Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Iron Chef

From comments I received about the It's Almost Time For Sweeps post, I feel I must explain/defend my appreciation of Iron Chef and Iron Chef America.

Growing up, I never had much access to what you would call gourmet food. It was pretty straightforward – chicken, beef, rice, corn, potatoes…you get the idea. Our most exotic food was probably a Jell-O salad. Sad, I know. Don’t get me wrong – we were always well fed and taken care of.

So, with the prospect of cooking all kinds of new meals for two instead of an army, it leaves a lot of wiggle room to work with. I don’t like weird stuff, but I do like experimenting with new recipes and I absolutely love to bake (ask the LAN Party guys). I find that I always go back to the good old comfort foods, though. You just can’t beat a good helping of mashed potatoes and gravy or homemade chili.

I enjoy watching cooking shows. Well, some of them, anyway. I know tons of people are in love with Rachael Ray, but I can barely tolerate her. I love Good Eats with Alton Brown because it has that whole Sesame Street-esque crayon-making-vibe to it. I really like the new show Ham On The Street and have found a new appreciation for Everyday Italian with Giada De Laurentis. And I have fallen in love with Iron Chef and Iron Chef America. I’ll explain.

At first, I was captivated by the weirdo-guy who hosts Iron Chef. I didn’t know that Japanese people were ever that flamboyant and had to really wonder if he were, um, well, you know what I mean. I had to watch the beginning of the show just to laugh at the weirdo host and listen to him tell his story about the challenger and secret ingredients that always begin with, “If memory serves me correctly....” Then, the whole concept became entertaining to me. These guys weren’t just making meat and potatoes. They were really creating some weird things! Of course, the cuisine that Japanese people are accustomed to is completely different than what we Americans often find pleasing to the palette, even acceptable. So it has always been interesting to me to see what kinds of things these guys think up, cook, and the reaction of the judges. Of course, I probably wouldn’t eat 98% of the stuff they fix, but the fascination is there.

When it comes to Iron Chef America, I can stomach the food much better. Bobby Flay uses real stuff to make some pretty interesting foods. I would actually like to be on that tasting panel sometimes.

When it comes right down to it, it is a show that I can watch and be entertained by, or I can have it on and ignore it. I often times have it on at night when I’m ready to go to bed. I don’t feel as if I have to stay awake to watch it, and in fact, usually fall asleep at the exact same time…the commercial break just after the chefs have completed their dishes, before the tasting. So most of the time, I never know who won, but who really cares?

So there it is, my justification/explanation for why I like Iron Chef and Iron Chef America. The rest of you can hate it if you want to. I’ll continue to laugh at the weird Japanese guy and wish I could taste some of the Bobby Flay and Mario Batali dishes.

Note: I do detest those stupid commercials: “How do YOU Iron Chef?” Pin It

1 comment:

  1. Sorry, I still can't stand Iron Chef. I think it's the problem with the whole voice over deal. It irritates the crap out of me every time! And when people are under a time pressure like that, it makes me too nervous. It's all I can do to keep from having a nervous breakdown during the Rose Ceremonies on the Bachelor! :) hahaha