The Taste: Oh Nigella, Again?

I wrote an article last year about the show “The Taste” where one contestant, I believe her name was Jacquelyn, walked off the set during the show. It was FABULOUS. I mean it, it was utterly delicious, unexpected, and simply divine. She had been on Nigella Lawson’s team. (There’s a shocker!.)

There is something about the way Nigella Lawson acts

as a “Mentor” that drives me a little crazy and it is difficult to put into word but to sum it up…

she’s awful. Sometimes she micromanages and sometimes she’s aloof and always wants to blame the people on her team instead of taking any responsibility herself. She does not know how to mentor people or nurture (I think she’s an ice queen) and frankly I don’t think she can learn. There is something innate about this.You can’t teach some people certain social skills, if they don’t have them.

It’s like asking Ludow (Ludow Lefebvre) not to shout or scream. What an amusing thought. He would have to have a lobotomy and but would he want to? That is his style. Bless him and all of the people that choose him.. Of course he wouldn’t be able to do this, it’s part of who he is. I would basically cry or want to throw objects at his head if I was on his team but I would never BE on his team. If I had my choice (not that I can cook one thing at the level they cook) I would pick Marcus or Anthony.

Speaking of Anthony, is anyone else getting sick of the slobbering one contestant is doing over him. Ms. Flirty Flirt? Sure, he’s a handsome and a very talented guy but, honey, you are making yourself look like an utter fool. What, are you 8 years old? Did you just get over

Justin Bieber? All those double entendres,the camera panniing to see your “orgasmic” look, really woth it? Everyone seems to be making fun of you. Blech, it’s not even cute, it’s practically over the top. Have your crush sweetie, but don’t flaunt it, it makes you look like an ass.

Those shots of your team mates glancing over to you (rolling their eyes?)  that’s for televesion and I am sure, they are judging you too. Of course, dreamy Tony encourages it, he is Anthony Bourdain, he can get away with it, he is a sexy star and a bad ass, he can do whatever he wants. He gets paid extremely well for looking hot.

You, Crush Girl are not and it seems that you are not giving women a good name. Please don’t carry on like this. You will be great on your own, leave your crush on Bourdain at home.

The last episode I watched, Nigella’s team was down to two people (two nervous looking young women, pray for them) and a couple of people left from other teams though I know Bourdain’s team was pretty solid.

This show is pure entertainment and that is wonderful. I also watch Top Chef and frankly I think they have gone over the top showing that poor bunny rabbit, skinned. I couldn’t watch it, my husband did and I screamed like a baby. It still makes me nauseous and sad.

Yes, I know I eat meat, thank you very much, and I accept that I am a hypocrite, so let’s get that over with right now. I don’t need speeches. There are certain animals I can’t eat: rabbits, goats, frogs, ducks and any innards.) I don’t eat a lot of meat at all but when the urge for a cheeseburger comes, I don’t deny it.

I am definitely sticking with The Taste, I love watching it with my husband. It’s not like I’m learning to cook, I”m not. But, it is the most entertaining cooking show on the air, for me.

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Jacquelyn: Were You At “The Taste 2” Finale?

English: Jean Claude Szurdak and Jacques Pepin...

English: Jean Claude Szurdak and Jacques Pepin (right) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Guest judge: Chef Jacques Pepin. In the finals, Marina, Lee and Louise.

The season of “The Taste” is over. As I’ve stated in earlier posts my highpoint of the show was when Jacquelyn exited mid-show, literally walking off stage. She is my Norma Rae. Nigella seriously needs to learn to play with others.

The first test was to make something for the poor and for the rich. It was so uninteresting it really didn’t matter what they made. Basically for the “rich” they added a lot more butter, truffles and caviar. For the “poor,” they all made a stew or soup.

Many past contestants in the audience: I see Cassie and Sarah, Shellie and Don, Audrey and Jay, among others; I am not making this up or exaggerating, I swear, I didn’t know who Audrey was because she didn’t mention “her fans” and she wasn’t complaining.The one person I wanted to see but DIDN’T was Jacquelyn. What, no invite? You people have NO sense of humor.

Final challenge: “Basic cooking: Make me breakfast, lunch and dinner bites that showcase your most dazzling skills.”

They tried. They did TRY.  I didn’t really think anyone made anything over the top that the judges actually swooned over. We’ve all seen good before, the last few episodes missed “stunning and amazing.”The finale did not break the “just ok” pattern. Shame.

