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Welcome to the Good, the Bad, and the Unfathomable! Feel free to talk about TV chefs - positive or negative. And remember, a difference of opinion is not an attack.

The Next Food Network Star

Posted By Padraigin on Jun 24, 2007 at 6:25PM

OK - anyone watching? Here's my take of who's left:

Rory - can't be easy to talk with those big old teeth in her mouth. A little annoying.

JAG - Stop it. You're not all that and you lied about your experience and your military background. So shut it.

Amy - Removing the stick from her ass would be a good start.

Paul - I've seen bitchy hon, and you really ain't it. Rory commented just now that "Paul is a professional gay man" - I wasn't aware one could be professionally gay. But if anyone could, it would be Paul.

Salmon - How do I love thee? You can cook. Food Network doesn't want people who can actually cook anymore. Since I love thee, you will probably be gone tonight.

Adrian - Eye candy and some nice skills. You'll probably leave soon, too (see Salmon above)

As for the judges: Oy. Yeah, let's have the height of douchbaggery - Guy Fieri - actually act like he knows something about having a personality. I liked Duff. Bobby Flay was actually sardonic during his turn and that amused me. Giada, I don't know - she gets in hookerface mode when on this show.

ETA: (Don't read any further if on the West Coast)












yup - knew Salmon was a goner. Never fails.

Celebrity Chefs on the Red Carpet

Posted By Food on Feb 27, 2007 at 12:16PM

Hey guys, just wanted to make sure you didn't miss out on these photos of Food Network chefs on the red carpet.

Cat Cora! Talk about transformation, I barely recognized her. And Alton, I heart him in this suit.

Coverage Part 1
Coverage Part 2

Rachael Ray Food... um... porn? (disclaimer: does not contain any REAL porn. That would be disgusting considering the topic.)

Posted By Padraigin on Feb 25, 2007 at 11:37AM

Yeah, she gets off on her job...

Tagged with: yummo, yum, rachael ray

ruhlman.com: Guest Blogging: A Bourdain Throwdown

Posted By SaraSmile on Feb 16, 2007 at 1:01PM

So I am not really sure if this qualifies as a bookmark, but I was reading this post on Mike Ruhlman’s blog written by Anthony Bourdain, former executive chef of Brassiere Les Halles in NYC and talking TV head himself, about the good, bad, and ugly on Food Network. His post is well-written and though I largely agree with him, particularly in his analysis of Food Network stars - he gives Mario Batali his deserved credit, and serves up considerable ire to Rachael Ray and creepy Sandra Lee - I can’t help but feel that had his travel food show been picked up by Food, he would have stayed away from the keyboard.

It is a quick read if you are interested, and I am curious to hear other reactions. Do we agree with Bourdain? What are his motivations behind the post? What kind of reaction do you think he’ll be met with from this cooking/entertainment community?

Top Chef Spoiler

Posted By colormesticky on Jan 30, 2007 at 1:19PM

Don't read it if you don't want to know who wins.

Tagged with: spoilers, top chef

Ina Garten and Ellie Krieger - lookalikes?

Posted By Dana Forman on Jan 20, 2007 at 10:32AM

My boyfriend thinks I'm crazy, so I need some validation here.

I think that Ina Garten, of "The Barefoot Contessa" looks like an older, heavier version of Ellie Krieger of "Healthy Appetite with Ellie Krieger." Seriously, I think Ina could be Ellie's mother. Or a future version of Ellie, after Ellie gives up the healthy lifestyle.

What do you think? Am I crazy, or do they look very much alike?

Tagged with: ellie krieger, ina garten

Who is your favorite chef on Food Network?

Posted By Dana Forman on Jan 7, 2007 at 1:18AM

Also, tell me, who is your LEAST favorite?

Tagged with: food network

Sandra Lee Thanksgiving Special... the next Generation

Posted By Padraigin on Nov 20, 2006 at 9:42AM

Oh my. What can I say but Oh My.

First, the menu:

Sweet Onion Tartlets
Prosciutto Wrapped Figs
Cranberry Molds
Garlic and Herbed Early Peas and French Beans
Buttermilk Mashed Potatoes
Roasted Butter Herb Turkey
Turkey Dripping Gravy
Cornbread Dressing
Mayflower Martini
Sweet Biscuit Wreath
Indian Pudding

Doesn't sound so bad, huh? Don't let the menu fool you. This is, after all, semi-homemade

SWEET ONION TARTLETS: Starts off good. Caramelized vidalia onions and a normal savory custard. But then she has to toss in the Golden Onion Soup packet (not necessary - if you need a little chiken or beef flavor, use a little thickened stock) and Monterey Jack Cheese (I would have used Gruyere or Swiss - those are more compatible). On the 1-5 scale, 1 being retching in the bathroom and 5 being shocked that she got something right, I would actually give this recipe a 3.5 - 4. It's really not bad and easy to fix.

PROSCIUTTO WRAPPED FIGS: Again, not bad, Sandy Lou. There's the small matter of the honey and pumpkin pie spice glaze, but that is easily fixed by simply pretending she didn't fuck up the recipe by adding some crappy glaze. I give this recipe a 3 - for the glaze and because figs belong in newtons.

CRANBERRY MOLDS: Hope she isn't inviting kids to her dinner because these are basically choking hazard jello shots in 4 inch molds. Seriously: cranberry juice cocktail, sugar-free cranberry gelatin, orange flavored vodka, whole berry cranberry sauce, orange zest, chopped pecans, fresh cranberries and mint for garnish. As a shooter, I give it a 4 (loss of a point for the pecan choking hazard), as a side dish, I give it a 2.

