Author Topic: Celebrity Chefs and Bad Pizza  (Read 13251 times)

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Offline DWChun

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Re: Celebrity Chefs and Bad Pizza
« Reply #20 on: August 20, 2007, 08:49:32 PM »
I've finally seen the pizza episode of Jamie Oliver's and it was what I expected. I've yet to see a chef without a pizza making background make a pizza well. I'm not an expert by any means but from my time at the board, I'd put the pizzas made here up against any pizza that a celebrity chef would make.

The good thing about the "celebrity chef" is that they can bring more people into cooking. The bad thing is that their word is often taken as absolute truth. Learning to cook from celebrity chefs is like learning from Wikipedia in that you can get a lot of knowledge but some of it is questionable in its validity. Unfortunately, one does not have to be a chef, let alone a great chef to be a "celebrity chef". There are the exceptions like Gordon Ramsay who has Michelin Stars as "proof in the pudding" but aside from the F-Word, his other shows that I've seen involve him cooking little and yelling mostly.

Back to pizzas and celebrity chefs, I just find it sad that most approach pizza as cooked dough with stuff on top.


DW


Offline abatardi

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Re: Celebrity Chefs and Bad Pizza
« Reply #21 on: September 22, 2007, 11:17:45 PM »
I dunno if this was a new episode or not but Emeril was making pizza tonight.. it came on after Iron Chef and I was just about the change the channel when he said he was doing pizza... I kind of chuckled and said oh i have GOT to see this.... episode is still going on right now but so far the guy looks completely clueless as you would expect.  I swear he must have never seen a dough ball before this show - watching him try to shape it was *painful*

- aba
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Offline Bryan S

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Re: Celebrity Chefs and Bad Pizza
« Reply #22 on: September 22, 2007, 11:24:31 PM »
watching him try to shape it was *painful*

- aba
Yep! I really like the guy but after so many years of being the star and having all the behind the seens chefs do all the work, it's really painful watching him at all these days. Just goes to show while he might be the King on the food network he is quite rusty in the skills department these days. Success has it's price and it really shows with Emeril. What a shame.  :'(
Making great pizza and learning new things everyday.

Offline November

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Re: Celebrity Chefs and Bad Pizza
« Reply #23 on: September 22, 2007, 11:44:53 PM »
I watched this episode some time ago.  To give an example of how badly I thought Emeril was handling the content of the show, I should mention that I digitally record every pizza related show that comes on television for posterity and occasional reference, but after watching this episode I deleted the recording.  That's a hard thing for me to do too.  It's like asking The Library of Congress to burn a book in their archive because it's disagreeable.  It had to be done.  It was that bad.

- red.november

Offline abatardi

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Re: Celebrity Chefs and Bad Pizza
« Reply #24 on: September 22, 2007, 11:53:38 PM »
It's like asking The Library of Congress to burn a book in their archive because it's disagreeable.  It had to be done.  It was that bad.

- red.november

HAHAHA nice.  Later on in the show he took about a pound of dough and made probably an 11" skin out of it.  On top of this he put at least a pound of fresh mozz (maybe more) and about 1/2 - 3/4 lb or so of some other italian soft cheese followed by about 1/3 cup of olive oil.  All I was thinking was "oh this can't be good..." sure enough after the break he opens the oven and it is literally cheese soup overflowing onto the stone and burning while he is going on about how great it looks... hahaha

- aba
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Offline sourdough girl

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Re: Celebrity Chefs and Bad Pizza
« Reply #25 on: September 23, 2007, 12:33:39 PM »
aba and red.november,

This was the first time I had ever seen Emeril on TV and, to be honest, I was shocked.  A Chef with a live band??  And then, when the "pizzas" are done, he feeds THE BAND first, ignoring his live audience?  And yes, I had the same reaction when he was building the "white pizza"... and actually laughed out loud when he opened the oven door!  That poor virgin pizza stone, sacrificed to the cheese god!  Has Emeril never heard that "less is more"?

I've never studied the art of Chicago Deep Dish, but do you really use the same dough, fry up a whole bunch of stuff (including tomatoes) and just unceremoniously dump it on top of the crust??  I would guess not, but I'm not a famous Chef, so what do I know? 

Personally, I was turned off by his whole attitude and demeanor... he just didn't seem serious at all about making a real pizza!

However, I DID learn one thing last night:  I WON'T be watching Emeril again.  That in itself was a valuable lesson.

