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Gifted Gourmet

COOKING UNDER FIRE from PBS: April 27 premiere

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So, have the 12 finalists been chosen? Would my friend have been notified by now if he were chosen?

thanks. I'm really looking forward to watching this show...


"After all, these are supposed to be gutsy spuds, not white tablecloth social climbers."

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The finalists have been chosen and I believe notified as of today. With any luck though, there will be more opportunities for your friend in the future.

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Michael, Any Chicagoans get picked?

All the best,

Bill Daley

Chicago Tribune


Bill Daley

Chicago Tribune

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The finalists have been chosen and I believe notified as of today.  With any luck though, there will be more opportunities for your friend in the future.

There will be--and thank you for replying again, Michael. I was as anxious as he was.

I'm really excited for this show...

take care.


"After all, these are supposed to be gutsy spuds, not white tablecloth social climbers."

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Fairly harsh words from the Boston.com (Boston Globe) review linked above:

PBS is selling its new reality series, ''Cooking Under Fire," as ''reality TV that feeds your brain." That's like Fox promoting ''American Idol" as a graduate course in democracy and capitalism, or ABC advertising ''The Bachelor" as a seminar in the psychology of love. It's just a hunk of fat-blobbed baloney that only feeds your cynicism.

=R=


"Hey, hey, careful man! There's a beverage here!" --The Dude, The Big Lebowski

LTHForum.com -- The definitive Chicago-based culinary chat site

ronnie_suburban 'at' yahoo.com

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I try not to read reviews in advance of a show or movie, I like to see something first on its own terms, then go back and read the review. Despite getting dissed by someone in the Globe, who I fear might take PBS and WGBH (Boston) just a little too seriously, I'm looking forward to tonight's two episodes.

However, if any of you are like me, don't go to the otherwise very good PBS website about the show and poke around too deeply: it is revealed in the Episode 2 journal entries just who gets voted off the island and which other competitor had to apologize for screwing up bigtime.

Consider this a spoiler alert.

(Oh, and eGullet.org is not listed as an online resource, though a bevy of blogs of varying quality and pretentiousness are.)


Steve Klc

Pastry chef-Restaurant Consultant

Oyamel : Zaytinya : Cafe Atlantico : Jaleo

chef@pastryarts.com

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I expect honest reactions from you folks. Reviews have been across the board, from pans to thumbs way up. TV guide gave it a very high rating, better than the estimable Penn and Teller, in fact. Wash Post said good show but notes that the judges are not professional entertainers and it shows (wooden I think was the word--regarding myself, in fact, the great white lummox, it's certainly true, though I learn as I go, and I daresay become quite fashionable by episode 6). Other reasons for pans were, same old cheesy reality show gimmicks, or reality-show lite. I do know the show gets stronger with each successive one. There was very little scripting (except when the wooden hosts or the great white lummox had to convey actual information) and nothing was staged. I think it will grow stronger as other chefs become a part of each episode. So again--if you watch do so with an open mind. Then feel free razor away...except for you bourdain, if you're reading this on your blackberry as your rickshaw tools down a cobblestone alley, or vegas is off and I'm sending Todd in my stead...

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(Oh, and eGullet.org is not listed as an online resource, though a bevy of blogs of varying quality and pretentiousness are.)

Very curious why they picked and listed the blogs they did. What was the criteria for those choices?

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Wash Post said good show but notes that the judges are not professional entertainers and it shows (wooden I think was the word--regarding myself, in fact, the great white lummox, it's certainly true, though I learn as I go, and I daresay become quite fashionable by episode 6). 

Yeah, the Providence Journal food writer (who hadn't seen episode one, she admitted...??) said that you were extremely knowledgable. Like the date with the great personality or something.... :huh:

But we sure love the great white lummox that you are, Michael! :wub: Of course, we'll also give you lots of merciless, blunt feedback. Wouldn't be the eGullet Society if we didn't, now would it?


Chris Amirault

camirault@eGstaff.org

eG Ethics Signatory

Sir Luscious got gator belts and patty melts

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Well, the jackets are quite spiffy and make the three of you look like incredibly intimidating, wooden, great white lummoxes....lummoxi?

At least there is a program on prime time that has actual cooking on it, as opposed to how to wrap a Tootsie Roll or make a Philly cheese steak from Steak Um or how many hot dogs Al Roker can eat since he got his stomach stapled.

PS: Duke sucks.

Angela


Edited by Angela Alaimo (log)

"I'm not looking at the panties, I'm looking at the vegetables!" --RJZ

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I predict Katsuji Tanabe and/or Yannick Marchand make it to the end.

Next week my opinion may change. :biggrin: But I doubt it.


Robert R

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Just watched the first two episodes back to back. 20 minutes of interesting cooking surrounded by 40 minutes of embarrasing melodrama. It frankly made me feel bad to see what I assume to be relatively talented, dedicated people taking part into a PBS-sanctioned version of "Who Wants to Marry a Millionaire."

