Chrissy Teigen—model, author, new mom, and social media star—is having a huge year.

The co-host of Spike TV’s “Lip Sync Battle” worked at The Lab in Costa Mesa and was discovered at Jack’s Surf Shop in Huntington Beach before becoming one of the most photographed women in the world. This year she released her cookbook “Cravings,” gave birth to daughter Luna, and has been busy mocking Donald Trump on Twitter.

Chrissy Teigen
Photograph by Aubrie Pick

Since appearing in Sports Illustrated’s swimsuit issue in 2010, Teigen has cultivated an enormous online following for her outspoken views.“Three years ago I made it my mission to troll Donald Trump, but then it was for fun. Now it has become important to take a stand against someone who is dangerous to our country. This is way more important now.”

Teigen’s tweets go beyond poking at Trump or arguing with followers over gun control and other issues. She employs a snappy, slightly subversive but good-natured voice to point out the humor in herself, her dreamy husband (singer John Legend), her mothering skills, and the whole celebrity thing.

“John and I laugh about it all the time—about how silly it (fame) is.We make fun of it and poke fun ateach other on social media abouthow everything gets so blown outof proportion. Laughing at it keeps us grounded.”

Jason Quinn, chef-owner at Playground in Santa Ana, worked with Teigen on MTV’s “Snack-Off” and says Teigen has been to Playground twice. When they met on the first day of filming in 2014, and she walked in with a 15-person entourage, he assumed she might be standoffish. “She sat down next to me and said, ‘Hey, can you come over and help me fix my pho?’ So we ended up going to her beautiful house that night and made pho. The whole crew.”

Teigen loves to eat, and “Cravings” is filled with rich, homey food you wouldn’t expect a model to eat. Teigen’s father used to make hearty meat‑and‑potatoes meals such as corned beef and cabbage. One of her favorites is her father’s mega-calorie “Dutch Baby Pancake,” which she describes as a “fluffy dough bucket that acts as vessel to transport buttery syrup and powered sugar into your mouth hole.” She says it was one of her most-liked Instagram photos. “If you make it, be sure to sift the flour and use room‑temperature milk.”

While there are many recipes inspired by her dad, Teigen devoted a chapter to her mom’s Thai cooking, dishes she says took her longer to try and were harder to learn. “Of course I was a daddy’s girl, so it was a long time before I came to appreciate my mom’s cooking. Thai food can be daunting and scary, but I wanted to include things that take a long time and have a lot of steps so people can feel they accomplished something.”

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