Justin and I loooove cooking shows. We love cooking, ourselves, and have hopes and dreams involved with the culinary arts. We’ve also worked our teenage, and early college years, in food service. So, we feel pretty confident, as amateur home cooks who have never gone to culinary school, when it comes to cooking shows. So, today, we thought we’d talk about our favorite Food Network shows.
This is a Gordon Ramsey show. Ramsey goes to restaurants (not chain ones) that are falling apart and failing. We discovers what they are doing wrong, and helps them fix it. He recreates menus for them, redesigns their restaurant, and remotivates them. There is a lot of yelling and cursing, especially from Ramsey, but I can completely understand–he is so frustrated that people who should know the ins and outs of owning and working a restaurant don’t. I mean, I find myself shaking my head in frustration as well. But, under the hard core, Ramsey really is a softie and cares deeply for the people and wants to see them succeed.
We love this show! Homecooks compete to be the best and have the opportunity to make their own cookbook. They are given mystery box challenges, in which they receive a mystery ingredient to base a dish around, and team challenges. Gordon Ramsey, Graham Elliot, and Christina Tosi judge each dish and decides who is eliminated each week. I love seeing all the beautifully plated dishes they come up with!
Same basis as MasterChef, but for kids 8-12. It is absolutely astounding to see what these young kids can make! The judges are a little more lenient (meaning they are nicer and calmer), but still expect the same high standards as the adults. But, the kids also have fun competitions which typically end with some sort of food product being poured onto the judges.
Four chefs compete against each other in three rounds: appetizer, entree, desert. Each round, a chef is eliminated. For each round, they are given a mystery basket with four random ingredients, which they have to use and repurpose in their dish. They are judged by three famous chefs, but the judges differ per episode. It is so interesting to see what the random ingredients are, and Justin and I love to pause it when they reveal the basket and think of what we would do in that round. We like seeing the innovation of the ingredients, and it makes us feel good when what we imagine is close to what they create.
Four chefs compete against each other in three rounds. They are each given $25,00 at the beginning. But, with each round, the host gives them what he expects (French Toast, soup, Hamburger and Fries, Poached Egg, etc) and they are given only 60 seconds to grab their ingredients. If they don’t make it in time, the host takes away an ingredient. Then, the host gives all sorts of “sabotages” for the chefs to use their $25,000 to auction off. Some of these sabotages include a chef not being able to use heat to cook, or switching out their fresh ingredient for a processed one, or having to peel 10 pounds of potatoes before being anything else to do, etc. The judge differs every episode, and he doesn’t know or care about the sabotages, just judges solely based on taste and presentation. Each round, a chef is eliminated. The chef who wins, takes home whatever amount of money they have left. Justin really likes this show because it includes a lot of strategy and he likes seeing how those who have sabotages work through them.
The Great Food Truck Race
This is a fun show for us since Justin and I love foodtrucks! We go to food truck round ups at least twice a month. This is a competition between different groups of burgeoning food trucks, and each round, they are given a different city and a different challenge to compete in. At the end of each episode, the food truck with the least amount of profit is eliminated. What we love about this is that the show also focuses on preparing and teaching these groups how to run a successful foodtruck (which Justin and I would love to do one day).