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David T. Cole

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A married mother of three is the contestant in the series premiere of this reality-competition show in which amateur cooks prepare their signature dishes in culinary battles against professional chefs. Adam Richman hosts. Appearing: Lorena Garcia.

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While sad to learn about that incident, I enjoyed Adam as host and challenge taker on his previous shows. If he realizes we're here for the cooks and the food, primarily, then I could continue to enjoy him on my tv. Also, if the show isn't an ad for Wal*Mart meats.

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Kent Rollins will be on 2 episodes, he is a friend of mine and a darn good chef. He was on the outdoor grilling episode of Chopped, and Amanda cried when he didn't win. He said he'll be on episodes 3 and 7.

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Unless the tasting is blind (as The Taste was), voting is going to be as much on personality as food. I'll give it a shot -- I like Cora and Duff.

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I didn't like Elisha, but I'll give the show another shot. I like watching the pros cook.

Any person who says "I cook for THE toughest critics around - my kids" just make my eyes roll. 

 

They totally gave it away that she was going to beat Michelle in the 3rd round by going to the
commercial and showing Marcel as next up and her freaking out over using a pressure cooker. 
Idiots.  I have a bad feeling this show is going to let every home cook win at least 3 rounds,
and most probably winning 4 or all 5.

 

Stewed chicken is not supposed to have crispy skin, it's STEWED.  It's soft and has gravy. The
dinner party was right with that one.  But, I call shenanigans on the burned salmon.  What morons.

 

I love Marcel. He's always been one of my faves, though I know he annoys a lot of people.  *LOL*

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I can't see this show lasting. Having average Joes as judges means that they will probably have less sophisticated palates and they will also be able to guess who the home cook is and will vote for him/her to win the money. Pro judges could also guess but would be more likely to identify the superior dish.

I know I was supposed to be rooting for Elisha, but the pro dishes all looked better to me with the exception of the tart. The home cook also gets to pre make some things the pro can't so that tips it in her favor as well.

I also wasn't sure why she grew up in a tin shed, but it shouldn't matter in the result.

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Oh good lord this is an awful show.  They're playing the Who Wants to be a Millionaire rounds? Plus the Chopped sad stories - my baby never went to Guam whaaaa?  I paid little further attention after it was clear Alicia would win the second round.  Otherwise what, someone else would step in like WWTBAM?  I'm not a huge fan of Cat Cora either, she is so sold out. Why would any chef appear when it's already scripted they will be beaten?  And the heavy Sofia Vergara accent that magically disappeared in her talking heads, especially at the end.  She could at least have looked slightly surprised when she kept winning. I might just plan to do dishes every week when this show is on and I wasn't expecting much.

Edited by QuelleC
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Yawn.  One more "Rush around the kitchen, have a crisis" food contest.  Will producers EVER figure out that real foodies want more detail about the dishes.  Spend a little time with the cooking, so we can get inspired.  Spend a little more time with the critiques for maybe a bit of learning what NOT to do.

I guess it sells, but the network that gets back to interesting stand & stir, learn a bit about technique will eventually be the winner.  I hope.

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 This is the worst cooking competition show I've ever seen.  And I've watched Rewrapped and Sugar Dome on Food Network so that's saying something.  

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The salmon was burnt. She burned the salmon. Salmon=toast. What? Third-tier TV cooks get paid to play. Richman throws a bunch of old game show lines around. The best part of this being on NBC is no constant replays.

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That  was just so... not good. I didn't like Elisha at all. Anyone remember where she grew up? Oh yeah, Guam. Was it necessary to include that in nearly every one of her Talking Heads? I couldn't believe that she was crying after she lost the stewed chicken round to Marcel and then pouting about it in her Talking Head. Grow up - Don't come on a show like this if you can't put on your big girl pants and handle losing a round or two (to professional chefs!). At least she got to keep the money she had earned up to that point (she made sure we all knew she could take her family to Guam after she won the third round which was really what her goal was) and she got to continue on.

