A Food Network Challenge - Stop Being Racist
Oh man, that's a loaded word, isn't it? The R word. Yeah, you don't go yelling fire in a crowded theater and you probably shouldn't go calling people racist. Well, not unless they somehow are. And it seems that Food Network likes to stick its minorities in their place.
I came to this realization while watching Chopped. It pissed me off when they said something about meals not having continuity with every meal. As if a chef can plan ahead on what their continuity and theme of the meal will be when you throw random shit in the basket before the start of the show. You really can't tell someone to have "continuity" when their ingredients are a secret until 30 seconds before they start cooking. It's just not possible.
Then I started waiting for that one contestant to make a French-toast Napoleon with layers of mascarpone or ricotta ice cream. Because really, that would truly be the dessert to end all Chopped deserts.
The only problem there is that they would be declared the loser for not "Staying true to their roots/cooking with their soul" or "not within the continuity of the meal" bullshit.
But it was that one aspect that really pissed me off. The whole notion of "staying true to your roots" thing that always gets me if the judges bring it up. It's just furthering the notion that Asian people better make Chinese food and Hispanic people better make Mexican food. Because I noticed that on Next Food Network Star, the Hispanic woman said she didn't want to be pegged as the Mexican chef, so she cooked French food. The judges panned her and told her she wasn't staying true to her roots, so now all she cooks is all Mexican food influenced by her Mexican mother and Mexican grandmother and telling "relatable stories" of how she's first generation American in her Mexican family.
I really wish someone would call the judges out on their blatant racism instead of just pandering to them. It's disturbing to see how they get away with regularly telling chefs "you can only cook food from your race, no mixing!" in their competitions. It's also disturbing how many of the chefs seem to believe they should only cook within their own culture.
Just look at Aaron Sanchez, who lost the first Next Iron Chef because of this. That time around they seemed to actually be thinking it would be a good idea for an Iron Chef to use as many styles as possible. In the second round they told him they really liked his food but he was being really "one note with Mexican dishes". Then they cut to him talking to the cameras being amazingly offended that they would dare ask him to cook a different style of food. He still managed to basically place third.
But yeah, this whole notion of sticking to your ethnic roots is so much bullshit. Or didn't you know that staying true to his Irish roots was how Bobby Flay became so popular? I would love to read his biography if it includes a section on how growing up in his Irish grandmother's kitchen, roasting poblanos on the grill, so she could use them in traditional Irish barbecue made him the Iron Chef he is today.
But you know that if anyone on Next Food Network Star tried to call him on that shit that there's no way they wouldn't be crucified at the Alter of Flay for such tongue. I guess it just goes to show you that white people can cook whatever they want whenever they want. It's only the ethnics that should stay in their place.
What next, are they going to make the Cajun chef get water from a different faucet? I would suggest that people should complain about this, but if anything, Food Network would assume that it means that ratings are increasing. That's what they did with NFNS. There was a drama queen in the running who's sole purpose in being on the show was to start shit up.
She basically manufactured drama for no other reason than she could. Those crazy amounts of ratings offsets any negative reaction from the small number of people writing in to complain about such blatant racism. After all, the food network is all about drama. That's why it's called the food network.
Or maybe they put the ethnics into a pigeon hole because they don't want to turn off the viewers who would otherwise be confused on the matter. Because, why is that there Mexican girl cooking Foy-grass and not tacos and burritos?
Don't believe me in all this? Here you go, here's the video:
Challenge: "Wow us with a sophisticated breakfast." She makes crepes.
Cooking French food: 11:03-11:18
Showing her food: 18:00-18:42
Second challenge: 27:55-31:17
(even the amazing Alton Brown has her be less "Mexican")
So yeah, perhaps Food Network should be less racist. Hell, at this point I'll settle with just less reality show like. Get back to what worked... COOKING! What ever happened to television station that was all about cooking things.