Food Network Junkie

I admit to having a little bit of a Food Network obsession. I don’t watch much TV, and most of the TV I do watch is typically mutually agreed upon recorded programs I watch with my husband. When he’s not home and I feel like watching, I invariably turn to the Food Network. And, really, I could sit there and watch just about any of those shows, because despite my MIL’s reason for not watching (she can already cook), I feel like I learn a little something with almost every show I watch (even though, no matter what she’ll tell you, I can cook too). Whether it’s not to wash mushrooms and raspberries or the fact that cold butter is the key to flaky pastry.

Of course I have my favorites, and these change with my moods. If I’m in the mood for fantasy, I go for Barefoot Contessa. If I’m feeling competitive, Iron Chef is perfect, and if I’m feeling a bit cosmopolitan, I love to watch Diners, Drive-ins, & Dives. Its appeal is actually two-fold, as they highlight unique and excellent restaurants around the U.S. and they get the chefs to give quick tutorials on how to make a couple of the restaurant’s specialty items.

I’d been trying to keep track of some of these spots, in the event that I ever visited the city in question, but I’m getting overloaded with must-visits. So, I’m thinking of dedicating one of my many currently blank journals to future culinary vacation spots and roadtrip stops. I do occasionally get the urge to try out one of the featured recipes myself (after cutting a couple ingredients, substituting a few more, simplifying and generally trying to cut fat and calories), so it’s a win-win, even if the final product only vaguely resembles its inspiration.

A new favorite is The Best Thing I Ever Ate, where celebrity chefs and restaurant owners highlight their favorite foods in a given category. On Friday’s episode, one of the guys’ favorite snacks was a particular pickle, so they did a little piece on this homemade pickle company…and I think, just maybe, I can adjust my own delicious pickle recipe (a la Emeril) to make it a little easier. Awesome!

I will tell you that I’m sort a cooking celebrity in my house too. For years, while my boys were eating lunch or dinner, I’d stand at the kitchen island cooking and pretend I was doing a cooking show–my mom even made me a stand-up sign. The boys loved being ‘audience members’ and insisted on seeing into the bowl after ever step. I really could have used one of those overhead mirrors hanging from the ceiling in my kitchen… Maybe someday.

Posted in cooking, food network on 02/07/2010 09:13 pm


  1. Green Girl in Wisconsin

    I adore the Food Network too–Esp. Triple D (Doug and I are planning a road trip based on where Guy eats) and Good Eats for the science. I always learn something, too, and I hate to cook!

  2. Maybe I should try the Foot Network. I do like reading recipe books…

  3. Alyssa Goodnight

    Your typo cracked me up, Barrie! Although…maybe there is a Foot Network and I just don't know about it.

  4. There is something about food shows that is so comforting. Just watching the meals being prepared is mesmerizing when in the hands of the pros. Maybe b/c I'm not too much of a cook, so it gives me a chance to dream!

  5. David Cranmer

    It may be a quiet kept secret but most men I know love the Food Network.

    My wife got me hooked on Diners, Drive-ins, & Dives and the next food network star. Top entertainment.

  6. We get the Japanese version of the iron chef here.
    Comedy and how to cook the thing you are never going to cook all rolled in one!

  7. Angie and Brian

    I'll be a celebrity guest for you. And, I'll get Brian to stand on a ladder behind you with a big mirror!

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