GARLIC AND HERBED EARLY PEAS AND FRENCH BEANS: What a treat. Frozen veggies! Half and Half! Cognac! A packet of garlic herb sauce mix! Salt and Pepper! Yum yum yum. And then she claims it's better than the usual green bean casserole. Yeah, but only because of the booze, you bubble headed blonde lush! I give it a 2 because, hey, it's the holidays.

ROASTED BUTTER HERB TURKEY: Again with the packets of high sodium crap. The garlic herb sauce makes a reappearance, and something called fresh herbs poultry herb blend. And because it's just too difficult to take a tukey's temp with a real thermometer, she recommends a plastic pop up one. Still, despite the packets of crap, it's OK. I give the turkey a 3. It's nothing special, but it won't kill you. Most likely. The gravy was fairly normal, but she added more poutry seasoning to it.

BUTTERMILK MASHED POTATOES: OK, this is scary. A bag of frozen roasted potatoes (basically fancy french fries), a packet of alfredo sauce mix, buttermilk, butter, chives, all mashed together. I give this a 1. On the food network site, they show actual potatoes used, but NO NO NO. SHE USED FANCY FRENCH FRIES AND MASHED THEM UP WITH LOTS OF NASTY SHIT!!!! I SAW IT. OK. I'm calm now.

CORNBREAD DRESSING: I have no words. Well, I do, but none of them are particularly nice. Egg, chicken broth, store brought cornbread, frozen diced onions, Italian Herb Marinade Mix (packet, of course), water chestnuts (which she seems to think are the same as regular chestnuts, but Nat King Cole didn't sing about Water Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire... but I digress), creamed corn, and Monterey Jack Cheese. Yes. Monterey Jack Cheese. With creamed corn. And water chestnuts. in a corn bread base. Excuse me, the porcelain god calls.

SWEET BISCUIT WREATH: Not sure WHERE or WHEN it's supposed to be served. On the show, she said it was the bread on the table. But who wants to eat leaf shaped biscuits rolled in sugar and pumpkin pie spice as part of dinner? Ands frankly, it's not that appealing as dessert either, especially with the slop in a crock pot she has prepared for that course.

MAYFLOWER MARTINI: Pfft, Cranberry martini, complete with choking hazard fresh cranberry garnish.

INDIAN PUDDING: Yes, Sandra Lee. The Indians... er... Native Americans certainly loved to fire up the crock pot, fill it with INSTANT butterscotch pudding, INSTANT corn muffin mix, milk, molasses, eggs, cinnamon, and ginger and cook all that instant stuff for three hours.

At least her table looked less assy than usual.

Some Alton for Pad

Posted By audreystar on Oct 29, 2006 at 12:55PM

Sandra Lee's Safari Episode from last year.

Posted By Padraigin on Oct 29, 2006 at 8:21AM

I originally wrote this for a friend's blog on cooking:

Hell is a tentscape in Faux BelAire. Actually, I believe that this episode demonstrated the Sandra Lee version of Dante's circles of hell (OK, Sandra Lee's Semi Circles of Hell...)

Circle 5: The Circle of Corn Kebabs. What the hell was UP with that? Who in their right mind skewers ex-frozen corn cobs with pearl onions and cherry tomatoes? And especially when she only left the mushy ex-frozen corn on the grill pan (which apparently she invented) for a minute and never even turned them over. In this circle, the inhabitants spend eternity with dull skewers and frozen corn cobs.

Circle 4: The Circle of Butternut Squash Risotto. There was just WAY too much going on here. And frozen chopped onions add a whole layer of bitterness to the dish. All those ingredients and she uses prepackaged risotto MIX and Kraft Fauxmagian cheese-ish substance? Why not just buy good arborio and fresh cheese? And why do you have to use a BROKEN glass as a mold? Eternity in this circle is spent breaking glasses to mold this slop onto a dish placed precariously over an upside down cup. Oh wait, that's Sandra lee's life...how sad.

Circle 3: The Circle of Berry Febreezes. Hell, she didn't know what they were called either. But the former bartender in me shudders at the thought of raspberry schnapps (HOLY SUGAR SHOCK!), raspberry vodka, and a spash of ginger ale served in a pitcher. Is she trying to KILL her guests? Of course, then she slops in some grenadine. Freak. Inhabitants of this circle spend eternity acting like Ty Pennington without his ritalin and doing forced sobriety tests.

Circle 2: The Circle of Jarred Minced Ginger. Eternity is spent having one's palate removed from one's tongue and placed in the right position. Over and over again.

Circle 1: The Circle of Zebra Mango Chicken. Yes. Let's buy a shriveled looking rotisserie chicken, brush it with Mango Glaze (or water glaze, or WD40 glaze, since Sandy said we can substitute pretty much anything we wanted for the mango and it would still be delicious), shove a couple of toothpicks into mango slices, slap 'em on the shriveled chicken, and toss in the oven where somehow, with the magic of the ages, the chicken emerges plump and juicy and full of mango-ey goodness. Except not. And be sure to take out the toothpicks. But don't untruss the bird. Because eternity is spent actually eating this shit and flossing with the culinary rubber bands used to truss the chicken that she never ONCE mentioned removing from the shriveled bird of Satan.

Ah yes. Hell is a tentscape in Faux BelAire and that poor dog is the poster canine of suffering.