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Jan 24, 2012 10:00 PM

Cooking Shows - Are We Really Using All Those Recipes That Are Popping Up Everywhere??? [moved from Home Cooking]

I cannot even imagine how many dishes we are shown how to make in just one week....then multiply that week after week. Do some of you just bypass the whole hoopla & consider it a bit boring?

If you Are watching the cooking shows, why are you it their presentation, their type of cooking or just plain good recipes that you think you might like to fix?

What do you think is the future of all these cooking "celebrities"? Is it time for a new batch to appear to twirl & spin & come up with another gimmick to entice us to buy their cookbook?

Points to ponder...bottom line, where is the future of cooking shows going to end up?

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  1. Everything goes in cycles. Right now cooking shows are very popular. I have waned on most of them. As the people get to the point where they just can't stand the idea of going to another restaurant, they find they have to learn to cook.

    I wasn't really watching for the entertainment so much as I wanted to learn how to cook. Watching cooking programs and reading instructional cookbooks is how I learned.

    I'm not really interested in being entertained. Nowadays, I watch Giada, "Diners, Drive-ins and Dives", Alton Brown (though I haven't seen a new show of his for a while), Chopped, America's Test Kitchen, and Ina Garten.

    Some of those programs I just watch for new ideas in general. Some I actually watch for cooking instruction. I do like to watch Guy Fieri on D,D & D mostly because I get the feeling that he is having a lot of fun. It's sorta like watching a Zydeco group. It isn't because they are fine musicians, It's because they are having more fun than you and can't believe they are getting paid for it. I get some great ideas from those diners out there.

    For the foreseeable future, we will continue to be barraged by new cooking shows. The bad ones will fall by the wayside, the good ones will be rewarded. I think as you get more experience, they get boring and you cull the programs you watch to just a few.

    5 Replies
    1. re: Hank Hanover

      Well said, Hank. At first I was watching every program, then I selected a few, then I just said, "ho hum".

      As for the Zydeco group, I never could get past looking at his spiked hair...then lo & behold, a gal appeared on her own show & by golly, she had the same spiked hair, I don't even remember her name....just a female version of Guy.

      Same pattern, they have a restaurant, they appear on a talk show, they get their own cooking show, they start selling pots & pans, cake mixes, doo dads & cookbooks, then they open another restaurant. That's the down side.

      Good side is, there are some darn good cooks & entertainers out there, depends on the mood of the day who is my favorite. I guess I lean toward Giada & Ina, although I am getting a bit tired of having lunch at the "Hamptons". Some of her recipes get a bit pricey for me. I used to love dear Paula, but got so weary of hearing about her sons & how she got started as the "bag lady". Her last cookbook turned me off completely since it was so many repeated recipes from previous books....if you are going to do mac & cheese, at least have a different version in each cookbook...jazz it up a little or Something!

      That's my take on the whole thing....well wait a minute...Alton Brown is good for a different spin on things...might just look him up again. And I really would like to check & see if of "Spike" has some new "bling" on...just think of all that food that gets under those rings. I just cannot concentrate on the food during that are right Hank...I think they would make a much better Zydeco group.

      1. re: cstout

        Ma'am ;

        I think you may be talking about a specific musical group. I was talking about Cajun music... Zydeco. You see it mostly in Louisiana. A lot of it is in French. There is usually a guitar, a squeezebox and a washboard in the group. Here is a link to some.

        For pure instruction, I like America's Test Kitchen. Keep in mind, as you gain skill the cooking shows will offer less and less for you.

        Wait a minute... you were talking about Guy Fieri and his spiked hair and the woman was probably Anne Burrell. Those two really must go to the same stylist.

        1. re: Hank Hanover

          Yes, I know what Zydeco music is & I was referring to Guy & that spike haired lady on the other show. Maybe those 2 could get together & have a brand new show featuring bikers as guests & maybe a few Harleys for decoration....something like that.

          I have never watched America's Test Kitchen... went cold turkey & pulled the plug on my TV...just get everything from the Internet. Can't say as I am missing anything to speak of, but I sure will gawk if I am at a friend's house & the TV is on.

          1. re: cstout

            Anne Burrell? Is that the other spike haired lady?

            1. re: jeanmarieok

              Yes, I believe Hank from a few postings ago said it was Anne Burrell.

    2. I watch cooking shows looking for inspiration and I've cooked many recipes from some shows. Like Barefoot Contessa. I'm bored with her show now though, she's repetitious.

      2 Replies
      1. re: rasputina

        I threw in the towel when she drained some mussels for a salad and all the juices went down the drain. What a crime.

        1. re: sr44

          Barefoot Contessa throwing away clam juice? big deal...she gets paid to cook....not think, besides it is all for "show" anyway, isn't that what they are telling us?

      2. I watch cooking shows because I love to watch people make things. I always have, ever since I was a kid. Craft show, wood working show, cooking show, Project Runway...I love watching the process of taking raw material and making something of it. Don't get me started on those How It's Made shows!

        When I cook, I use recipes from my personal repertoire (meaning recipes kept in my head or improvised), favorite cookbooks or surf the web for ideas, in that order. The percent probably works out to be 60/25/15.

