When you get invited to meet one of your all-time favorite recording stars, in town for a food event, one cannot say no. The legendary Patti LaBelle was in town this week, partnering with Hood to showcase their new Calorie Countdown product for a cooking class. A very small group of bloggers and influencers were invited to cook and meet with Ms. LaBelle and I was lucky enough to be one of them.
Ms. LaBelle is well-known as a great home cook. When she travels on tour she does so with her pots and pans and rarely dines out due to her very public admission of having Type 2 diabetes. She absolutely loves food, sugary, sweet, fatty, and fried and the diagnosis was a major disruption. Yet, she has learned to cook to accommodate her needs, has published several cookbooks and even hosts a TV cooking show "PATTI LABELLE'S PLACE".
So, she's out there promoting more healthy alternatives. Exhibit one was this Chocolate Intensity Smoothie. Less fat and much less sugar, it's not as rich as real but still tasted okay. She also prepared a Macaroni And Cheese dish made with low fat cheeses.
Having a few moments with her to talk person-to-person was my best part of the event. I have a strong family history of diabetes and religiously get tested. We instantly bonded over this. I told her about my Grandfather, a victim of this disease later in his life. He had all of his toes amputated to stop an infection caused by poor circulation, a common symptom, much like her own mother. And I whispered to her the good news: he lived to be ninety-seven years old and extremely strong to the very end.
This went beyond the typical media tour, for me anyway. As a journalist I often approach these things skeptically but, sometimes, beyond the hair and make-up and handlers you break in and discover something human. Thank you Patti LaBelle for being such a class act!
I attended this event as a member of the media without remuneration or any editorial consideration.