Deb Ace the Lunch Lady

Deb Ace was born and raised in Liverpool England. She relocated to the US when she was 17 and worked for a plastic surgeon as a patient care coordinator. These days she lives in Maryville Tennessee and works as a lunch lady at a local high school. Ironically enough her mother managed a school cafeteria in England. Makes you wonder if the trip overseas was worth it, she assures me it was.

Mia Johnson USAF

Join Chef Ryan as he interviews Airman Mia Johnson of the United States Air Force about her experiences living overseas and serving as a dental assistant! 

Austin Sudkamp the Food Scientist

Did you know that almost every food product that you buy at the grocery store was designed or worked on by a food scientist? Join Chef Ryan as he interviews Food Scientist turned Seminarian Austin Sudkamp. Austin helps to explain the extremely important role that food scientists play in the day to day production of food. After which we discuss his transition from the world of science to the world of faith as Austin is also a seminarian at the highly acclaimed Kenrick Glennon Seminary here in St. Louis Missouri!

Phil Eagle aka The Honest Restaurant Manager

Phil Eagle has been in the industry for 12 years and is an expert in Millennial Customer Service. As The Honest Restaurant Manager, Phil has been able to reach a wide audience of young people in the industry and relate to them on a personal Level. He truly is Instagram’s Favorite Manager

Chris Gall the Line Cook

Chef Ryan interviews Chris Gall a relative newcomer to the restaurant industry. Chef Ryan learns what motivated him to join the restaurant industry, what culinary school was like and the different shenanigans that line cooks get into while working. Warning: Chris talks like a kitchen guy and uses a few select curse words to drive his points home.

Chef Peter Martinez

<br>Join Chef Ryan this week as he interviews Chef Peter Martinez, a NYC Chef, father, and former Chopped competitor. Laugh and learn as we dive into Peter’s past, present day, and future plans in the restaurant industry.

Jeff Buck the General Manager

“A grease trap MUST be serviced… this CANNOT be stressed enough.” Find out why a grease trap must be serviced this week on The People Behind Your Food, as Chef Ryan interviews General Manager, Jeff Buck.

Bryn from @Storybook_Tales

Bryn is not only an accomplished restaurant industry veteran, but also a quite famous cosplayer in her free time! Should you tip a server and how much? Can you be too tall to be a Disney Princess? Tune in to hear her amazing and very interesting stories!

Randall Jordan the Delivery Driver

<br> Chef Ryan Callahan interviews the indomitable Randall Jordan, who works as a delivery driver. Randall shares his experiences, hilarious stories, and delivery faux paux that people often make. Is it okay to pay for your food in change? What is a good tip? Are delivery drivers happy people? Find out on this hilarious episode of <em>The People Behind Your Food.</em>

Jessie Callahan the Producer

<br>Chef Ryan Callahan interviews the woman behind the scenes, his producer, editor, co-writer, and office manager, Jessie Callahan. In this interview Chef Ryan explores what it’s like to work behind the scenes helping to produce professional level food content but not actually being a chef yourself.

Savory Vegetable Starters

These are four easy and flavorful vegetable starters that will help you to define the character of your food. In traditional French cuisine, a savory vegetable base is known as a “mirepoix.” Because these vegetable bases define much of the characteristic and flavor of the dish, I wanted to give you a few options so you could begin to understand how to construct dishes. All that is missing from these starters is protein, seasoning, and a sauce to make a complete meal.

Option A is traditional French mirepoix. It is commonly used in soups and hearty stews. Option B is a modified French mirepoix. It is extra savory because of the addition of portabella mushrooms. Option C is the holy trinity. This is again a modified French mirepoix that forms the basis of creole and Cajun food, both of which are direct descendants of French cuisine. Option D is a classic southwest style vegetable blend. It will add great southwest style flavors to anything you cook.

Option A: Traditional Mirepoix
4 carrots, chopped
4 celery stalks, chopped
1 yellow onion, chopped
2 tbsp. canola oil

Option B: Savory Mirepoix
4 carrots, chopped
1 yellow onion, chopped
4 celery stalks, chopped
8 oz. portabella mushrooms, thinly sliced
2 tbsp. canola oil

Option C: The Holy Trinity
2 green peppers, thinly chopped
4 celery stalks, thinly sliced
1 yellow onion, chopped
2 tbsp. canola oil

Option D: Southwest Mirepoix
2 green peppers, chopped
8 oz. portabella mushrooms, thinly sliced
1 red onion, chopped
2 tbsp. canola oil

Flavor Balancers (for all options)
1 tsp. kosher salt, coarse
1 tsp. black pepper, ground

Recipe Directions
These directions apply to all options. Heat a large sauté pan over a medium heat. Add the oil and allow to warm for 30 seconds. Add all ingredients and allow to cook. Stir vigorously and often to prevent burning or sticking. Cook until onions are translucent. Use mirepoix in whatever recipe you are creating.

Chef Tips
You may wish to add a few tablespoons of cooking wine or water to help the onions cook properly. Onions benefit from a bit of moisture during the cooking process. The goal is to lightly brown, but fully cook these vegetable starters. Remember to slice all of your vegetables to an even size, because uneven sizes will create uneven cooking. This of course leads to burning.

Clint McDonald US Coast Guard

Chef Ryan Callahan interviews Clint McDonald who serves as a cook in the US Coast Guard about the unique challenges he faces every day cooking on a Coast Guard vessel.

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The New Direction


This is my first official blog post for my new personal website! I’d like to thank you for taking the time to read this. will be (is already?) where I post my thoughts on all things culinary. This includes recipes I try, cooking techniques, reviews of cookbooks (and anyone who knows me knows that I love cookbooks), equipment reviews, photos of tasty new food I’ve discovered, and anything else I feel like writing about.

For those of you who don’t know me, my name is Chef Ryan Callahan (yes just like the website!) and I am an American chef. I won a 2016 Gourmand award for my first book Cooking for Chemo …and After! Since then I have published Cooking for Kids With Cancer, Chef Ryan Callahan’s Tasting Journal and Chef Ryan’s How-to-Cook Cookbook. As a shameless plug, my books are available on Amazon, and any major local book retailer.

I am really excited about the new opportunities to further my “personal brand” as they call it in the biz. Which is to say I am excited to share all of my expertise in the culinary world with you! If you ever have any questions, just write me directly:

So again, thank you for taking the time to read this post, and check back soon for great new stuff!

Oh and don’t forget to sign-up for my cooking club email newsletter to keep upto date on all the stuff that I am doing!