CNET editor and video host Sharon Vaknin writes and films useful tutorials on topics such as maximizing mobile devices and navigating social media platforms at work, but at home she's dreaming up creations like honey roasted peanut crusted chicken skewers and cheesecake-stuffed strawberries for her year-old YouTube cooking show Flavorcraft. And now, she's turned an evening side project into a new high-profile gig hosting the "Farm to Fork" segment on the forthcoming season of the PBS television series America's Heartland.
In each of the 11 episodes, Vaknin meets with a California farmer about a specific produce type and then cooks a dish highlighting the ingredient. So far, she's shot with farms such as Rio Verde's California Vegetable Specialties and Diamond Springs' Papa Hank's Skyridge Organic Blueberry Farm.
"Earlier this year, one of the America's Heartland producers -- who's also a CNET viewer -- found my channel and quickly contacted me when there was an opening for a host on 'Farm to Fork,'" says Vaknin of her break in food television. "Anyone who watches the show will walk away with new bits of info about their favorite veggies, plus a few easy and unexpected recipes they'll want to cook up right away."
"But these ain't your mama's fruit and vegetable dishes," she warns on her blog announcement.
"I'm planning to combine more of my tech know-how with the show once it airs," she promises. "Viewers will be able to ask me questions and get extras through channels like Facebook and Twitter."
America's Heartland premieres on September 3 on KQED.