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Jul 21, 2005 07:45 AM

Is she another can opener?

  • m

Last night I subjected my husband to watching Sandra Lee's Semi Homemade Cooking - I occasionally find myself mesmerized by her "cooking." When Rachel Ray came up next, she was making a meal for when "you don't have time to go to the store", and started pulling things out of her cupboard. My husband asked "Is she another can opener?" I got a good chuckle out of that. I only wish that when I, like RR, get to the cupboard, all of the ingredients I need for that meal were right there on the lowest shelf, in plain sight.

Didn't post this to elicit a Sandra Lee/Rachel Ray rant - just thought the comment was funny.

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    1. Ever notice the "brand" names on the stuff Rachel pulls out of that stage set cabinet?


      8 Replies
      1. re: Chino Wayne

        Yes - I always wondered about that. Do they sit there at FoodTV and paste those labels on? They look really fake.

        1. re: Mari

          I notice her "generic" labels every time I happen to catch her show (as I need to make it clear that I would never intentionally tune in.) :-)

          I always laugh b/c she whips up a meal in 30 min. (and I think she cheats w/ commercial breaks; ie, commercial is 2 min. while she's been cooking for 5 min. real time) but must spend all day repackaging and relabeling.

          1. re: Carb Lover

            It's so that they aren't seen as endorsing a brand of food whose company hasn't paid for the privilege. You'll notice the same thing if you watch Good Eats carefully.

            1. re: Das Ubergeek

              Yeah, I know why her show does it, but it seems alot more efficient to blurr out or to visually conceal rather than to waste a bunch of paper, plastic, and time. Man, I'd hate to be the intern w/ that job.

              1. re: Carb Lover

                I bet it's cheaper to have an intern tape over labels than to have a graphic designer pixilate all that footage.

                1. re: Kimm

                  Why not position the can so that the label is not "forward", or is that something "the talent" is not capable of. ;-)


                  1. re: Chino Wayne

                    Because there are at least two and as many as five cameras hitting you from all angles... it's hard enough (believe me) to know which camera to face and to look natural on film; having to constantly adjust the can so you don't show the brand-name will make you look like you have a nervous tic.

                    Which, of course, would IMPROVE Sandra Lee's on-air personality, but then pretty much anything would do that.

                    1. re: Das Ubergeek

                      Giada always shows off the labels on her Everyday Italian show. OF course, they are usually RALPH'S generic brands!

      2. Sandra Lee is simply awful - you need to watch 2 or 3 shows to confirm that it's an actual show, not some type of heat induced hallucination.

        Check out her Kwanzaa Kake.

        Take one store bought angel food cake. Open a can of apple pie filling and ram it into the center, then slather liberally with canned frosting. Garnish with corn nuts and for the final festive touch, impale with 6 red and green dinner candles.

        The picture doesn't do it justice - it's *much* worse.


        14 Replies
        1. re: Bob Martinez

          But you can tell she's creative. She used red and green Christmas candles for her Kwanza Kake.

          1. re: Bob Martinez

            Oh gawd! That's hilarious!

            And they put Tony Bourdain's reruns at 4 in the morning.


            1. re: elmomonster

              You think that's bad? Behold the horror below.

              No, it's not what it appears - it's Sandra Lee's Hamburger Dogs.

              You too can commit this Semi Home Made Cooking Crime -

              1 1/4 pounds ground beef
              1 packet meatloaf seasoning2 tablespoons ketchup
              1/4 cup bread crumbs
              1 egg
              Hot dog buns
              Relish and chopped onion, for garnish

              Preheat grill to medium-high heat.
              In a large bowl, combine ground beef, seasoning packet, ketchup, bread crumbs, and egg. Mix until just combined; do not overmix. Shape into hot dog forms. Grill for approximately 8 to 10 minutes. Serve on hot dog buns with more ketchup, relish, and chopped onions.

              Serve it up to guests and just watch their faces.


              1. re: Bob Martinez

                I don't even what to go there .... that has to be one of the more revolting food items I've seen.

                1. re: MMRuth

                  And to think 7-11 sells cheeseburgers shaped like hot dogs. I always wondered what was in them!

                2. re: Bob Martinez

                  It's a seasoned hamburger in the shape of a hot dog. Boy, that sure is disgusting. I hope they outlaw this sort of dreck.

