I am a devoted fan of Ina Garten, the “Barefoot Contessa.” Does she have any children? —Clara Murphy, New Madrid, Mo.
As a fan of Garten’s, you know from watching her Food Network series that the only family member she ever has on the show is her husband Jeffrey, who is a professor at the Yale School of Management. She is extremely private about the rest of her relatives. But in her 2002 Barefoot Contessa Family Style cookbook, she wrote, “Family has a traditional context, but today it’s not as simple as two parents with two-three kids. It’s about relationships. It’s about people who are bound together by love and a sense of being responsible for one another. It’s spouses with no children, like Jeffrey and me.”
So there’s the answer to your question.
The interesting thing about Garten is when she became the owner of the Barefoot Contessa specialty food store in the Hamptons in 1978, she had not been working in the food industry, but rather at the White House Office of Management and Budget. She put her business skills to work and built the 400-square-foot store into a 3,000-square-foot emporium before selling it to her employees in 1996, while reserving the right to the Barefoot Contessa name.
The store has since closed, but Garten continues its legacy through her series of cookbooks, the first of which was published in 1999, her TV series, and, most recently, the Barefoot Contessa Pantry products, a line comprised of baking mixes and sauces.