Two of my favorite hobbies are cooking and watching the television. Therefore, it is no surprise that in the evenings I enjoy watching programs on the ‘Food Network’ as it combines two of my passions. There is a great array of programs to watch on this network and here are some of my favourites.
I love cooking competitions and this is one with a difference. The four contestants must prepare a dish using a set of specific ingredients. These are unusual combinations that you wouldn’t usually put together. The judges then eat the dishes made before leaving just three contestants to compete in the main course/ entree round of the contest. Again, someone is eliminated until there are just two contestants remaining to fight it out in the dessert round. The winner takes home a big money prize.
Seven professional chefs compete in this televised cooking competition and it is currently one of my favourite shows on the Food Network. The chefs are given a specific theme or ingredient to use when preparing their dishes. The host then announces the winner of the challenge and names the chef who created the dishes he liked the least. The winner can choose one other competitor to battle it out with the losing chef in an extra challenge. The dishes these chefs then produce using the chosen ingredient is judged by the host and a guest judge. The chef who produces the best dish stays in the competition and the other goes home.
This is one of those programs that has you shouting a the screen in disbelief. Restaurant owners contact the Mystery Diners team when they have concerns about their business or particular members of staff. The team sets up cameras around the restaurant to watch the staff during a typical service in an attempt to identify the problem. They also have an undercover server under the pretense of them undergoing training and mystery diners who eat in the restaurants. During the show, there are many shocking moments when restaurant owners see their staff stealing, not doing their work, stealing their customers and many other appalling acts.
Restaurant Stakeout is a very similar type of show to Mystery Diners in the sense that there are hidden cameras to identify the problems in a business. However, the focus is much more on identifying problems so that restaurant owners can make changes than on filming shocking behaviour and sacking staff.
Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives
Also known as ‘Triple D’, this show features just one man on a mission to find the best places to eat in the United States. He visits a variety of venues across America that offer a wide range of cuisines. The owners of the establishment then prepare the host one or two of their specialties. This show gives me inspiration for new dishes, combinations, and flavours.