Let us introduce a special Ponytail pal, Rosandra Lee, a Sydney sider who has pulled her sleeves up to explore the culinary realm of delicious goodness. Her blog ‘The Early Riser’ is testament to why we should look beyond bandaid solutions in life to keep us in top nick, while readers can follow her journey of discovery to living the best life possible. She wizards up some of our favourite dishes like Beef Masala (pictured above) and of course, she uses ghee like a boss. Today, she’s prepared a list of tasty podcasts that will have the utmost beginner to the master-chef-super-nerd listening in. Take it from here Rosie.

My addiction to food podcasts began as a way to make mundane kitchen tasks more tolerable – julienning vegetables, washing the dishes and waiting for water to boil. Before I knew it, I had a full blown obsession on my hands.

I now listen to podcasts in the shower, getting dressed, on the train, during my lunch break, shopping and when I’m brushing my teeth. I’ve even learnt to brush quietly so I don’t drown out the podcast… I’m now looking forward to some of these tasks. It gives me an excuse to escape into the minds of genius level foodies like Ina Garten, Yotam Ottolenghi and Andy Ricker. Laugh-out-loud at lame, foodie jokes with Molly and Matthew from the Spilled Milk podcast, or pretend that I work at Food52 headquarters.

My favourite podcasts often feel quite intimate. A few episodes in and you begin to feel like you’re spending quality time with close friends. In some cases, these “close friends” interview your culinary heroes and, well… it’s easy to see why podcasts are so popular. When the topic of conversation is food it’s often rooted in tradition, family, memories, romance, all the good stuff.

“People who love to eat are always the best people.” – Julia Child

Here’s a list of my top 5 favourite “food themed” podcasts. Don’t listen on an empty stomach!


Spilled Milk, the laugh-out-loud funny podcast.

During each episode, hosts, Molly Wizenberg and Matthew Amster-Burton, “cook something delicious, eat it all, and you can’t have any.” They pick one dish or food topic for discussion each week – from bacon, hot sauce to airplane food. Sometimes listeners send them food to try; foreign snacks, junk food, which they taste-test on air. It sounds like torture, especially on an empty stomach – and sometimes it is – but the various food topics discussed on the show act more as a vehicle for laughter than anything else. The banter back and forth between the hosts is consistently hilarious. So funny that I’m involuntarily laughing out loud in quiet, public places. All the time…

Molly and Matthew are veteran food bloggers so they know a thing or two about food. In between all the laughter, there’s a lot of thoughtful discussion, useful tips and even recipes. Sometimes it’s the little things, like dipping raw baby bok choy in chilli garlic sauce – so simple so delicious.

All the episodes are about 15-20 minutes long so they can be digested in short, bite sized pieces.

Start with…. carrots.

ponytail journal foodcasts1

Radio Cherry Bombe, the girl power podcast.

Want to hear rad women talking about food – those who make it, grow it, serve it, sell it, style it, enjoy it and everything in between? Well you’ve come to the right place.

This podcast is meant to compliment the Cherrybombe magazine which is one of my favourite food mags. They interview what seems like an endless roster of influential, intelligent and successful women like Ina Garten, Dana Cowin and Mimi Sheraton. The interviews are thoughtful, in depth and very inspiring. The host for season one and two, Julia Turshen, is super cute and does this nervous laugh to fill silences. I do exactly the same thing during awkward silences so we’re instant besties.

Word of warning – if you start listening to Radio Cherry Bombe, their punchy power pop theme song will be eternally stuck in your head – you’ll know what I’m talking about when you listen to it. By then it will be too late.

Start with… Ina Garten.


Dinner Party Download, the mixed bag podcast.

Who holds dinner parties these days? I certainly don’t go to many and when I do, I always feel like the awkward one! You can imagine my joy when I found Dinner Party Download, which aims to prepare you for dinner party situations.

Every episode starts off with an icebreaker – normally a cheesy joke, a rundown of news headlines from the past week, a bit of history trivia with an accompanying cocktail and an interview with a “ guest of honour.” Guests of honour have included Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Scarlett Johansson and Pharrell Williams – to name a few. The episodes also cover a range of topics like emerging food trends, dinner party etiquette even playlist recommendations. It’s well produced, fast paced and always entertaining.

Start with…Amy Schumer.. because…Amy Schumer.


Burnt Toast, l**istening in on a foodies meal (like you work at food52) podcast.**

Most of you have probably followed Food52 for a while now or at least stumbled upon their wildly popular website. This podcast is everything you would expect from them – beautifully edited, witty and interesting.

Each week, the founders Amanda Hesser and Merrill Stubbs’s are joined by a guest (or two) and engage in a debate about various food topics like “first date food,” lunch and weirrrrd food. All things you might expect Food52 to talk about in the office, around the water cooler, but don’t always make it onto the website. You get to sit in on the conversations and feel like you’re part of the team.

Listen to the podcast, close your eyes and imagine that you’re working somewhere as amazing as their new head quarters –

Start with…first date foods.


America’s Test Kitchen Radio,** the podcast for food nerds.**

The team at America’s Test Kitchen design experiments to test products, recipes and answer questions. The kind of questions that have often occurred to you but you’ve never thought to ask – like does slamming the oven door cause cakes to collapse and what’s the weird white stuff on cooked salmon?

The show has more of a serious, no frills tone, than the other podcasts mentioned above, debating a wide range of topics from gluten to Icleandic food to fungi. They interview well known chefs like Yotam Ottolenghi, Mario Batali and Rachel Ray and have “live call-ins” where they answer listeners’ questions.

This podcast is a bit of brain food. Listen to this. Because knowledge.

Start with…Cooking with Yotam Ottolenghi

So whether you’re aiming for the biennial world chef championship Bocuse d’Or, or just looking to boil some eggs, Rosie’s got your be-hinds covered.