Wendy Stuart Kaplan: “Pandemic Chef of the Century”

Wendy Stuart Kaplan in her spare COVID 19 time has been learning to cook the hard way. Deciding to film a cooking show when you’ve never cooked in your life is not only courageous, but a huge undertaking as well…almost as massive as traveling to the depths of Africa to film a documentary. Wendy has done them both and more.

As a model she wrote a best-selling book and as a Nightlife personality she’s been in bed with Ike Avelli Live. She doesn’t process the word fear when it comes to creating a project! Deciding to ask Wendy some intimate questions was a no brainer…….

If you were President of the United States what would your first command be and please don’t let it entail anything to do with cooking LOL?

If I were President of the United States my first command would be more nightclubs! I would have mandatory club nights that must be attended. Each American would be required once a week their choice of day to go out dancing. Or if they were really not cool about dancing then they at least would have to talk to people they met when they were out. A realistic goal like 2 new people that you either got their phone number for texting or became a Facebook friend. In addition, my platform would include Universal plastic surgery and beauty treatments paid for by the Federal Gov. I’m serious about this. People get sick because they don’t like what aging does to them. In my addendum to regular health care I would include Botox, Juvaderm, Restylane, facial peels, and for people needing more all the plastic surgery procedures available 
Oh this applies to body treatments like Lipo, Tummy Tucks, Brazilian Butt Lifts and Boob jobs.

Speaking of Cooking What’s new in your private cooking industry? 

Pandemic Cooking was started mid-March as my personal response to this Pandemic, which was getting people sick and causing unacceptable death counts. It was my comedic response to a tragedy of epic proportions unlike anything we have ever seen before in our lifetime. So here I am 40 episodes later with people actually making and loving the recipes but moreover the responses are incredible to how this show makes people laugh and is pure comic relief for them. A regular cooking show has great hosts that cook. My show has an over the top comedian (me) who never cooked period and is now cooking. To me this is a win win situation to affect the cooking industry in a way it never has been presented before. To me the opportunities for sponsors, branding and endorsements are huge. In both the entertainment and cooking industries.

Rumor has it that you’ve been appearing on a Saturday night comedy/entertainment show called “Live In Bed With Ike Avelli” ….how good is he in bed?  

Now the fact that Rumor has It (wasn’t that an Annie Lenox Song) that I’ve been spending Sat nights “Live in Ike Avelli’s Bedroom” is not at all a rumor but the truth!!!! I cannot deny it! Ike is amazing in bed because he’s all about sharing which is what keeps it all interesting isn’t it? You never know who else is gonna show up! It could be a drag performer, a singer, a sidekick, and what could be better than his audience, our voyeurs who love to watch!!! Of course, Ike always engages with songs from TV as well as jokes! And then there’s always a video! I do love his interviews with the performers as I want to know intimate details of people I’m in bed with. And those juicy details like who was the worst drag performer you ever worked with? Personally, I love sharing tales about my ex gay husband number five of the gay husbands? The youngest, narcissistic and selfish. I particularly enjoy talking about him on Ike’s show. As good as an orgasm. Why I tell you “Live in Ike Avelli’s Bedroom is better than porn!”

OK Wendy, I’m going to put you on the spot…What’s your favorite recipe…?  

Ah my favorite recipe? That would have to be the Truffle Potato Chip Encrusted Chicken which recently was featured in Joe Zaso’s Quarantine Cuisine Cookbook! This recipe was created with Nurse Jed, frontline by day, Burlesque Performer by night. Loved having him as a guest on my show and making this dish. Not only is he a “dish” but using truffle oil mixed with mayo to coat your chicken then taking each piece and putting it in the truffle chip bag where you’ve crushed the chips up, OMG! Move over Shake and Bake this kills it! I also have to admit I loved crushing the chips up in the bag to make the coating. It was very empowering. I mean when do you ever get to do that?

What new projects do you have in mind when we are once again free? 

I’m free now! Very free since I am now operating with no boundaries what so ever! Everything in the entertainment industry changed with Covid 19. I believe there will be many more opportunities for performers since the old structures that existed had the underpinnings pulled out and the new platforms have not identified themselves. Call me crazy, but I’ve done an incredible amount of shows, interviews, and podcasts during this time period. I’ve been interviewed all over the country without ever leaving my couch! And I take my Zoom or Stream Yard performances as serious as I would being on a stage. Hair, makeup, costumes, lighting, and I’m good to go! I actually surprised myself how well I could connect with an audience on Zoom. It really is the same skill set I would use on stage but now it’s virtual.  Because this is what I have now! Use it or lose it! 

