Foodies may hold up their nose to Ray's simplified methods — cans! frozen goods! a repellent hot dog here and there — but even Ray has admitted, ''I'm not a chef, I just cook.'' Chalk up Ray's mass appeal to knowing how real people shop and eat. Astonishingly productive, Ray has wrung her practical lifestyle into a full-on brand: three programs — her trademark meal-in-half-an-hour cooking show, the $40 a day travel guide, and a syndicated daily talk show — a lucrative cookbook series, and a magazine lay the foundation to the giggly 39-year-old's burgeoning empire. She's even coined a new term: ''EVOO'' (that's extra virgin olive oil, if you've been living under a rock) was officially inducted into Oxford American English College dictionary in 2006.
Photo from Every Day with Rachael Ray.