~sd
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Offline DWChun

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Re: Celebrity Chefs and Bad Pizza
« Reply #26 on: September 23, 2007, 12:54:11 PM »
One thing that I keep in mind when watching celebrity chefs is that they're celebrities first and chefs second, if at all. The fact of the matter is that they have their jobs because they were chosen for their perceived peformance ability on the camera, not their culinary skills. There are few celebrity chefs who are truly outstanding chefs. Those chefs who are world renowned and are at the top of their game are busy being chefs, not entertaining a live studio audience. A celebrity chef's business isn't truly teaching people how to cook well, it's making cooking approachable and less daunting to the average person who doesn't cook much. Let's face it, pizza is one of the most recognized foods we have right now and so every celebrity chef has at least 1 episode devoted to showing people how easy it is to make pizza in their home kitchen. While these pizzas look pretty bad to those who have experienced good pizza, the average person is likely experienced mainly with franchise pizzas so they don't know any better.

Yes, celebrity chefs make terrible pizza but when I think of all the cookbooks I've read through for pizza recipes, the majority of the recipes are no worse than what I've seen on TV. It's just not as pronounced since a book doesn't shout "BAM!!!" at me while I'm reading through it.


DW

Offline Repguy

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Re: Celebrity Chefs and Bad Pizza
« Reply #27 on: September 26, 2007, 03:45:13 PM »
One thing that I keep in mind when watching celebrity chefs is that they're celebrities first and chefs second, if at all. The fact of the matter is that they have their jobs because they were chosen for their perceived peformance ability on the camera, not their culinary skills. There are few celebrity chefs who are truly outstanding chefs. Those chefs who are world renowned and are at the top of their game are busy being chefs, not entertaining a live studio audience. A celebrity chef's business isn't truly teaching people how to cook well, it's making cooking approachable and less daunting to the average person who doesn't cook much. Let's face it, pizza is one of the most recognized foods we have right now and so every celebrity chef has at least 1 episode devoted to showing people how easy it is to make pizza in their home kitchen. While these pizzas look pretty bad to those who have experienced good pizza, the average person is likely experienced mainly with franchise pizzas so they don't know any better.

Yes, celebrity chefs make terrible pizza but when I think of all the cookbooks I've read through for pizza recipes, the majority of the recipes are no worse than what I've seen on TV. It's just not as pronounced since a book doesn't shout "BAM!!!" at me while I'm reading through it.


DW

So he Emeril was faking his skills at commanders palace all those years??

Offline pcampbell

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Re: Celebrity Chefs and Bad Pizza
« Reply #28 on: September 26, 2007, 04:23:26 PM »
How well do you think it would go over on a cooking show if they said: "ok, now just stick in the fridge for oh ... 72 or 96 hours"  :-D
Patrick

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Re: Celebrity Chefs and Bad Pizza
« Reply #29 on: September 26, 2007, 04:32:13 PM »
I personally think that Mario Batali is the real deal and the best chef of the lot on the Food Network from the standpoint of pure culinary skills. Bobby Flay is also good in that respect. Otherwise, I don't think that they could hold up to all to the really good chefs on the Iron Chef segments.

Peter


Offline sourdough girl

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Re: Celebrity Chefs and Bad Pizza
« Reply #30 on: September 26, 2007, 04:57:28 PM »
I really enjoy the Iron Chef segments and Bobby Flay, especially when he takes on a classic, decides to add an ingredient that's a no-no (mayo on a muffaletta comes to mind first) and then *gasp* LOSES the throwdown!  But my absolute favorite is poor Robert Irvine on Dinner Impossible because, as a former deli manager for many years, I have gone through much the same stress as he has when approached by the store manager or customer for LARGE, last-minute catering jobs ("I need sandwiches, fried chicken, fruit salad, deviled eggs...etc... for 300 people, and I need it this afternoon!")... and you never say "NO" to a customer!  I'm enjoying being a FORMER deli manager and watching Robert make lists, bark orders... and fret!  I always smiled and said "no problem!" but in my mind, I was thinking "Poor planning on YOUR part does not constitute an EMERGENCY on my part!"   >:D

There are good and great celebrity chefs on the Food Network and maybe Emeril has earned his cred, but IMHO, based on the pizza segment, I won't be watching him anymore.  Oh, and did I mention that distracting, irritating towel that kept falling off his shoulder REPEATEDLY?  In the State of Washington, a towel on your shoulder is a health dept violation.

~sd




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Offline DWChun

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Re: Celebrity Chefs and Bad Pizza
« Reply #31 on: September 26, 2007, 10:24:01 PM »
So he Emeril was faking his skills at commanders palace all those years??

I don't know if he was faking but I do know that the world is full of good chefs who get good reviews yet the great ones like Thomas Keller are not making their living by being a TV personality.

You have the rare celebrity chefs like Gordon Ramsay and Heston Blumenthal who have exceptional accomplishments as chefs but what other currently active celebrity chef has such credentials?

