, during lunch and dinner

    702 West Fulton Market
    Chicago IL 60661


    Blue Cheese And Caramelized Onion Empanadas $7

    Asopao $7

    Puerto Rican Chicken and Pigeon Pea Soup

    Barbecued Beef Short Ribs $25


    Casa Noble Tequila, Agave Nectar, Passion Fruit, Lime, and Mint $9

    About Carnivale

    Featuring "Latino flavors with the spice of life," Carnivale is a reflection of Latin culture and community, with dishes created by executive chef Mark Mendez (formerly of Patria in New York and Gioco in Chicago). Mendez's soulful, authentic Latino cuisine allows guests to explore the savory dishes of Cuba, Puerto Rico, Brazil, Columbia, Peru, Argentina, El Salvador and Mexico, as often prepared in simple kitchens all over Latin America by abuelitas (grandmothers). Carnivale, named for the pre-Lenten party celebrated in various parts of the world, is authentic with its cuisine and grand in décor. The kaleidoscope of bright colors, salsa music, and playful decor ignite the sense of being in a Latin house party. Carnivale can lend its splendor to any event grand or intimate with a variety of seven spaces including the Salsa Room that accommodates up to 200 guests.