If you've ever searched for a recipe here on MNN, you're likely to have come across several by Jerry James Stone, the cookbook author, recipe developer and blogger behind Cooking Stoned. Jerry always has a few projects going at once, like starting the Three Loaves project or writing "A Vegan Survival Guide for the Holidays" with Ed Begley Jr. (and giving it away for free).
His latest project is an online cooking show on Facebook, one that could be the first of its kind. Earlier this year, Facebook created Mentions, a feature that allows "actors, athletes, journalists, and other public figures to stay in touch with their followers." One of those ways is through live streaming videos. Jerry's Facebook feed became verified through Mentions, and he decided to launch something he didn't see being done anywhere else on Facebook — a free, live, interactive cooking class.
"The interaction is the really cool part of this class," says Jerry.
"It's more of a conversation. It's nice for people to be able to ask
about what I'm doing." While the live stream is happening, anyone
watching can make a comment or post a question in the comments
section (just as you can on any Facebook post), and the comments pop up on the
phone for Jerry to see. He's able to address some of the questions in real time, and
commenters are also able to interact and give their input.
With the ability to live stream to anyone who follows him on Facebook, Jerry started with a test class that he didn't advertise and worked out the kinks of going live via smartphone while showing his followers how to make a Thai Tea White Chocolate Martini. This past weekend, he held the first cooking class that he had actively promoted — and 1,300 people showed up to watch him make Kale & Roasted Butternut Squash Soup. Anyone who missed the class didn't miss out completely; a video of it is available on Facebook.
"You don't need anything extra than your regular Facebook account to watch the classes," says Jerry, "And they're available after. They don't disappear." Any one of Jerry's nearly 12,000 Facebook followers can view the videos from each class whenever they want.
He plans to hold a class about once every two weeks and he'll advertise upcoming classes on his Facebook page. Here are the upcoming classes announced so far:
- Halloween Recipes for Adults: Tuesday, Oct. 27, 6:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. PDT. (He's thinking about doing things with booze for this one.)
- Vegetarian & Vegan Thanksgiving Recipes: Thursday, Nov. 19, 6:30 p.m. to 7 p.m.PDT. He'll be making recipes from his "Vegan Survival Guide for the Holidays."
While you're waiting for Jerry's next class to start, check out a few of his seasonal recipes from the MNN archives: