I love Food Network. It’s sad how much I love it. Okay, I will admit that I haven’t been watching it as much as I used to (I opt out of a number of the cooking shows when I don’t like the chef or the recipe), but there are still quite a few shows that I never want to miss. If you’re looking for something cooking based, this list is for you! These shows are the best that Food Network has to offer, in terms of programming.
On the surface, Cutthroat Kitchen is a gameshow for sociopaths. In order to win, you have to be able to cook, be good with money, and know where to place your sabotages. That’s right. Sabotages. Host Alton Brown tells contestants what to cook. For instance, he might have them make Chicken Fried Steak. The contestants receive 60 seconds to shop. They can get anything they need (or think they need) as long as it’s in that time frame. After that, it’s auction time. Each contestant has $25,000. They bid on sabotages for things that relate to the cooking they will be doing. In a Chicken Fried Steak scenario, one might bid to take away someone’s chicken and replace it with Chicken in a Can. The chef that wins gets to give it to one of the other chefs. They have to be good with their money though because if they run out in the final round they will be screwed. The remaining money they have leftover, if they win, is their prize money, too. So, it pays to be able to cook well and be frugal if you’re a chef in Cutthroat Kitchen.
DINERS, DRIVE-INS, AND DIVES:
Guy Fieri has been doing DDD for quite a few years now. The purpose of the show is for viewers to inform Guy about the little hole in the wall that is making food the way it should be made. When enough recommendations come in for a place, Guy goes and films a segment with the chef where they make a couple of their best dishes and Guy gets to try them out. It’s cool because he goes all over North America. He’s been to Canada a few times and nearly every state in the U.S. Each show consists of three or four restaurants that usually come with some sort of theme. In any case, it gives you plenty to consider when you’re going on vacation. There are DDD obsessed fans that actually map out these restaurants and follow Guy’s trail to experience good eats. While I haven’t done this, I do admit when I visit a new city, I look to see if any of these restaurants are there.
IRON CHEF AMERICA:
Iron Chef America made the list for a couple of reasons. It’s fun to watch anyone try to prepare four or five full dishes in the course of one hour. It also gives you some interesting ideas of things you can do with whatever the secret ingredient is. The chefs are always entertaining and no matter who wins it’s a good time. If you watch the Cooking Channel, they air the original Iron Chef competitions sometimes and those are always a hoot, as well. In the original competition the judges are mainly psychics and television stars with no real food knowledge so the comments are always hilarious. It’s worth checking out.
The Kitchen has not been on that long, but it’s already become one of my favorite shows on Food Network. Set in talk show style, each episode offers a few recipes, a cocktail, some kitchen tips, and good conversation. The hosts Sunny Anderson, Katie Lee, Jeff Mauro, Marcela Valladolid and Geoffrey Zakarian are mainly people that I am familiar with from the Network, though I will admit that I started watching just out of my love for Geoffrey Zakarian. I keep watching, not just for him, but because I love the dynamic between the hosts and I like the tips they offer. The “Into and Over” segments at the end of the show are always fun, too.
This is hands down my favorite show on Food Network. I love to see how serious the chefs are. I love rooting for my favorites. Sometimes, I really love the judges. My favorite panel is always Scott, Geoffrey, and Alex (I really enjoy any of this paring with Chris, as well). It’s fun seeing how easily some chefs can design food porn, while others always end up with food disasters. It doesn’t matter how many times I have seen an episode, I can always watch it another time.
GUY’s GROCERY GAMES:
I am beginning to think host Guy Fieri loves shows with three words that start with the same letter. First, Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives and now Guy’s Grocery Games. This game show gives one lucky contestant a chance to win $20,000. They just have to beat three other chefs and then run through a grocery store looking for ten items worth $2,000 a piece. Sounds easy enough, right? It might be if chefs didn’t have to shop and cook in the same grocery story with games like Bag Swap (chefs end up with competitors foods), No Carts Allowed (you can cook what you can carry), or Frozen Food Feud (a gourmet meal made with only frozen foods). These chefs end up working for that money and watching it is fun, entertaining, and at times educational.
What’s your favorite Food Network show?
[tags]Food Network, Television Shows, Guy’s Grocery Games, Diners Drive-ins and Dives, Iron Chef, The Kitchen, Cutthroat Kitchen, Chopped[/tags/