Tag Archives: Food Network

Flashback Friday: The Best Thing I Ever Ate (2009-Present)

A good meal is more than the components that make up the dish. It is an experience to savor and treasure.

The Best Thing I Ever Ate has been part of the Food Network schedule since 2009. The show takes viewers across the country as the network’s stars talk about a favorite restaurant and a specific meal that makes their mouth water.

I’m not a foodie by an stretch of the imagination. But I will admit that some of the dishes look so good that it makes me want to buy a plane or bus ticket to try it.

Do I recommend it? Yes.

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Flashback Friday: Food Paradise (2007-2018)

A good meal is more than physical nourishment. It is a pleasurable experience that lingers in our memories long after the meal is done. Especially when we are on vacation and eating something that we normally would not eat at home.

Food Paradise aired on both Travel Channel and then on Food Network from 2007-2018. Each episode focuses on a different type of food, introducing the audience to mouth watering dishes from different restaurants across the country.

I’m not a foodie, but my mouth frequently drops when I watch this program. The dishes presented to the audience are nothing short of amazing. Depending on one’s food tastes, one might be tempted to take a trip to wherever the restaurant is located to try the dish they saw on television.

I recommend it.

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Flashback Friday-Ace of Cakes (2006-2011)

When one normally thinks of a cake, the image is that of a square or a rectangle covered in frosting with a topping or two.

On Ace of Cakes, Duff Goldman and his team create much more than the basic cake. Their task is to create custom and extremely detailed cakes within a very short amount of time. Once the cakes are completed (sometimes using unorthodox methods), they often travel hundreds, if not thousands of miles to their final destination.

I think this show is fabulous. I love the idea of the challenge of creating cakes that go well beyond what most of us think of a cake. I also love to camaraderie between the team and the creativity it takes to put together their masterpeices.

I recommend it.

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Flashback Friday-The Great Food Truck Race (2010-Present)

Innovation comes in many different forms. When it comes to food, food trucks represent innovation in it’s purest form.

The Great Food Truck Race has aired in Food Network since 2010. Hosted by Tyler Florence, the show follows several food truck teams as they drive across the country and try to out cook each other. As in any competition reality program, the winning team receives a cash prize and the glory of winning their season.

I can understand the appeal of The Great Food Truck Race. Any television program, regardless of genre or content does not last ten years without having a loyal and eager fan base. While this is not my favorite show on the Food Network, I can understand its appeal.

Do I recommend it? Maybe.

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Flashback Friday-Kids Baking Championship (2015-Present)

Excellence in a specific area in adulthood requires years of hard work and study. Excellence in this same area as a child is something to cherish.

Kids Baking Championship has aired on Food Network since 2015. Hosted and judged by Duff Goldman and Valerie Bertinelli, this competition reality show puts its young contestants through their paces. Judged on their dishes based on presentation, taste, and quality, at the end of the season, one contestant is named the winner.

I don’t watch this show very often, but when I do, I am impressed. The level of skill, passion, and talent that these kids have is impressive. I also appreciate that because of the age of the contestants, there is a gentler approach to the competition.

Do I recommend it? Yes.

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Flashback Friday-Chopped Grill Masters (2012-Present)

For many people, nothing say summer like cooking via the grill. That of course, leads to another off shoot of the Food Network show Chopped.

Chopped Grill Masters premiered in 2012. The premise and format of this program is similar to that of it’s predecessor. The only difference is that the contestants are all professional grillers and it is held outside as a posed to be filmed in a kitchen with professional chefs.

I like this show, as I do all of the various incarnations of Chopped. While it is a reality show in the strictest sense of the word, it’s fascinating to watch. The competition by itself is enough to keep the viewer hooked, but the process of watching these pros create a meal is the icing on the cake for me.

I recommend it.

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Throwback Thursday-Chopped Junior (2016-Present)

When it comes to certain professions, it takes years of hard work, grit and mistakes before one can call themselves a master of their craft.

The adults who compete on Chopped have years of experience in the kitchen. The children who compete on Chopped Junior may not have same amount of years in the kitchen. But they have the same drive, passion and want to succeed.

The premise of Chopped Junior is the same as it’s adult predecessor. Also hosted by Ted Allen, four young chefs must make three distinct meals within a short amount of time. One by one, the contestants are eliminated until one is named the winner and earns $10,000.

What I like about Chopped Junior is that even though the pressure is the same as it is for the adults, the kids are willing to help their fellow contestant. It shows, at least from my opinion, not only how talented and driven these kids are, but how open helping one another succeed.

I recommend it.

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Throwback Thursday-The Pioneer Woman (2011-Present)

Cooking shows have been around for decades. But it takes a special TV chef to inspire his or her viewers.

The Pioneer Woman has aired on The Food Network since 2011. Hosted by Ree Drummond, the show is set in her kitchen and family ranch in Oklahoma. Drummond takes the viewer through the process of making various meals and introduces them to the ranching life that her family lives.

I’m not usually one who watches cooking shows. I usually watch them when I am home sick or spending a lazy weekend doing nothing but watching television. But, I do like The Pioneer Woman. She is warm, she is open and her recipes look tasty.

I recommend it.

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Throwback Thursday-Mystery Diners (2012-2016)

When the cats away, the mice play. The same could be said for employees who act one way in front of their bosses and another way when the boss is not around.

Mystery Diners aired on Food Network from 2012-2016. The premise of the show was as follows: A restaurant owner was suspicious that something was going at his restaurant, but he couldn’t quite figure out what the problem was. Enter Charles Stiles and his team. The restaurant is rigged with hidden cameras. As Charles and the restaurant owner watch from a hidden control room, mystery diners are sent in as customers or new staff to get the lowdown from the unsuspecting employees. When there is enough proof, the cover is revealed and the owner of the restaurant makes a decision on what to do about the offending staff.

This is a typical reality show. But unlike other reality shows, there was a disclaimer at the end of the credits. From my perspective, even if it was not 100% “reality”, I still enjoyed it. The element of surprise, for both the audience and the restaurant owner was enough to keep me coming back for further episodes.

I recommend it.

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Flashback Friday-Restaurant Stakeout (2012-2014)

The success of a company depends not just on those at the top, but those on the bottom.

Restaurant Stakeout aired on the Food Network from 2012-2014. The premise of the show is as follows: restaurant owners suspect that something that is not on the up and up within their restaurant. Famed NYC restaurateur Willie Degel assists the owners by recording and observing staff via hidden cameras. Using the evidence gathered, Willie is able to assist the owner by identifying and correcting the issues that are plaguing the restaurant.

I like Restaurant Stakeout. I like it because unlike other shows that fall into the sub-genre of “restaurant based reality shows”, the focus is solely on the service that the diners receive. The truth of eating out is that the meal may be the most delicious meal you have ever had, but if the service is not up to snuff, it is unlikely that you will come back for another meal.

I recommend it.

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