Monday, November 26, 2007

Thank You Emeril!!! I hate Food TV

I was informed today via blogger 'fishbowlny' that Emeril Live will no longer be taped for the 'Food Network'. Yes, the quotes are there on purpose; more on that later. I count myself among the chefs who have a great deal of respect for Emeril. He is the reason that the general public has a better knowledge about ingredients...he was there to help push along our food revolution in the United States...he actually pushed it over the top. We all get caught up in the BAM and how Tony Bourdain called him a sell out. Behind the BAM was a genius. Sure, you could find fault with his cooking on TV. Have you ever tried to demonstrate live in front of people? From someone who has, I'll tell you this: you compromise. The idea is that the audience is entertained and they get the general idea. If they want the uncompromised, hard core stuff they come to the resturant. As for Tony Bourdain calling him a sell out...look at Bourdain. He followed the money, too. He hasn't apoligized. Emeril got us all excited about food. Let's not lose that amazing passion!! Thanks Emeril!!!

Speaking of following the on to the (we like it easy, done in 30 minutes and partly pre-made) Food Network. I used to like watching the Food Network. As an aspiring cook, it was really interesting to be able to turn on the TV and learn from Emeril, Mario Batali, Bobby Flay and Ming Tsai. As the years have moved on, these chefs have been replaced by the wonder of 30 minute meals(how many cans and processed products can I whip into a catch-phrased schlock meal....I'd like to have a sammie with my stoup, hehehehe), a show actually called 'Semi Homemade', and a show that obviously chronicles the best food American has to offer in Diners, Drive In's and Dives. Congrats, Food TV. You've also chased the almighty dollar and are now contributing to the demise of our food culture. You are actually reversing the work that had been done by revolutionaries like Emeril. I'd rather stick a hot poker into my eye than watch Food TV. Don't even get me started on 'Iron Chef America'. There has to be a middle road, a person or idea that can bridge the gap between playing to the crowd(i.e. advertisers) and actually giving some interesting information about well produced interesting food. Hey guys, throw us a bone here. Michael Pollan's book was a best-seller. There has to be some interest the production of great raw materials by rock star artisan farmers all finished by a chef who has toured the farms and makes some interesting, entertaining food. Give me a call Food Network. I'll give you the show we all need. With regards to Iron Chef America...I'm ready Food TV anytime, any place, any ingredient. I'll heed the call. I may not like the concept, but I'm not stupid. I'd like to be on TV.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Thanksgiving is Really Mad at Us

Yes, folks that's right a holiday is actually mad at us. Why, you ask? Well, because through the infinite wisdom of major retailers everywhere we have decided to skip Thanksgiving. I'm not talking about the actual day. I'm talking about the build up. The anticipation and the things we most commonly associate with Thanskgiving. We're skipping it this year ladies and gentlemen. I hope you don't mind. Put up the Christmas decorations, listen to the carols 24 hours a day on the radio and please by all means buy the gingerbread spiced latte that Rachel Squawk Box is hawking at the Dunkin'. I love Christmas and everything that goes along with it. However, I also really enjoy Thanksgiving. It's a time when the family gets together to share a meal, friends are home from school and abroad, and we get a chance to reflect on one of the most American of holidays. Think about it. The reason for this holiday actually predates Independence Day. It's a very special day and we should celebrate not only the day, but also the run up. The problem is that Thanksgiving isn't nearly as lucrative as Christmas (that reminds me, I need to hang my turkey day stocking by the fire) so we decide to start Christmas earlier.( I actually saw a Christmas tree being erected right beside the Halloween candy...Note to everyone: Please continue to buy Halloween candy so that we start erecting Christmas trees right after Labor Day.) I can just see it....coming to a Wal-Mart near you.....Our End of Summer Labor Day Sale: the Christmas Wreath! I think the reason I really enjoyed and continue to enjoy celebrating Christmas is because in my house we weren't allowed to really start with Christmas until Thanksgiving was over. What a brilliant idea. Celebrate Thanksgiving and then there is a build up and a finite set of days to listen to Perry Como.

I guess what I'm trying to get across is to celebrate each coming day for what it is and let's not rush into things. Remember, we're celebrating the holidays, not the holiday regardless of what major retailers want you to think. Let's give Thanksgiving its due respect and ........ eat 'till we're sick then fall asleep!!!