Don’t Call It a Comeback

Don’t call it a comeback… I’ve been here for years! I have to quote the great rapper LL Cool J, because it is only fitting after my recent appearance on Food Network’s Comeback Kitchen/Food Network Star.

Back in 2009, when I was asked to be a competitor on Food Network Star season 5, I had no idea what I was signing up for. I was off to NYC, thrown into situations I had no control over, and asked to cook on a time clock with the world watching. Even though I had some impressive moments and took six other contestants out of the competition, I was eventually asked to go home with no show of my own. I was devastated; but, I remember saying in my last interview, “This is not the last time you will see me!”, and I meant that. Being sent home on a reality show was not going to be the end of my world.

Looking back on it, being on a reality show was actually good free therapy. It showed me what I needed to work on and taught me a lot about myself. You take away a lot when you have a panel of judges judging you along with the rest of the world. I think one of the most important things I took away from the experience is that no one is made into a superstar overnight. EVERYONE has to go thru a process as they continue to make progress. God does not do microwave leaders. He must oven bake us properly so that we can be served and enjoyed at the appointed time.

I stayed in the grind taking all kinds of jobs from small budget web shows to major network appearances. I knew I had to share the stage in order to hone in on my craft, but sometimes it was frustrating. Every time I wanted to give up, some type of divine intervention refocused me on my goals. May I give you a bit of advice? Don’t be so quick to dismiss little things that cross your path like a compliment from a stranger, or an encouraging song popping up on the radio (Kayne West’s Touch the Sky is my fav) or an unforeseen door opening. All of these things are God’s way of letting you know, He has your back. So keep pressing on!

Fast forward to 2017; when I was asked compete on Comeback Kitchen I was filled with so many uncertainties. Can I be away from my new baby for so long? Do I want to give up so much control again? Can I handle the devastation if I lose? Can I get over the social media trolls? All kinds of thoughts were rushing in and then it hit me.  All of the work I had been doing on myself and my craft over the years has led up to this very moment. I did not have to act secure and confident for the cameras like last time, I am those things right now. This time around was different. I am now a confident, polished, assertive, grown woman, and I am ready to show the world what I have been working on! But, I could not have gotten to that place without time.

Sooooo, if you watched the show, I know you are thinking, Jamika, you went all the way to the finale this time and still did not bring home the crown. I know ☹.  But just because your name is not called as the winner, does not mean you are not called at all. So many people rallied for me that I know my time and show will come. Instead of letting time make me want to quit, time is making me stronger, better, and more fierce.

This whole experience allowed me to perform in front of millions of fans again, create culinary genius under unimaginable constraints, and moreover, do what I do best-Slay & Sauté my competitors. YASSSS!

Remember, the greatness we are all working to create takes time, persistence, and determination. Just because people don’t see you moving does not mean you are not making moves. The more you work on your craft, the more you have to work on yourself. And sometimes you have to lose to win BIG.

I have said it before and I will say it again, “This is not the last time you will see me!”. Having my own TV show and a successful brand is bigger than chasing a dream; it is about fulfilling a destiny. I will fulfill mine while inspiring others to do the same.

Thanks #TeamJamika for all of your love and support. See ya soon!

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Caribbean Heat meets Southern Sweet on Home & Family

In case you missed it, I had such a great time cooking with crew of Home & Family on the Hallmark channel.  With reggae music playing in the background and delicious food and drinks on the menu, how could we not have a good time on set. I love blending the cuisines of my Caribbean and …

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Teasing Your Man’s Senses

Valentine’s Day is considered a day for love; unless you are newly single, then it might be the day of drunk texting your ex. (Hopefully that won’t be you.) This year ladies, don’t put all of the pressure on your man to make the day romantic; instead make your man feel special while setting the mood …

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FEED YOUR FACE

You always ask how my skin looks so great, well here is one of my secrets–my diet. Watch as I explain 6 foods you want to incorporate into your daily diet so can lose a few pounds and love the skin you are in. As promised… Creamy Balsamic Dressing Recipe 1/4 cup plain Greek yogurt (no …

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Chef Jamika’s Press Kit

Chef Jamika’s Press Kit

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Looking Good on Camera from a TV Pro

Are you ready for your close up? Well, it’s time to get ready! For some, being in front of the camera can be intimidating. After years of TV experience, I did this video to help anyone  look and feel great on any video or interview. Enjoy!

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Dream Big, Sacrifice Bigger

2015 has been a big year of change for me. After much prayer and consideration, my husband and I decided it was time to do something new. We decided to move. We did not just move to a new neighborhood or new city. We decided to leave everything behind in Atlanta and move literally across …

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Tips for a Great Romantic Meal

Looking to set the mood for that special someone? Well, Chef Jamika is to the rescue! 1. Do Your Research: Make sure you know the likes and dislikes of the person you are cooking for. Do some investigative work ahead of time and ask questions about favorite foods and wines. Make sure he or she …

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One Pot Wonder-Ful

Fall is my favorite time of year. I watch The leaves change color, I bring out my cute coats and boots, and on a cool day, there is nothing better than a hearty meal that makes me feel all warm inside. My White Chicken Chili is a Fall favorite of mine because it is so …

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Pizza Perfect

One of my favorite foods is pizza. As best I can, I want to stick to my New Years resolution of giving up white foods such as flour, rice, and processed sugar, while not giving up my passion for pizza! Well here came the challenge. I found a recipe online for Flourless Pizza. I thought, …

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How to Stand Out & Look Great at a Party

I go to a lot of parties. I plan a lot of parties. I have seen the good, the bad, and the Oh hell NO! When it comes to what to wear, I’ve picked up a few tips and here they are for you. First of all, come dressed to party! Don’t just wear a …

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The Perfect Grilled Steak

Who doesn’t love a thick, juicy steak? A steak done right may even cause a vegetarian to change his mind. Do you know how to grill the perfect steak? You may think you do, but that overcooked Frisbee you call a steak, ain’t working! Follow these simple tips to create the perfectly grilled steak. Tip …

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Homemade Steak Sauce

Sometimes you just can’t have steak without steak sauce. Here is my recipe for a quick and tasty steak sauce great for dipping, marinating, or sautéing. 1 cup ketchup 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar 1 teaspoon garlic powder Several dashes of hot sauce, your preference In a …

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