 

Having average Joes as judges means that they will probably have less sophisticated palates and they will also be able to guess who the home cook is and will vote for him/her to win the money. Pro judges could also guess but would be more likely to identify the superior dish.

I had the same thought. I think I would definitely prefer people in the food world so that we would get a better, more informed critique.

 

I also noticed that all of her ingredients seemed prepped. She had very little chopping to do as most of that was already done and she was just adding things in from plastic containers - yet she still managed to cut her finger at some point. I do feel that, as leighdear mentioned above, the home cooks will likely win the majority of the rounds with many of them winning all 5. I think the show is set up that way since if they just came out and got smoked by the professional chefs constantly they probably feel that wouldn't make for good TV. Though I'm not sure what they could do to make this show good TV at this point.

 

I'm not sure I can keep watching this one. I would normally try to tune in at least when I knew one of my favorite chefs would be on but they are featured so little and hardly any time is spent on the cooking and the critique afterwards that it just seems kind of pointless especially since it seems they are making it so that the home cooks win more often than not, especially with so little critique to go by.

Edited by Rapunzel

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QuelleC that wasn't Cat Cora; that was Lorena Garcia. Since she is Venezuelan I'd say her accent is legit.

I thought the rules were basically you cooked all 5 times and kept all the money you won?

Guam and my nana. That must have been 25% of Elisha's vocabulary. Boring.

And regular people judges? Ridiculous. I want professionals.

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mertensia, you're right. One person plays all five rounds every week.

 

I thoguht this was pretty bad...and I watch "Guy's Grocery Games".

 

It's just like every other game show NBC has done this century (except perhaps 1 vs. 100)... lots of flash and almost zero substance. We didn't see much cooking, we didn't get the thought process of the judges. (Or any qualifications as to the quality of their palates - burned salmon wins?! - or, really, any qualifications of the guest chefs beyond those who live on TV.)  The show was overly fond of its own mechanics. I like Adam Richman, but he's not gonna be able to make the show good.

Edited by lambertman

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QuelleC that wasn't Cat Cora; that was Lorena Garcia. Since she is Venezuelan I'd say her accent is legit.

I checked out the NBC home page for this show and gosh do Cat and Lorena look alike in those particular pics. 

 

I was referring to Elisha's on and off accent.

 

As if there was not enough to dislike about this show, the huge stage set that turned me off immediately. It made me long for the simplicity of Ready Set Cook which was the first cooking competition show I watched in the 90's.  I mean, it was very low budget, the set was tiny, but you could actually watch them cook.  I saw nothing last night but a lot of neon lights. 

Edited by QuelleC

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Aside from Fox and the Gordon Ramsay shows, it seems that the major networks really can't do good cooking competition shows. Too bad.

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This was terrible.  There is absolutely no suspense since the home cook goes on to compete even if she loses--which apparently, will not happen very often.  I did enjoy Marcel's segment and want his coconut rice ASAP.  Got really tired of home-cook's weepy face at letting down her "Nana's" stewed chicken recipe.

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Even though I didn't care for Elisha, I somehow think that the judges of "Food Network Star" would give her tongue baths and anoint her their next queen.  The stories, the Nana, the Guam-inspired theme?  All add up to "STAH".

 

Did she go on the wrong show by accident?  Because I think she could jump onto FNS right now & take the whole thing....*LOL*

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I didn't like Elisha, but I'll give the show another shot. I like watching the pros cook.

Any person who says "I cook for THE toughest critics around - my kids" just make my eyes roll.

 

I thought the same.  There's a big difference between fussy kids and critics.  I didn't care for Elisha either and, like everyone else, I got very sick of hearing about Guam after the second time she mentioned it.  Somehow, the fact that her 4 or 5 y/o son hasn't yet been to Guam didn't strike me as tragic.

 

I love Marcel.  I was glad he won his segment.

 

Who were those people making the decisions?  If any of them had the credentials to be food critics, I missed the announcement.  

