A Jewish chiropractor who can cook? Sounds like the perfect husband.
But Jason Goldstein’s taken. And his culinary skills have landed him a spot as a finalist on this season’s Food Network Star, the cook-off competition where emerging chefs strive to impress kitchen royalty like Bobby Flay and Giada DeLaurentiis.
“It’s been amazing,” said Goldstein, whose colorful “simple recipes for happy, busy people” have also landed him spots on Good Morning America and The Chew. ”I watched Bobby and Giada on TV when I was a kid. To cook for them was incredible, and they’re so cool and supportive. And standing next to Robin Roberts at GMA, you could just feel her gratitude.” Comfort food’s his specialty; for Roberts, he cooked a bacon-cheeseburger that starts with raw bacon and beef in a blender.
Even as his culinary endeavors mushroom into much more than a hobby, Goldstein still runs his Manhattan practice, Oasis Chiropractic. “I like doing them both,” he told the Forward. “When you love, you can do more than one thing. I’m just grateful people like my recipes and relate to me.”
Goldstein even thinks his non-pro status works in his favor on the Food Network show. “Chiropractor by day – that’s my edge,” he laughed. “I bring that non-cheffy-chef thing. You don’t have to go home after a long day and cook a roast. You can make cooking fun, and dance in the kitchen to the sizzle. Any recipe I make is something anyone can make.”
Goldstein, 40, grew up in a Reform household in Marlboro, New Jersey, where “food was the center of our lives. I grew up watching the Food Network, and I begged my mom to teach me how to cook. We’d come back from grocery shopping and cook together. She still makes the best potato pancakes and brisket in the world.”
His food obsession eventually bled into his work; “someone would mention a burger while I was working on them, and all I could think about was running home and trying a burger recipe.”
What Goldstein’s advice to aspiring cooks? “Get a slow cooker,” he said. “You put stuff in it, leave it in the fridge, and then right before you go to work, you can press ‘start’. Your food’s ready when you get home, and you’re not stressed out about cooking.”
Goldstein’s garmento husband, Tom, is his official taste tester at their home in Manhattan’s Chelsea neighborhood. “He rates everything from one to ten,” Goldstein said. “Luckily, most of the time he thinks my recipes are really good.”
For the rest of the year, Goldstein’s planning “lots of cooking and new recipes”, including a kimchi stir-fry and meatloaf. He’s got a publicist and an agent working on development deals, and – of course – a practice to run. “If you dream big and love what you do, anyone can do anything,” he said. ”I mean, look at me.”