Ayesha Curry Is "Just Trying to Keep It Together"
When Ayesha Curry utters the word "badass" out loud, she can't help but break into giggles. "I don't ever get to say 'badass' in my house because of the kids," she recounts to the camera for InStyle's Badass Women series. If they don't already know it, her adorable brood — 8-year-old Riley, 5-year-old Ryan, and 2-year-old Canon — with NBA star Steph Curry will soon realize that their mother is, in fact, the most badass of them all. She's a chef, cookbook author, TV personality, philanthropist, entrepreneur, and newly minted producer — calling Curry a jack-of-all-trades would be a vast understatement.
Growing up as a mixed-race Canadian in Markham, Ontario, Curry, whose mother is of Jamaican descent, was immersed in a melting pot of cultures. "Any block you go on, there's different types of food and people," she says of her diverse upbringing. As a young girl, she kept busy cooking for her family and friends. "It's still my love language — it's how I show people I care and make them happy." Curry went on to spend her high school years in North Carolina, where she met her now-husband, and presumably whipped up some meals for him too.
Shortly after tying the knot, Curry started a food blog, then a YouTube channel, where she shares recipes, lifestyle content, and a peek into her home life to her 570K subscribers. In one of her viral videos, "Chef Curry With The Pot," Curry and her husband dance and lip-synch to a remix of Drake's 2014 single "0 to 100/The Catch Up" — specifically the lyrics "I been Steph Curry with the shot / Been cookin' with the sauce, chef, curry with the pot, boy." If anything, the 48-second clip will make you desperately want to eat and hang out at the Curry's.
Fortunately for her followers, Curry offered the next best thing to a dinner invite when she released her first cookbook, The Seasoned Life, in 2016. Rife with relatively quick and easy-to-make dishes like game day chili and endearing family anecdotes, the book is one that newbie chefs can find relatable, especially considering the author scraped it together with hardly any help. "I was the food stylist, I developed all the recipes, the storytelling, and my friend Caroline shot the book with me," Curry said. "It was really down to the nitty-gritty getting your hands dirty throughout the whole process, but it's something that I'll always remember, and I'm grateful for that experience."
Fast-forward eight years, Curry still finds it hard to believe that she has a full-fledged career in food, and then some. When she was first starting out, she confesses, "I didn't see very many people in the space that looked like me, and so I didn't know it was an option." As the founder of Sweet July, a burgeoning brand including a brick-and-mortar store, product line, and magazine, Curry hopes to create a welcoming and inclusive community around eating. The summer month holds a special meaning for Curry, who was not only married in July, but birthed all three of her children then too. "It's when I would have the happiest time of my life," she says, emphasizing her hope that others will find their own metaphorical "Sweet July" and incorporate it into their daily lives.
Most recently, Curry delved further into the entertainment space with Sweet July Productions. Her first project, a reboot of the beloved '70s game show Tattletales on HBO Max, will be a joint venture, with her and Steph serving as hosts and executive producers. She also co-owns International Smoke, a Bay Area pop-up restaurant that specializes in global cuisine, and Domaine Curry, a Napa Valley winery producing big bold wines. "I love making people happy with the food that I make, or the recipes that I develop, or the products that I put out into the world," Curry says. "I love spreading joy in that way. It's just a really special space to be in — to be able to make people happy through something as simple as a delicious meal."
Another way Curry spreads joy is through her philanthropic work. Launched in, you guessed it, July, right before the pandemic hit, the Curry's foundation, Eat.Learn.Play., works to feed children in low-income neighborhoods. To date, the nonprofit has served more than 15 million meals to families in the Oakland community.
With so much on her literal and figurative plate, it's borderline mind-boggling how Curry does it all. For those who want to be a badass, she has a piece of advice: "Have grace with yourself." As for her? "I'm just trying to keep it all together." We'd say she's doing pretty great.
Badass women show up, speak up, and get things done.
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