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I'll look forward to seeing Kent again.  I'm also looking forward to seeing Jet Tila cook.  I had never heard of him before he turned up as a judge on Cutthroat Kitchen but I like him a lot.  He has a good sense of humor.

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I only stumbled onto this about half way through the episode, so didn't know how the first rounds went.  I saw the Marcel round and thought his was so superior-and at the same time was confused as to why Elisha seemed resentful because, you know, professional chef.  But then, the final round.  Lorena Garcia is not my favorite, but I enjoyed her during this segment.  But, the greater shock was that burnt salmon won!  I just can't.... In my mind, it doesn't matter if the judges are chefs or non chefs as...burnt salmon!  I know a lot of celebrity chefs want to be on t.v., but I can't imagine any of them signing up for this show when it seems stacked against the chefs.  Just...no.

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I liked it.  Having a blind tasting was a very major plus, in my opinion -- judge the food, not the person.  I wouldn't mind knowing the background of the judges, and I'd prefer if they switched up the order of the dishes -- Elisha's were first in every round.

 

The banter was 1000 times better than MasterChef -- that was another plus.  It's on our DVR now.

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I understand this was only the first episode, and they need to iron out the flow, so I will give them a pass on things like forced trash talking from the professionals and Adam getting a feel for how to run the show.

 

What I don't know yet is whether or not the competition portion of the show will ever pull me in. It is possible I will find contestants interesting enough to root for them. It wasn't the case in this episode, but I guess I'll roll with it for now.  If they keep the format this way, I think what I'll need to see is a home cook get smoked and lose 4 out of 5, just to make sure that it could happen.

 

But here's the deal:  The single home cook running through the whole progression in a single episode is probably not going to work for me. For a show like this, I really need to become attached, either positively or negatively, to the home cook.  By far the best way to do that is to give me a couple of weeks to get to know the contestants and develop a love/hate of them.

 

If it weren't already water under the bridge, I would immediately change up the format of the show to make it five to one ratio of contestants to professional chefs each week with a five week planned run. 

 

Week 1: Total prize money $15,000. Losers get $0, winners divide up the $15,000.

Week 2: Total prize money $35,000.

Week 3: Total prize money $50,000.

Week 4: Total prize money $75,000.

Week 5: Total prize money $100,000.

 

Total prizes to be handed out over the 5 weeks = $275,000. 

 

What you get out of this format is a chance to grow attached to the reality show contestants, which is pretty much what you need to make any reality show work. You also get to learn about the professionals, since you will get to see them cook five different dishes during an episode. In my opinion, this would make it far more interesting, as we could make the comparison between a home cook who knows that one thing and the professional who should bang out at least 4 and probably all 5 worthy challenges in many different styles all in the same episode.

Edited by JTMacc99

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If it weren't already water under the bridge, I would immediately change up the format of the show to make it five to one ratio of contestants to professional chefs each week with a five week planned run.

I already watch a show like that: MasterChef.

 

Maybe I'm overloaded on reality shows, but I thought this was just the right amount of "home cook".  If there was too much "Guam Guam Guam" in this episode, imagine hearing it (or the equivalent) every week!

 

This felt a little more like Iron Chef than anything, except for the blind tasting, which I think is critical.  Not to say that there isn't producer interference -- every vote before the break will be 2-2, changing a 4-1 decision by having 1 o the 4 change their vote.

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I don't care to get to know the contestants or learn cooking tips so ... win for me! I liked seeing small potato chefs or home cooks  throw Bobby Flay down, and I'm okay with it here, too. This show was filmed more than a year ago and the first episode didn't get good ratings, so doubtful it will get another go.

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Are you kidding me??  They gave it away before the commercial YET AGAIN!  Do they think we are idiots??

 

I thought for sure the cookie guy won by the remarks and I was thoroughly surprised when he said Keana.

 

I'm calling bull on this show.

 

Edited to add:  I liked Kena better than last week's too, susannot

Edited by NYGirl

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I liked Kena a lot better than last week's Elisha,but still, this show has no credibility.  I wonder what the pro chefs are paid to go on this show and lose to a home chef.