My passion project “Working Dogs: A Love Story” is in the process of being edited while we are isolating at home. My film will be finished by early fall, ready to explore the best channels to launch our screenings from. This film will raise awareness regarding the human animal bond and the pivotal relationship dogs play in our lives as service and therapy dogs. I interview people in the film who depend on these dogs for their day to day existence. A journalist with epilepsy whose dog can smell when he is about to have a seizure. Or a dog that can count steps to the supermarket to safely get his blind owner there. And those are just a few remarkable instances in the film. And there is not a day that goes by when I am not jotting down another project I’d like to do. I would love to continue to create vehicles with some of the amazing performers I’ve gotten to work with during this time. Something about this Pandemic really set me off and I exploded in a sea of creativity. And I am hoping that the huge party Extravaganza I hosted January 24 is able to happen again when it’s safe to pile 300 people in a room that holds 250. Of course my LGBTQ Triversity which I helped create and have been on the board of for 8 years is moving ahead with our own YouTube Channel and I will be interviewing key players there as well.

How did you get  involved with NYC Nightlife Creatures Nick Lion, Tym Moss, Ike Avelli and the rest?

Well are you ready for a Fairy Tale? Once upon a time not even a year ago I met a dashing charismatic prince by the name of Nick Lion at Club Cumming where we were celebrating the life of the incredibly talented comedian Robbyne Kamille.   We talked for literally 5 minutes and friended each other on Facebook and that was it. But as I go out a lot, I asked him a few times if he wanted to join me. I usually go out in a posse and all are welcome if they’re fun. Even more welcome if they’re fun and like to dance. Well, suddenly I get an invite from Nick to go see this opening of a film called “Junk” starring Tym Moss.  He also invited a large group of friends to support Tym. He picked me up at my house and drove me to the theatre. Then he gave me some beautiful bling, a bracelet. He also gave one to his stunning friend Maria. The Gay Gods were shining down on me with Nick Lion. He totally loved and respected women. And I knew he was the real deal. We of course had a blast that night. His friends were just like him. Fun and genuine. The real deal. Then he invited me shortly after to Mark DeAlwis’ Salons Mingle Jingle. Again, fabulous people. Marks partner Billy Hess is an incredible photographer. And everyone I met that night was so unbelievably nice. 

I started telling Nick about my Jan 24th event to celebrate my birthday. It was going to be a short evening of readings with a small party afterward, at Daniel Nardicio’s Club Bedlam. Except that’s not what happened. Nick jumped in to help produce it and the next thing I knew he and I would be going out at least two nights a week going to different clubs and venues and getting the most fabulous people to come to our event. And then we decided we would have performers. That’s how I got to know Tym Moss who sang in the show. I think Ike couldn’t come or maybe he did come, and I didn’t remember it as I was on fast forward at 125 BPM. We had Sherri Vine Host, and our lineup included Margoh Channing, Edwin Vasquez, Jed Ryan, Bear Donna, Tammy Faye, and more. Corey Craig was the DJ. What a night. We went down as legendary for bringing back the vibe of Studio 54 in 2020.  I had the time of my life,  Nick and I decided that we were going to start producing parties on this level. As I stood on that stage Jan 24th there was a rush that came over me, a tsunami actually, an epiphany that everything in my life would be changing. That proved to be true both metaphorically and in real time. Another irony was Ike Avelli is someone I’ve also gotten to know through doing “Live In Bed With Ike Avelli. Prior to now I only knew his name. Incredible what has happened since Jan 24th! The following 10 days later Nick, myself and Tym were all at the Glam Awards. And the following week or so later we were at Tym and Ike’s new project “Theality” as audience members. I got to talk to Ike a lot more that night. He’s hilarious and loves to dance. Me too! Look at how our paths kept crossing! So, take a look at this as a family tree with Nick Lion on top and branches below which are the rest of us. Nick Lion is an incredible catalyst. And a heart that’s huge.  He was determined to bring all of us together! You too Eileen Shapiro! And he did. And we’ve all been working together now since the Pandemic. That’s pretty incredible considering!

Any closing words regarding our planet?

Ah closing words for the planet. These are words that I live by. “Live life large, loud, and generously. Take care of your friends, and love them abundantly. Find forgiveness for those who love you and make mistakes because none of us are perfect. Create abundance all around you and share it with those who are worth it. This is how I live my life on this planet. Oh, and one more thing… for those who are consumed with ill will and jealousy towards your success, who tell you they can never be happy for you, there is no need to ever forgive them. They don’t matter in your life and your success will only underline their failure. Surround yourself with people who want the best for you, and you for them. Do that, and your life will be extraordinary!

Watch “Pandemic Cooking with Wendy” starring Wendy Stuart Kaplan on Youtube  here:

The official website for Wendy Stuart Kaplan may be found at https://www.wendystuarttv.com

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