- Chef Jose Garces's winning moment on Season 2 of The Next Iron Chef
Chef Jose Garces won Season 2 of The Next Iron Chef, and this Sunday he’ll join the judges’ panel to critique the efforts of our current rivals. We caught up with the newest Iron Chef about being in the rivals’ shoes just one year ago and what he’s been up to since his big win.
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- Would YOU want to be thown into the shark tank with this guy?
Facing down an Iron Chef is not for the faint of heart (or knife skills). When she got the call to kitchen stadium, Chef Amanda Cohen’s first reaction was “I don’t think so.”
Having just opened restaurant Dirt Candy in New York City’s East Village, Chef Cohen explains on her blog that she thought “they were looking for chumps to throw into the shark tank with their big time Iron Chefs and I didn’t want to be savaged and mauled on national TV.” However, as the first vegetarian chef asked to be on Iron Chef, she realized it gave her a platform to show that “Dirt Candy is just about food, and it’s about vegetarian food as nothing more than cooking vegetables – no politics, no health claims or virtuous living, just giving vegetables a chance to be treated as seriously as chefs treat pork.”
Pitted against Iron Chef Morimoto, Chef Cohen details her entire experience taping the show (which she calls an “epic tale”) on her blog, which we encourage you to read, as well as learn more about Cohen who also did stints at New York’s famous Angelica Kitchen and Teany.
Can the first vegetarian Chef in Iron Chef America history take down the near mythical Masaharu Morimoto? Tune in this Sunday, August 29 at 10pm/9c to Iron Chef America on Food Network and find out.
– Brandy Shearer
- Farmer Jones is this blogger's newest Facebook friend.
Celebrity chefs are everywhere these days, but I think I’ve just met my first celebrity farmer. Farmer Lee Jones supplies vegetables to top chefs all over the country, but he’s a star in his own right, always decked out in his signature bow tie-and-overalls ensemble. Check him out on Facebook—he’s got 4,832 friends!
If you caught Battle Cauliflower on Iron Chef America a couple of weeks ago, you may recognize Farmer Jones. He provided the secret ingredient straight from the farm, and also joined in on the judges’ panel. Chefs Michael Symon and John Fraser produced some incredible cauliflower creations, using not just the familiar white florets, but also Farmer Jones’s purple, orange and romanesco varieties. Notoriously finicky judge Jeffrey Steingarten called it “the most amazing battle ever.”
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We came so close to fooling you smarty pants with this addition of “What’s Shooting Now,” but in the end…. you guys reigned supreme! Here is the reveal….
This is the final tally from all of your submitted votes.
(Accumulated from both Facebook and here on FN Dish):
Iron Chef America = 37 votes
Chopped = 30
The Next Food Network Star = 4
30 Minute Meals = 1
Giada at Home = 1
Chef vs. City = 1
The Next Iron Chef = 1
A view from Kitchen Stadium above the lighting grid as the crew and culinary department make final touches on the set.
Alton Brown’s Point of View in Kitchen Stadium, fully stocked with yellow sticky notes.
FACT: It takes four to five hours to produce an episode of Iron Chef America. Many contestants, including Iron Chef Michael Symon, have been badly cut, burned, battered and bruised, but we have never stopped the clock during a battle!
- Joe, Honorary FN Historian
Go to Food Network Fun Fact #1
What do you get when you mix breakfast cereal, a passion for food and a keen ability to multi-task? Rob Bleifer, the executive chef who manages 15 different Food Network shows. I caught up with Rob for a rapid-fire round:
Read more about this passionate, cereal-loving multi-tasker here.
Yes, we work here but many of us are true fans as well. We watch the shows, try the recipes and live the life. Crazy…but true.
That said, one new FN show is seemingly creating even more buzz in the halls than usual. CHOPPED, hosted by Ted Allen, premieres tonight, triggering heightened chatter around our fancy, coffee maker-sized watercooler. Frantic sous chefs, insane time constraints, amazing food, flowing tears — all good.
Without giving it away, Rene Lynch (Daily Dish blog on the LA Times) summarized it best…
The format makes for one heck of a nail-biting experience, and it succeeds in placing the viewer in the shoes of the contestants. Who hasn’t raced around their kitchen, staring at the mismatched ingredients in the cupboard, while the clock is ticking?
Ok — enough shamless promotion.
Tune in tonight and let us know what you think…
Watch the promo here.
On special occasions, FN offers private tours to visiting dignitaries, celebrity chefs and the like. One FN’er, Joe, takes time from his day job to lead this behind-the-scenes tour.
A recent tour-ist, Lana, suggested… “You could ask Joe what questions folks ask the most (during tours). I’ll bet it’d make an interesting read.” Good post, Lana. Thanks, Joe. Here goes:
Q) Who gets to eat the food?
A) Who ever is closest – studio crew etc… We only purchase food for what we are making that week and we donate to any extras to City Harvest each Friday.
Q) On Iron Chef America, do they know the secret ingredient?
A) Before the show, the chefs are told that it could be one from a list of items. The challenge is still amazingly difficult to pull off in an hour. Plus, the cameras never stop rolling…no matter what.
Q) Are all of the Iron Chefs here for each show?
A) When we shoot a battle, there is only one. The others are stand ins.
Q) What is the weirdest ingredient a challenger chef requested on Iron Chef?
A) Jose Andres – Goat testicles
Bonus fact — Our offices are on the site of the original Nabisco factory. The Oreo was invented here in 1912.
The FN Dish’s Bruce Seidel visits Iron Chef Cat Cora at a book signing and Bon Appétit culinary demo.
FN DISH CONTEST!
To win an autographed copy of Cat’s new book, Cooking from the Hip, tell us about your favorite Cat Cora recipe in the comments section below!
Contest Ends: Sunday, November 23, 11:59PM/10:59c
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