The same reality show soundtrack and faux-glitz, the same post-rejection interviews, the same contrived conflicts...it made me feel nauseous instead of hungry. It's not about cooking. It makes Rachel Ray look serious.


I'm on the pavement

Thinking about the government.

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I watched tonight, and I could see both high and low points. It's just entertainment, not meant to be taken too seriously. This being the first episode, I'm willing to give it another shot before I pass judgement. But I loved watching everyone in Seattle butchering that poor salmon! I thought Ming came off pretty good when he browbeat the kid about 'losing' his pot, and Ruhlman is obviously only there for his good looks. When they were all together in Chicago, they looked like they were the heads of the food Mafia families!

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Just watched the first two episodes back to back.  20 minutes of interesting cooking surrounded by 40 minutes of embarrasing melodrama.  It frankly made me feel bad to see what I assume to be relatively talented, dedicated people taking part into a PBS-sanctioned version of "Who Wants to Marry a Millionaire." 

The same reality show soundtrack and faux-glitz, the same post-rejection interviews, the same contrived conflicts...it made me feel nauseous instead of hungry.  It's not about cooking. It makes Rachel Ray look serious.

Here, here. I just finished watching the first episode. Ummm... who edited this? I can't help but think that some folks took the bait and were made to look like assholes. As for the salmon, yes some of the folks who auditioned butchered it. But I wasn't so impressed with Ming Tsai doing a demo either. Sorry, I really want to like him, I do like him and I think he has his talents. But it was a bit sad, not like he displayed oodles and oodles of finesse with salmon compared to those he was tsk,tsking on the show.

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Good for a giggle, but rather more reality show-ish than I'd like.

Though I must admit to feeling quite smug about my ability to generate a very tidy 1/4" dice out of an onion. Some of the people auditioning had apparently never actually examined the interior of an onion.


Can you pee in the ocean?

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Just watched the first two episodes back to back. 20 minutes of interesting cooking surrounded by 40 minutes of embarrasing melodrama. It frankly made me feel bad to see what I assume to be relatively talented, dedicated people taking part into a PBS-sanctioned version of "Who Wants to Marry a Millionaire."

The same reality show soundtrack and faux-glitz, the same post-rejection interviews, the same contrived conflicts...it made me feel nauseous instead of hungry. It's not about cooking. It makes Rachel Ray look serious.

Here, here. I just finished watching the first episode. Ummm... who edited this? I can't help but think that some folks took the bait and were made to look like assholes. As for the salmon, yes some of the folks who auditioned butchered it. But I wasn't so impressed with Ming Tsai doing a demo either. Sorry, I really want to like him, I do like him and I think he has his talents. But it was a bit sad, not like he displayed oodles and oodles of finesse with salmon compared to those he was tsk,tsking on the show.

I was thinking the same thing. Not very impressive filleting by Ming


Edited by robert40 (log)

Robert R

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Second episode-

Was I the only one who heard the elevator version of Everybody Hurts during one of the segments?

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Second episode-

Was I the only one who heard the elevator version of Everybody Hurts during one of the segments?

No I heard the music as well.

Waaaah someone moved my pot! I would have thrown the 86 pan at his head.

I can see it now... a whole line of 86 cookware. It brings out the "loser in you"

Tarnation what tis dat thing I'm smellin thyme...what you mean thyme was dur a clock ur something?

Of course I did like the cocky line cook from NY getting dissed for her tough omelet. That was funny.

I would love to see the judges off camera. I bet it would be a scream to hear what they really think. " Did you see his face when I told him to finger the Banana?


Edited by handmc (log)

**************************************************

Ah, it's been way too long since I did a butt. - Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"

--------------------

One summers evening drunk to hell, I sat there nearly lifeless…Warren

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I would love to see the judges off camera. I bet it would be a scream to hear what they really think. " Did you see his face when I told him to finger the Banana?

"Finger the banana." It will live on as a one of the greatest lines of all time on PBS. I'm tempted to say that I would have a put a fist through it or smashed it with the 86 pan. Only to have the three judges tell me I just don't have what it takes. :laugh:

I think I'll keep watching the show. The finalists seem to be more qualified than the one's chosen for Hell's Kitchen. At least there is hope that the winner can actually perform the prize so to speak.

I'm with Robert on his predictions.

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I do know the show gets stronger with each successive one.

 

I think it will grow stronger as other chefs become a part of each episode.  So again--if you watch do so with an open mind.

As with a new restaurant opening, things do improve with time and experience .. to judge either by initial impressions is foolhardy ... if, as Michael says, it "gets stronger with each successive one", I am more than pleased to watch the entire series develop ... so I reserve judgement for later.

I tend to believe that it has potential .. and I have personally learned new things already, even if only how to "finger a banana" to prepare a proper dice, as Ming Tsai says ... :wink:


Melissa Goodman aka "Gifted Gourmet"

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