Anne Burrell has quite a bit going on these days.
The Food Network star, who’s engaged to girlfriend Koren Grieveson, is juggling a new season of Chef Wanted and an upcoming cookbook.
On the show, which airs at 10 p.m. Thursdays, four chefs battle through a series of challenges — food and business oriented — with one winner landing a job as the executive chef of a restaurant.
Burrell said the show is like a job interview — kind of. “This is just that, [but] amped up quite a bit,” she said.
The chefs have timed food challenges, but their personalities also have to come through. Burrell said that some of the problems she notices that contestants struggle with are maneuvering in the kitchen and getting along with other chefs.
“It is a much more intense process; there is a lot involved,” Burrell said. “We taylor make every test to the restaurant.”
An episode last season brought Burrell to Nikki Beach. South Florida’s Jouvens Jean, executive chef of Pierre’s Restaurant in Islamorada, was among the contestants. Jean was offered the executive chef position at the popular resort but opted to stay at Pierre’s.
When the camera was not rolling, Burrell frequented Midtown’s food scene, with visits to Sugarcane and Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink.
Of Miami, she said: “Great chefs, great food, a lot of culture. I go to Miami every year. I always try to see what’s new.”
Coming Oct. 15 is Burrell’s latest cookbook, the 100-recipe Own Your Kitchen: Recipes to Inspire & Empower. The cookbook focuses on relaxing recipes, she said, representing a shift in tone from her first book, Cook Like A Rock Star.
Burrell is still wrapping up filming on Chef Wanted but is already looking forward to 2014’s South Beach Wine and Food Festival. Last year, she oversaw a Diamond Dishes Dinner at Marlins Park, which included food cooked up by a host of well-known female chefs, including Miami’s own Michelle Bernstein.
Burrell also said she’d consider another chef adventure on the high seas. She was the host chef aboard a Food Network at Sea theme cruise; the itinerary included two weeks of European ports, including Spain and Italy, in 2011.
“I had a blast on that cruise, [but] it got a little bit long,” she admitted.