                  1. re: Bob Martinez

                    Wellll...we threw a Theme Party a few years back, which we called the (Poop) Dinner. Liverwurst extruded onto crackers from a cake decorator (plain tip); pureed spinach-and-lentil soup; mashed potatoes, with a very lumpy brown gravy served from a chamber pot; miniature meat loaves very much like the one in that picture, only baked...oh, and studded with whole-kernel corn.

                    It was all delicious, really, but our friends are still talking about it.

                      1. re: Will Owen

                        Did you make the Kitty Litter Cake for dessert??

                        This post also reminds me of a time at a restaurant when I ordered a chocolate terrine for dessert. I was presented with a plate with three or four brown "squiggles" on it. I looked at my wife and said, "Didn't I pick this up in the yard this morning?"

                        1. re: Ray

                          The Kitty Litter Cake recipe was distributed on the Internet about a month after the S*** Dinner, and of course all the attendees (and some others who hadn't been there but wished they had) sent it to me. No, we just had chocolate mousse...

                      2. re: Bob Martinez

                        As much as I like to rail on Sandra... A couple years agoI got home late from work, had to feed the kids. The only things on hand were ground beef and hot dog buns. Kids, tonight it BURGERDOGS. I was surprised at how much they liked them. When we watched that episode my oldest asked if she'd stolen my idea.

                    1. re: Bob Martinez

                      Don't forget that Sandra calls those corn nuts "acorns"...

                      1. re: Bob Martinez

                        First time I ever saw "Iron Chef" it was in Japanese, without translation or subtitles. I watched the entire show convinced that it was some over-the-top satire of...something. It was when they first had the guy from San Francisco. Turned it on next week, and there were subtitles, and that's when I realized these people were more or less in earnest.

                        Any truly entertaining food show is only about one extravagant gesture away from being a Monty Python version of itself.

                        1. re: Shep

                          Or a Saturday Night Live sketch. Remember the SNL sketch "The Delicious Dish" (a takeoff of Lynne Rosseto Casper's NPR show "The Splendid Table") where Alec Baldwin was playing a guest with a last name of Schwetty and he was talking about the Schwetty family recipe for meatballs? I don't know how they managed to get through that without laughing.

                      2. Carb Lover's link to Bourdain's eGullet interview was very revealing vis-a-vis Food Network's programming goals. His description of the empty suits that took over really does turn my stomach. It may be a place to get entertained (as with most other TV channels), but it isn't a place to learn anything about food.


                        4 Replies
                        1. re: applehome

                          In fact, I was watching FoodTV last night and noticed a new glossy self-promoting commercial on the station. A bunch of words flashed by (some mumbo jumbo like style, design, family, etc.) and at the end it says something like "Food Network: not just for cooking anymore." A very clear message about where the network and its producers are going...

                          But I will still watch since the reality junk on major networks is relentless. Can't wait for Bourdain's Travel Channel show on Monday!

                          1. re: Carb Lover

                            I cancelled my cable when it inched above $25/month. Just a personal lifestyle decision for me; I can get free DVDs from the library or gasp! read a book.

                            Recently though I stayed in a motel and was drifting asleep with the Food Network on. They had a feature on Kraft grated parmesan cheese. Followed soon after by a feature on Chef-Boy-Ar-Dee. I turned off the TV.

                            1. re: semmel

                              For some reason, evil forces have granted us free cable (ie, I don't think anyone's paying) at our current and last two rentals. I can't imagine paying anymore than $30/mo. for this crap. Everyone complains about FoodTV's decline, but that can be said about most programming these days. It's nice to get PBS in clearly for weekend cooking shows, and I'm looking forward to Bourdain's show on the Travel Channel. I really should read more though...

                              1. re: Carb Lover

                                What you need is Tivo. ( I have become a Tivo evengelist...they should pay me) With a super-premium sattelite subscription and Tivo, we've got more "good" TV than we can watch. Name your (guilty) pleasure, it doesn't matter if it comes on at 4 in the morning or if the only two things you want to see all day come on at the same time.

                                Whether you want to watch Tony Bourdain repeats or Thin Man movies or old episodes of Southpark or 5 hours a day Tour de FRance, Tivo has you covered.

                        2. Sandra Lee IS awful. She use canned/jarred/prepared ingredients when it would have been as easy to use fresh or make from scratch.

                          I like RR much better. She doesn't use prepared food as much as Sandra Lee. And I do occassionally pick up some good menu ideas from RR. I've even tried several of her recipes and really like them.

                          As for the labels, I was thinking that they are changed intentionally to avoid brand recognition/advertising.