How Drew Barrymore fell in love with this Pinay chef’s kitchen

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“My relationship with Drew is really, really loving, and we communicate in very strange ways. All of our love letters are dog-eared recipes and photos of food on Instagram. ”

RHIA GRANA January 14, 2021

Hollywood actress Drew Barrymore couldn’t stop raving about Pilar Valdes’ Roast Tomato Roblano Soup in a recent episode of Drew’s Kitchen on the Drew Barrymore Show.

“It’s one of my favorite soups of yours. It was such a revelation the first time I had it, ”says the actress, who became a talk show host as she helped herself to spoon up the hearty invention. “I’ve never tried anything like this.”

Indeed, this is the second time the New York-based chef has appeared on Drew’s show. The first time was last October when she taught the Santa Clarita Diet star and mother of two how to make creamy quinoa risotto.

Pilar has been the American actress’ personal chef for about three years. Drew obviously loves Pilar’s cooking as it helped prevent her weight gain “without doing anything [the] Chicken Broccoli Thing “that she doesn’t think isn’t” good for happiness. “

Drew shares on the October episode that Pilar’s culinary skills have allowed her to enjoy “longing dishes” that are “really healthy, digestive and weight-reducing.” She says she couldn’t be happier with the results.

Pilar reveals that one of the reasons she became interested in cooking “really is because I miss my home, the sense of community, of the people around the table.” Screengrab from the Drew Barrymore Show

BFFs

Drew and Pilar’s relationship has evidently gone beyond mere cook and customer, as Drew now describes Pilar as “one of my dearest friends.”

“Pilar and I spend almost literally every day together, and we love food, we love laughs, and we love traveling the world,” says Drew on the latest episode of her show.

Drew sums up their similarities well and shares how the food brought them together. “You’re self-taught, I made it myself,” she says, speaking to Pilar, who is also the cook and co-owner of the catering company Kickshaw Cookery. “It proves that you don’t have to have a degree, no specific economic trip or cookie cutter trip. You can be anywhere in the world. You’re in Manila, I’ve been here and here we are together. “

The 45-year-old actress says her relationship with Pilar is unique as she “speaks in cookbooks, pictures and Instagram posts …”. In fact, according to Drew, the avowed cookbook junkies have put together their collection.

Pilar repeats this in a video that features the cooking segment in the latest episode (we posted it on her sister, jewelry designer Bea Valdes’ Instagram). “My relationship with Drew is really, really loving, and we communicate in very strange ways. All of our love letters are dog-eared recipes and photos of food on Instagram. “

They also share a “nostalgic love” for creamy mushroom soup that their mothers made for them. “What binds us is how we live our lives now and how we choose to honor our past and our families,” says Pilar.

Pilar with the sisters Marga and Bea on the cover of Philippine Tatler

Be culinary

Pilar, who finds his way around the culinary arts, may seem unlikely at first. Her LinkedIn profile indicates that she studied Cinematography and Film / Video Production at the University of the Philippines and the prestigious Sarah Lawrence College in New York, where she studied humanities, general studies, and humanities.

Pilar also appeared to have an affinity for legal work, having served as program assistant for the Funders Collaborative on Youth Organizing and assistant director of the Global Action Project. Both non-profit organizations focus on advancing youth development and social justice.

In her interview, Pilar reveals that one of the reasons she became interested in cooking “really is because I miss my home, the sense of community, of the people around a table”. And so she throws dinner parties with anyone willing to enjoy her meal.

In the summer of 2010, Pilar and her friend and business partner, Binh Ly, decided to start Kickshaw Cookery (“Kickshaw usually means a delicacy, according to the website”), a lunch delivery service that eventually turned into a catering company.