        So, to answer one of your questions, I think the popularity of cooking shows will eventually die down and we won't see nearly as many as there are now. Same goes for "reality shows"... at least I hope so!

        1 Reply
        1. re: ttoommyy

          I enjoy going to YouTube to find a demo on some dish I want to make & enjoy that a lot...most of these folks put their heart & soul in trying to put on a good demonstration & of course Chowhound has some good videos too, so I guess I am still watching people cook food, just going elsewhere beside the cooking shows.

        2. Didn't you get the 'Media' board directive? There aren't any cooking shows on TV now; they have all been replaced with cupcake competition shows (and a few Chopped and ICA episodes). :)

          But seriously, the mix of cooking shows depends on the channel and, more importantly, the time of day. And all the channels try to give us new faces. That's what things like Next FN Star was supposed to do. But the new, untried shows most often appear Sunday mornings. Closer to prime time, you are more likely to see reruns of the tried and true shows.

          Some of the newest shows on FN and CC claim to give us healthy recipes.

          9 Replies
          1. re: paulj

            I still find the cooking shows on PBS stations to be the best: Everyday Food, Cook's Country, America's Test Kitchen, anything with Jacques Pepin, Sarah's Weeknight Meals, just to name a few.

            1. re: paulj

              NO, I did not get the "Media Board Directive"....darn it, I hate it when I am left out of the "loop". Do you think they will include "cake balls & cookie balls" too on the cupcake shows? It just amuses me when I see those folks mashing up "bought" cookies & then making something called cookie balls...who started this crazy thing anyway? Hmmmm, could be a new show..."Turning Purchased Items into Homemade"....sign me up!!!!

              1. re: cstout

                You're still on the lagging edge! Isn't that pretty much Sandra Lee in a nutshell?

                1. re: tcamp

                  Gee, you are so right...I forgot about she still around? Don't you just love her "tablescapes"?? Can you imagine buying all those doo dads to decorate a table? Where would you put all the stuff afterwards? And the team parties?? Oh well, just give me a few simple flowers in a very simple vase.

                  Yes, Sandra Lee fits right in with Ozzie & Harriet. Good ol days.

                  1. re: cstout

                    There are some nice craft shows on PBS (CreateTV) that will teach you how to make those doo dads. You might even save money by buying them with coupons. There's a show on competitive couponing.

                    As for storing them after, there are shows about hoarders, and people who make money buying abandoned storage lockers. And a show that teaches you do deal with waste of all sorts (latest episode dealt with turning biomedical waste into ordinary waste).

                    1. re: paulj

                      That's it...I am calling the cable company to turn me back on....I am missing out on entirely too much. Will I have time to watch the "new" cooking shows though? I really am interested in the shows that will turn ordinary veggies into works of art...that way I won't have to buy doo dads to decorate with. Afterward I can just eat them or put them in soup.

                      1. re: paulj

                        Don't forget all those "Rednecks on parade" shows like "Billy the Exterminator", "Swamp People", "Hillbilly Hand Fishing", and the several hog hunting shows. The list is endless.

                        What do you mean? How do I know so much about them? I watch them, silly.

                        1. re: Hank Hanover

                          I lean more toward the Alaska realty shows, with a preference for pilots and homesteaders over gold miners and fishermen. Maybe it's the bizarre foods, like sweet clams from a walrus stomach, and turbulence tossed birthday cakes.

                2. re: paulj

                  I occasionally will find myself in a conversation with someone who has just "discovered" a cooking show. People come to cooking at different points (some as kids, some when they're in college and move off campus, some when they set up a home...), so there's always a new audience who doesn't find Ina or Rachael or whoever repetitious.

                  I've been cooking at some level since I was a kid, but when I was a newlywed and we eventually got cable with the FN, that's all we watched for a while -- it was all new. I have occasionally picked up a new technique from cooking shows (Rachael's "garbage bowl" is often convenient when I'm trimming/peeling a quantity of veggies, although I never call it a G.B.) or absorbed some insights that come out later when I'm doing a different recipe. The most recent TV recipe I've made was Alton's "free range fruitcake." (A big hit!)

                3. I watch cooking shows for ideas and inspiration. I have made some of the things I've seen, but they can be kinda hit and miss.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: ChrisKC

                    Travel food shows give me more ideas than most instructional ones. Yesterday I learned about a burn-chile stew from the Yucatan on Chucks Week Off. Bizarre Foods America (Twin Cities) was interesting even if I wasn't inspired to try anything new (well, maybe I'll get some transglutimate one of these days, and glue a bunch of pigs tongues together). Actually that last bit was from an online video clip.

                    Often I'll learn about something while watching tv for its entertainment value, and actually learn the details from a book or someplace online.

                    1. re: paulj

                      Bizarre Foods America...they actually have a show like that & people actually watch it? Heck, just come to my hometown grocery deli & you will see the real meaning of bizarre. If they did not have signs in front of every tray of food, you would not guess in a million years what it actually is. My friend ordered an "egg roll" & I swore it was a "pig in blanket". With much discussion I grabbed it from her & told the deli lady it was an pig in blanket, not an egg roll. She agreed. Case closed. This is the truth.

                      Please don't watch those Bizarre Foods shows, they will give you nightmares.