Welcome to a very special interview with Kim Guleff, mom of Logan Guleff — aka @LoganJrChef Winner of MasterChef Junior Season 2.
The world of competitive Food TV is a roller coaster ride. You’re up one show and going home the next. For the kids who compete on shows like Fox/Gordon Ramsay MasterChef Junior or Food Network Kids Baking Championship it must be even more of a challenge to keep it in perspective. We sincerely hope all these kid chefs have a secret support in the wings… their mom or dad or perhaps an aunt or grandparent.
For Logan it’s a host of family and friends but the person who is especially “… relentless in my pursuit for Logan” is his mom Kim Guleff. Kim is far from what you might think of as a stage mom; her belief in her son and helping him achieve his dreams are an inspiration to any parent.
We wanted to know more about this amazing woman. Kim graciously agreed to tell her story. She lets us in on how food played a part in growing up in her Italian family, the first meal she and her mom served her now husband Tom, how she helps Logan balance, career, fame, just being a nice kid and so much more. I know you’ll love Kim as much as you love Logan!
I am Logan’s Mom too, and that makes me smile.
Diva Foodies: How much of an influence did food play in your family when you were growing up?
Kim Guleff: My Mother is Italian and so food was very central to our home culture. My mom taught us to can, garden, forage, and cook from scratch. My grandmothers could both cook, and I loved being in the kitchen.
Diva Foodies: When your husband Tom and you were dating did he romance you by preparing any special food or were you the cook who romanced him? What were your special foods/meals?
Logan with Dad Tom
Kim Guleff: Tom is easy to please, just a great burger and he is happy! I remember the first time he came for dinner, my mom made spaghetti and meatballs, and he asked for a knife – we were all confused. So, when he went to cut the meatball and of course it was fork tender and just perfect, he was hooked right there. Knife, for a meatball, really??
Diva Foodies: What is your favorite food to make your family and why?
Kim Guleff: I love preparing meals, the best ones for Logo – potato pancakes, burgers and soup. Tom – mixed grill, and roasts. Me – the fewest dishes!
Diva Foodies: What is your favorite food to have Logan make you?
Kim Guleff: Coffee, he has been making it for me since he was 2, with varying degrees of success, but he makes the best cup of coffee! It’s a treat to have him make it, and I love it!
— Logan Jr Chef (@LoganJrChef) October 21, 2015
Diva Foodies: We have to ask, where did the dapper bow tie idea come from? Does Logan’s dad wear a bow tie?
Kim Guleff: Well, Logo did a play and he wore a big bow tie, and the older performer -Wesley, told him, every well-dressed man needs a bow tie. So, I got them each one, as a gift for the end of the show. When he auditioned for the MasterChef Junior show in Dallas, he had a kind of western shirt, so we added the tie – my husband hated it, but the girls in the elevator at the auditions loved it. Before he left to film MasterChef, my good friend made him 14 overnight! And to be honest it suites him.
Chef Gordon Ramsay and Logan Looking Dapper
Diva Foodies: Yes, Kim. Agree! Those bow ties do indeed fit Logan . When was your ah ha moment when you realized that Logan had more than a hobby interest in cooking and that his talents were something very special?
Kim Guleff: I only have one child, and I am an older Mom, so I just honor all his interests. Logan is home schooled and cooking teaches math, reading, fine motor skills, discipline and more. I never realized other kids were not cooking. I mean at 4, he could make pasta better than me. At age 8 when he submitted the recipe for Jif’s most creative sandwich contest, I thought well, this talent may be something special.
Now, I truly believe he will be one of the premiere chefs in the world, he has gotten so much sophisticated and grown in the kitchen.
Diva Foodies: Logan had been in several food competitions prior to MasterChef Junior. However, MCJ is more than a food competition, it is reality TV entertainment. With that comes the production company edits and possibly very public disappointment. What were your thoughts as you and your family made the decision to go to California?
Kim Guleff: Logan was confident. I was terrified. I mean Gordon Ramsay is his idol, and food is his true deep passion. The chance we took was whether Chef would break his heart with a harsh critic. That, just had me truly scared.
Although Logan may not know every cooking technique, he is the true chef inside, if that makes sense.
Watching him cook during the pop up restaurant on MasterChef Junior and living his dream made it all worthwhile. He absolutely loved it. It’s more special than the finale of the show, to me.
Mom Kim, Logan, Dad Tom Celebrate Winning MasterChef Junior
Diva Foodies: We’ve had the pleasure of interacting with you and Logan on several Diva Foodies projects #FoodTVChat, Celebrate Love: Coloring eCookbook). We continue to be impressed by not only Logan’s talent but by his down-to-earth attitude and well, just being a really nice kid. With all the attention he’s receiving from celebrity chefs to movie stars and adoring fans how does he keep it in perspective? You and your husband are certainly doing something right.
Kim Guleff: Tom and I decided the day he was born on a mutual goal for Logan – to be a good person, follow his passion.
We don’t care what he does as long as he does it with virtue. It’s that simple.
Diva Foodies: How has Logan’s very public success impacted your family?
Kim Guleff: Most of the time we don’t notice it at all. He drives his career and we support him. I am fortunate to be able to work with Logan to help those dreams happen! Food wise, he’s always wanted his own cooking/food show, and his own cookbook. I do mean always even at 4 he would tell me he was going to be a celebrity chef.
Diva Foodies: Without a doubt we belive Logan will accomplish all! We loved reading your tweets on Logan’s handle as #momtweet Why did you begin to do that?
Kim Guleff: Logan doesn’t have a manager, or a PR team, so he’ll tell me what to tweet and type at times – but if I tweet my thoughts, I think the world needs to know, it is coming from mom.
Being authentic matters!
— Logan Jr Chef (@LoganJrChef) March 13, 2016
Diva Foodies: Do you enjoy participating on Twitter? Why?
Kim Guleff: Me, no, on my own I would probably have deleted Facebook. But I will do anything for Logan. Tom says I am relentless in my pursuit for Logan. It’s true, if he needs me to do something, I will.
Social media gives you just another window in what others are doing and thinking about food and cooking. It’s also a way to watch trends. And a way to support and encourage others.
Diva Foodies: What advice would you give moms whose children are considering competing on Food TV Shows?
Kim Guleff: If your child wants to do it, be aware they do control the edit and can lead them into saying or doing anything. It’s not all rainbows.
Mom Kim and MasterChef Junior Winner Logan
Diva Foodies: As in our tradition, we always toss the virtual mic back to the guest. Kim, please wrap this up anyway you wish.
Kim Guleff: Thank you for the time and the support. My advice is to teach your child, listen to them and watch the amazing things they can do. I love this journey, being Logan’s Mom. It’s the places we can go!
Connect With Logan