I enjoy celebrity chefs as much as anyone else but most seem to have questionable culinary skills.


DW

Offline Bryan S

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Re: Celebrity Chefs and Bad Pizza
« Reply #32 on: September 26, 2007, 10:39:11 PM »
Well nobody gave AB credit for his pizza on Good Eats. Saw it again yesterday, been awhile. He does the whole cold ferment very little topping and It comes out looking real nice. Link http://www.foodnetwork.com/food/show_ea/episode/0,1976,FOOD_9956_19117,00.html And yes I'm a huge AB fan.  ;D
Making great pizza and learning new things everyday.

Offline sourdough girl

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Re: Celebrity Chefs and Bad Pizza
« Reply #33 on: September 26, 2007, 10:51:19 PM »
I really like Alton Brown too... and sorry I missed the episode... wonder if any of them are on Netflix yet??

Hey, anybody remember one of the original celebrity chefs....   The Galloping Gourmet, Graham Kerr?  I used to run to the TV after school to watch him cook SOMETHING (no clue what after all these years!) and get SLOSHED on camera!  He and his wife Treena live in my neck of the woods, have sobered up  :o   :angel:  and are now teaching classes on HEALTHY eating and living.  He was sure fun to watch in the old days!  >:D  HE's probably one that Gordon Ramsey would have loved to get his hands on (too bad he was in short pants when Kerr was on the tube!)

~sd

edit:  Just checked Netflix... Feasting on Asphalt is there, but not Good Eats... yet...
« Last Edit: September 26, 2007, 10:53:27 PM by sourdough girl »
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Offline Bryan S

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Re: Celebrity Chefs and Bad Pizza
« Reply #34 on: September 26, 2007, 11:11:54 PM »

Hey, anybody remember one of the original celebrity chefs....   The Galloping Gourmet, Graham Kerr?  I used to run to the TV after school to watch him cook SOMETHING (no clue what after all these years!) and get SLOSHED on camera! 
SD Girl, We must be the same age cause, Me Too!  ;D Yeah he was notorious for adding like lbs of butter at a time into his dishes. His wife ran into health problems so that's what prompted the Healty cooking. I loved his suits.  ::) He was a hoot!  8)
Making great pizza and learning new things everyday.

Offline November

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Re: Celebrity Chefs and Bad Pizza
« Reply #35 on: September 26, 2007, 11:12:58 PM »
Alton Brown isn't a chef, and you'll rarely see him try anything live.  He and his staff concentrate more on the research and visual aids than the dramatic flare.  Witness the difference in popularity between Emeril's two shows.  It's his live show that makes the primetime lineup.  I submit this as evidence of what makes him who he is today: an antic driven celebrity, because he knows dramatic flare is his strength and will get him further than his culinary skill.

An anomaly among pizza making celebrity chefs would be Wolfgang Puck.  I noticed that ever since his last appearance on the original Iron Chef America pilot series, his activity on the Food Network has waned.  Apparently his style is too dry for network executives, but cooking and baking he can do.

- red.november

Offline Bryan S

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Re: Celebrity Chefs and Bad Pizza
« Reply #36 on: September 26, 2007, 11:19:48 PM »
Alton Brown isn't a chef, and you'll rarely see him try anything live.  He and his staff concentrate more on the research and visual aids than the dramatic flare.

- red.november
Sorry but I have to ask Red, Do you like him?  :-\
Making great pizza and learning new things everyday.

Offline November

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Re: Celebrity Chefs and Bad Pizza
« Reply #37 on: September 26, 2007, 11:20:23 PM »
Hey, anybody remember one of the original celebrity chefs....   The Galloping Gourmet, Graham Kerr?

edit:  Just checked Netflix... Feasting on Asphalt is there, but not Good Eats... yet...

I used to watch the "Galloping Gourmet" too.  Although my favorite cooking personality was Martin Yan of "Yan Can Cook", who incidentally has been a judge on Iron Chef America at least once.

I have every episode of "Feasting on Asphalt" from both seasons on my digital video server.  That is some of Alton's best work.

- red.november

Offline November

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Re: Celebrity Chefs and Bad Pizza
« Reply #38 on: September 26, 2007, 11:21:57 PM »

Offline Bryan S

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Re: Celebrity Chefs and Bad Pizza
« Reply #39 on: September 26, 2007, 11:27:24 PM »

I have every episode of "Feasting on Asphalt" from both seasons on my digital video server.  That is some of Alton's best work.

- red.november
I absolutely love that series along with his Good Eats shows. Robert Irvine/Dinner Impossible, and Throw Down with Bobby Flay, they are my top 3 on foodnetwork.
Making great pizza and learning new things everyday.


 

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