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I love cooking competitions but will not be watching this. I did like Kena and I liked the blind tasting but they gave away who won on each round before it was announced. They should either announce the winner before the commercial or not show that the contestant goes on to cook the next round. Ridiculous!

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I have to agree, the editors should be shown the door. But I'm glad she won the money, she obviously needs a fresh start. Good luck to her.

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the contestants will go on and cook each round regardless if they win the round or not. They get to keep the money they win each round.They do need to switch up the order of what the dinner guest taste alternate between whose plate goes first. Anyway, I watch too many of these shows. I also recoginize one of the "regular" dinner guests as a contestant on Syfy's Opposite Worlds.

Edited by calvinshobbes
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I think the first home chef win should be $5K regardless if it's not the first battle. The 2nd =$10K etc...  If the home chef "only" won the last four rounds they'd "only" get $60K.  So let it be done!

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The professionals are working under a severe disadvantage since they have to be able to cook anything and everything with zero foreknowledge or practice time, so I can see why they lose so much. The home cooks have been perfecting their recipes for years and also get to target their menu items. It seems like they're guaranteed at least one win with their desserts since a lot of pros sniff down their noses at sweets.

 

The judging panel can probably guess sometimes which dishes are which just by the presentation, but I don't mind if they give a close call to the home cook. Seeing the underdog come out on top is part of the fun for me as a viewer.

 

It's nice to see that the pros have all been gracious in defeat -- it's the thing that finally humanized Bobby Flay for me.

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I'm just glad Stefan lost. He's such a tool. Does anyone know where his 8 restaurants are around the world? Because the one he always bragged about in Santa Monica is closed.

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I swear if the home chef had said "life changing" one more freakin time I was going to lose it. This show is so bizarre. I keep asking myself every week, as with Rising Star, why I'm still watching it, but it's like a trainwreck and I can't look away.

 

I found it odd, maybe it's just me, two weeks in a row one of the home chefs' dishes was an egg roll or spring roll. I'm a fairly decent cook and made them one time in my life and said never again because of the time and amount of work involved. I know a lot of really good home cooks and none of them have egg rolls or spring rolls in their repertoire but I guess if based on geography/ethnicity, that's what your mom or grandmom cooked and taught you how to cook, then it becomes a common and easy dish for you to make. I wish I had that background because I love them but would never go through all that trouble again! And I wish I could have tasted the last dish because even though she lost, I thought Cat Cora's pork dish looked amazing.

Edited by parrotlover

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I found it odd, maybe it's just me, two weeks in a row one of the home chefs' dishes was an egg roll or spring roll.

 

It's not just you. I'm wondering if they put that in the lineup, after practicing a LOT, in order to trip up the pros. I can only imagine cowboy Kent Rollins trying to make a spring roll. :) He's up next week.

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It's not just you. I'm wondering if they put that in the lineup, after practicing a LOT, in order to trip up the pros. I can only imagine cowboy Kent Rollins trying to make a spring roll. :) He's up next week.

 

That would be interesting to say the least!

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I have a couple of "secret ingredients" that I use in specific pairings, and I'd be sure to include those. 

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Do it! Apply! I mean, it's doubtful there will be a second season, but it seems like an easy guarantee of $5-20K for the home cooks.

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I'd list cornbread as one of the items. Now, only if you really live down south do you crumble it up and put it in a tall glass of milk or buttermilk. PaPaw and I would have ours out on the front porch after supper.

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I didn't like the contestant. They better bring a little more realistic action next week, or I'm gonna bag this show.

 

And seriously, Milk & Cookies?   Ridiculous for a real competition.

 

I also thought Cat's dish sounded amazing.  I bet if she had cooked the pork a little longer, she would have won.  I was hoping she would. 

 

Call me crazy, but I've always loved Stefan since his first Top Chef appearance, and the 2nd, plus other shows he's been on.  His oversize ego is hilarious, because he absolutely has a good heart underneath. Plus I think he's adorable.  *LOL*

Edited by leighdear

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