Jonesey's Blog

Jonesey's Blog

The ubiquitous Jonesey

More Stuff.

So it looks as if this is going to be about whatever is floating around in my head at the time. I don't mean private things, or at least not at the moment - on account of how they're, you know, private. I mean the stuff I keep rehearsing to myself when there's nobody there.

I'm not a person who watches a lot of TV. There are very few programs which I absolutely have to watch, and if I'm just watching to fill time then it's about  75% likely that the program is going to be about food. Strictly speaking I don't actually have a TV at the moment - I watch via the "on demand" facility from Xfinfity, which is annoyingly unreliable, and on a cracked screen too.

Then again, from the age of 15 (when I stopped sitting in the front room with my parents of an evening, and was more likely to be out with friends or listening to musicand/orpainting in another room), to the age of 33 when I moved in with Liz, I didn't watch TV at all.

Last year, I attempted to emter the US Masterchef competition. There is no initial sceening of applicants at all,which    meant that I stood in a line for six hours with my food, despite having or so I thought, booked a timeslot for judgeing.  No, I didn't get to the next stage, they felt that the two components of my offering did not go together. I beg to differ, but then I'm not the one offering the prize money.

People who've known me for a while will know that I entered the original British version of Masterchef back in the 90's and got into the pre-TV heat three times. There was no huge money prize back then, but just about every year's winner leveraged the fame to set themselves up in the food industry.

There were several differences from the modern whoop-de-do, and it made a lot more sense. Remember, this is a competition for home cooks and you can't enter at all if you're a professional. So back then, the cooks would each decide what they would cook, and obviously they would play to their own strengths.

So, someone who always cooked Italian would cook Italian, a veggie would cook veggie etc. These were home cooks, that was the whole point - they were displaying the strengths which they used at home, and the judges decided which meal was best.

I remember saying that they should make it a little harder, that they should throw at the contestants the sort of challenge which home cooks might encounter - "You have to cook for eight people. One's a veggie, one doesn't like garlic", etc

But now, they go out of their way to set silly challenges and expect the home cooks to be able to prepare unfamiliar ingredients in peculiar ways. I've been catching up on the latest series, and they don't even make any concessions for the veggie, Hetal. The poor girl can't even taste most of the dishes she's preparing.

This is just silly. The challenges they set are sometimes things I wouldn't expect a professional to attempt, if it weren't the style of cooking they're used to.

Try going into a top-class Italian restaurant and saying, for example "You've got 30 minutes to make me poppadums and chutney", or a Thai and asking for roast beef and yorkshire pudding. I don't think you'd get a good answer.

And I detest the obsessive timing. There has to be some discipline, sure, but cooking, whether at home or in a restaurant is never subject to "5-4-3-2-1-stop cooking, hands in the air!".

If the food takes 30 seconds longer than planned, nobody is bothered. Ever.

And that's about it for today. trivial, I know, but that's what's floating around in my head right now.


Blog Stats

  • Total posts(5)
  • Total comments(1)

Forgot your password?