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Big Daddy's House - today's episode

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I like to use my hands as "tools" sometimes too, but for him to dip in his macaroni/mayo salad with bare hands and mush it all around was a little sickening on national tv. Blech!

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  1. I think I'm glad I was out at brunch while this episode was on. That does not sound at all appetizing.

    1. Glad to see I'm not the only one that was disgusted by that! After watching him lob spoonful after spoonful of mayo onto that macaroni, I was shocked when he dug his bare hands into the bowl and mixed it up.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Marge

        I saw the lineup of dishes for today's show and decided not to Tivo it. I'm glad I passed.

      2. Assuming the hands were clean, what's the big deal?

        1. Sometimes the hands are the best tool--- but you keep your hands out of the food as much as possible--- especially if folks are watching...

          You want your guests to feel good about eating your food, not wondering if...

          People would 'prefer' to see shiny utensils and tools being used properly...

          "Aaron invited us over for dinner? Let's say we're busy--- last time he was up to his elbows in the mashed potatoes and I think I swallowed a hair"...

          Use a giant spoon!

          3 Replies
          1. re: Mild Bill

            It wasn't just that he had his hands in there. He tasted a mouthful, found it lacking, re-spiced, and then dipped again. come on! I understand they are presenting a casual vibe but there's casual and there's sloppy. I do think that he has a lively and watchable half hour as compared to poor Amy's boring gourmet Next Door last year.

            1. re: lucyis

              Scripps obviously needs to hire better producers. If a TV "chef" doesn't know what's idiotic and what's acceptable, the producer is supposed to make things right. Of course, maybe the producer in this case goes to the bathroom and plunges his hands into the salad.

              1. re: mpalmer6c

                As I've noted on all sorts of threads regarding tv shows, one can't assume that *anything* about the show was his idea. This might have been something that TFN, the producers, etc wanted him to do for one reason or another.

                It is usually safe to assume that *nothing* on a TV show is by accident and that *everything* is pre-planned and intentional.

          2. The mixing-with-hands bit aside, I thought he made a good point about cooling the macaroni before adding the dressing, so it won't break down the mayo. I've always added the dressing to warm macaroni, but I won't do that any more.

            I've enjoyed his show so far. He seems much more at ease than I expected.

            I have to wonder why he hasn't mentioned his wife. (I know he has one, she was at FN when he won, and he wears a wedding band.) He talks about his kids, and in the last episode showed his brother and parents, but no wife. Maybe he's afraid that if she shows up, viewers will confuse them with the Neely's.

            1. I get the impression watching Aaron that, aside from the folks on Iron Chef, he's spent more of his life actually cooking than anyone on the network. While the hand tossed pasta may have looked a little mushy and gross, as long as his hands were clean it's not any different from kneading bread or pasta dough.

              I find Aaron gloriously unpretentious and I get the feeling his food must truly taste great. Never during a Next Food Network Star series have I heard the judges (including Flay) fawn over someone's food more.

              4 Replies
              1. re: slowcooker

                I think mixing pasta with mayonnaise is quite different from kneading dough. For one, dough gets cooked. As others have pointed out, there are some jobs for which bare hands are the best tools (kneading dough, mixing up meatballs/loaf, etc.) but stirring wet, oily mayo into cold pasta is, imo, better off being done with a large spoon. Regardless of how clean his hands were, I was envisioning the dressing getting under his nails, and to me, the visual of getting down and dirty with wet, creamy, oily, mayo was just gross.

                1. re: Marge

                  "he visual of getting down and dirty with wet, creamy, oily, mayo was just gross."

                  But "the visual" has nothing to do with "the reality" in terms of food safety. So again, as long as his hands are clean, what's the big deal?

                  1. re: jgg13

                    But the "visual" has EVERYTHING to do with the fact that tele"vision" is, actually by definition, "visual". So although he may have had the cleanest hands on the planet, and the macaroni salad may have been the most sublimely delicious food ever created, the "visual" of him digging around in creamy oily mayo with bare hands turned me (and apparently others) off.

                    1. re: Marge

                      I understand what you're saying, my point is that I don't understand why it would be such a big deal.

              2. I didn't see it, but I don't particularly find anything wrong with this, given it showed him washing his hands and provided he's not serving it to people in an audience, like with Emeril's show... but I recall many other FN's chefs getting their hands in, Rachael Ray, Paula Deen, Giada...etc. He showed the au natural way of thinking that most people (most I said!) use in everyday cooking.

                Personally I don't do this, as I don't like to get my hands all mucky, I keep disposable gloves close for the "hands on" (or hands in as the case maybe) jobs.

                1. I dunno. I think cooking professionals tend to get more weird about the hands. I think at-home cooks are used to doing it. Like it or not, Big Daddy is a show directed to the at-home cook, so while many might find that a public no-no as it's on television, it's being "down home" and "real" to the home cook.

                  To be honest, I find it bizarre looking when you see the master chefs putting dressing around the sides of bowls and then either flipping the bowl repeatedly to coat the lettuce, or something I saw a week ago where a chef was laboriously putting one lettuce leaf in at a time with tongs into the bowl of coated dressing. I was like: dude, you got gloves on your hand, stick them in. It's lettuce not freaking acid! hehe

                  4 Replies
                  1. re: HarryK

                    I made a comment earlier how very little on TV is accident and almost everything is *very* intentional ...

                    I hadn't thought about it at the time, but your first paragraph made me think of this. I think that Aaron has made a big fuss about using his hands to get down & dirty every episode so far (this ep it was "his god given spoon") - and I think multiple times per ep. This is *definitely* something that's designed to send some sort of message.

                    1. re: jgg13

                      jgg13, total agreement; I'm sure if's purposeful. And probably very nature for Aaron the home cook. Still I'm sure he did it the "other" way when working at the hospital kitchens.

                      1. re: HarryK

                        I cook at home. A lot. And I've never mixed a pasta salad with my hands. I find that professional cooks are more often going to toss a salad with salad dressing using their hands, and they plate more often with their hands vs. using tongs or kitchen utensils.

                        1. re: HarryK

                          HarryK what "other" way are you talking about? The use of the hands for mixing - even wet, oily, messy products - is very common, especially in non-commercial operations doing volume production. Personally, I think professionals use their hands for mixing far more than the home cook.

                    2. I watched this for the first time this weekend and noticed that the show has a rather dark red, or crimson, shade to it.

                      Is it me (or my TV), or is this something intentional?

                      Makes it almost seem like Aaron is cooking in Dante's Inferno ...

                      4 Replies
                      1. re: ipsedixit

                        I think his santa-red shirt kinda overpowered the camera... or maybe just our TVs.

                        1. re: slowcooker

                          I don't think it was his fire-engine red shirt cuz when he was in the backyard talking to his 'bro about the 'que they were going to have, it still had this weird red hue to it.

                        2. re: ipsedixit

                          Wow, so it wasn't just me. This show actually prompted me to adjust the color setting on my TV!

                          1. re: kmcarr

                            You jerks :) Now I'm going to notice it if they continue the trend.

                        3. Just finished watching today's episode. This was much better than last week. I couldn't possibly eat a meal that full of butter and cheese without having an EMT standing nearby..lol, but he gave plenty of good information/tips and his oven roasted prime rib looked luscious and done just like my husband likes.

                          I'm glad I gave this show another chance.

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: anni

                            I agree anni. I thought the hint about tipping the big chunk of meat on a potato wedge while browning was excellent. I'd never seen that idea before and it is a good one. He seems to look more "take charge".

                            1. re: lucyis

                              Not to mention, that's probably one tasty wedge of potato!