Since joining ESPN as a SportsCenter anchor in March 2013, Jaymee Sire has shown an ability to mix all the different ingredients of a sports day into a tasty stew that satisfies even the hungriest sports fan’s appetite.
Mixed metaphors aside, Sire has also brought a deep love of food — cooking it, eating and blogging about it at her popular website, “e is for eat” — to the network.
Front Row caught up with Sire to discuss her first few months at ESPN, her culinary delights and what she thinks would be a good meal to complement her SportsCenter anchoring duties.
What’s your transition to ESPN been like?
My transition to ESPN has been relatively smooth, but challenging at the same time, if that makes any sense. There are so many talented people here that it forces you to be at your absolute best every single day. However, we also have so many amazing resources here — from the hair and makeup department to the researchers and everyone in between — that it allows you to really concentrate on writing, highlights and interviewing.
What has been the one thing that has surprised you most about ESPN?
One of the things that has surprised me about ESPN is how accessible and willing to help everyone has been. If you want to have a meet and greet with [ESPN President] John Skipper, all you have to do is ask — and I did! Similarly, if you reach out for feedback or guidance from a manager, you will rarely ever get turned down.
How did you become a certified “foodie”? What does it mean to you that your site has more than 1 million page views?
I think my love of food and cooking started in middle school. As part of our weekly chores, my sister, Heather, and I were required to cook our family dinner once a week. It was to be balanced with a protein, veggie and starch, and it had to be aesthetically pleasing as well. My food obsession was elevated when I studied abroad in Spain my senior year of college, constantly sampling new flavors and cuisines as I ate my way through Europe. This passion was further enhanced during my time in San Francisco, as I was inspired by fresh produce and world-class restaurants on a daily basis.
I love my job because I get to tell stories. I started eisforeat.com as a way to tell a different type of story. . . one through food. It began strictly as a hobby and creative outlet for me. To have it reach 1 million page views in less than two years’ time is both gratifying and motivating.
What would be the perfect viewer’s meal to accompany a SportsCenter that you’re anchoring?
Great question! Definitely no bell peppers. I have an irrational hatred for that vegetable but will eat pretty much anything else, including brussels sprouts, which are my favorite veggie. I think the meal would have to start with some fancy cheese and “bubbles.” That is my weakness.
For the main course, I always say my last meal on earth would be a carne asada burrito from San Diego, so let’s go with that (with extra hot sauce!).
I’m also from Montana and love anything huckleberry, so perhaps a vanilla crème brulee with Montana huckleberries for dessert.