Diana DeGarmo easily brings her charm, dynamic attitude and passion for performing to the stage. DeGarmo also showcases her creative passion in the kitchen arena.
"I love to cook," said DeGarmo, during a recent telephone interview. DeGarmo and her husband Ace Young are currently starring in the touring production of "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat," which runs through March 30 at Chicago's Cadillac Palace Theatre. FYI: Call Broadway in Chicago Ticket Line at (800) 775-2000 or visit BroadwayInChicago.com.
The actress/singer, who was the runner-up in 2004 on "American Idol," said she enjoys creating a variety of dishes in her kitchen.
"I grew up in the South. My grandmothers were big cooks. My mom cooked a lot for the holidays and my dad was also a big cook," she said.
DeGarmo said when she started doing musical theater in 2008, she was single and didn't want to cook just for herself so she'd bake and cook and share her recipes with fellow cast members and friends.
"I didn't want to be a glutton by myself," she said, laughing. Plus, her belief is "You can always win someone over with good food."
At the time, the apartment she was living in had great cookware, she said.
"So, I just went to town."
Among dishes DeGarmo makes is a Honey Spice Chicken, which she said is a favorite of many people, including husband Ace.
DeGarmo said she likes to surf the Internet and look for recipes because there's so much out there. "You Tube is great too. I learned how to de-seed a pomegranate on You Tube and I've shared that information."
Laughing, DeGarmo said her love of cooking "did help" a bit to win husband Ace's heart. (Ace Young was also a contestant on a past "American Idol.")
"When we first started dating, I was cooking a lot," she said. Ace, she said, is also a good cook.
"He's my sous chef," DeGarmo said, adding he'll willingly chop items, and do various prep work.
"But he also says 'you cook, I'll clean.'
Try your hand at one of DeGarmo's favorite recipes.
HONEY SPICE CHICKEN
Chicken Breasts, 1 per number of people you're feeding
Honey, 2 tablespoons per chicken breast
Creole Seasoning, 1 teaspoon per chicken breast (or more if you like extra spice like my hubby!)
Deep Baking Dish (so none of that yummy honey spice goodness goes running away!)
DIRECTIONS: Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Spray baking dish with cooking spray. Butterfly chicken breasts if they're extra big. Place chicken into dish. Pour honey over chicken then add Creole seasoning. Bake for 30 minutes. Then enjoy! Add a side dish or two and dinner is served.