Lee: Breakfast: Parmesan flan with bacon quail egg. He forgot that he left his parmesan flan in the oven but remembered at the last second. He saved his behind and put them in the cooler (not his behind, the flan) with bacon, eggs. Pure luck. Lunch: crab cake (he wastes a lot of time trying to get the crabs out of the shell) with avocado. Dinner: strip steak, cauliflower purée..” He was absolutely frazzled,or should I say fried?   Lee plates too soon doesn’t listen to Chef Jacques Pepin who advises him to plate later. Lee is acting cocky, doesn’t listen to the guest Chef.  Poor judgment. Dinner: Strip steak, parmesan tulle, mustard demi glace. Even with his fan favorite girlfriend Cassie giggling (did anyone else notice that rapid fire laugh) nothing could stop him or slow him down.

Marina:  (Chef Pepin looked a little befuddled around her) Marina starts with an (English muffin,?) quail egg, onion, fig and bacon. (“well executed”) :Lunch: Fried spring roll, oyster and pork, deemed (“not that successful.”) Dinner: short ribs, rice, kale, port wine.  She forgets to taste her own food, a definite no-no. Marina won’t take advice from anyone,she listens to no one, she prides herself on that. Marina used chicken testicles and pork blood. She certainly is imaginative. Have you cooked with chicken testicles and pork blood? Me either.

Louise: Breakfast: Fried quail egg with tomato sauce, (similar to Chef Pepin’s model that he displayed.) Lunch: fried oyster po’ boy sandwich, Dinner: steak with red wine sauce (which Chef Pepin salvaged)  potatoes, makes food look beautiful (she is also a food stylist.) She touches the steak and isn’t sure it is ready, Chef Pepin touches it and says 5 more minutes, in it goes. She is more needy and ready to listen to Jacques Pepin and believe me it shows. Her sauce breaks, she can’t use it. Chef Pepin helps her find a teaspoon of meat drippings again. Lousie feels like the underdog (again) and complains about something, was it brioche again? Much to everyone’s surprise, including Louise, she won “The Taste.”  As if she was in “Survivior” Louise flew under the radar, bothered no one, smiled a lot and portrayed herself as the victim.

3rd place LEE, 2nd place Marina, First place Louise

Congratulations? I mean, Congratulations.

The show is over. I’m done. We are all grateful. Would I watch it again? Probably.

*any error of description of food was unintentional and due to extreme fibromyalgia tiredness. I still am annoyed at the amount of alcohol on TV, just sayin’ sponsors?

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Jacquelyn Returns? “The Taste”

Anthony Bourdain being interviewed in the WNYC...

Anthony Bourdain being interviewed in the WNYC radio studio 2006-06-21. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Hey, all you peeps at “The Taste.” I’m still disappointed from last week’s fiasco but I will stay loyal and follow out my journey with the show. Especially since my blog post “Nigella vs Jacquelyn” seems to be one of the most popular posts I have written. It’s catching up to “Calling Eppiglottis A Bitch Is A Vast Understatement” and that’s saying a lot.

I have to assume no producer/manager/ TV bigwig read my last post on all the beer drinking on the show because I really would have liked an answer to that. Please?

Call me a pit bull if you want, I take that as a compliment. I guess I’ve got to spread my wings further and go the network route. Okay, no biggie.

Is tonight the last episode? Is it a double-header (wow that would a cause for a lot of beer drinking?)  However, in my dreams Jacquelyn RETURNS!!! She makes a surprise appearance to shock Nigella and then my life would be complete. Jacquelyn would get a standing ovation and Anthony would decide to take all the credit for Jacquelyn’s success and hire her as a sous chef in one of his restaurants. Nigella will fall to the floor, fainting, (we think) Ludow will start screaming (no shock there) and Marcus would peacefully sit down with his team to sing a folk song.

It’s a good ending to the show. Think about it.

Actually, a reality show STARRING Jacquelyn would be even better. You want ratings, you have them. It would be wonderful. You know I’m right, don’t you? The show will be known by one name, yes, “Jacquelyn,” wonder woman with red hair. Still have to applaud you, Jacquelyn, loved the moxie when you walked off the set, love it even more now, actually have loved it since you DID THAT! That is so ME.

Maybe they will give you your own show. Wouldn’t THAT be a riot! Believe me, I would tune in, every week. This is a fabulous idea. Cutie pie cooks are on by the dozen, but we remember YOU. I should be a station manager or at the very least the President of TV Network.

So dudes, before the show starts, bring back some action, some wonderful taste sensations, even ooohs and ahhhs. We need some exciting food with some exciting television. Step up the adrenalin, the spices, even the conflict if you have to because this show is coming to an end. You don’t want last week’s episode to be left on our tongues do you? I want to be dazzled, my lips need to dance with flavor. Bring. It. On.

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The Taste, Teaser

The best taste

The best taste (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

First blog: Nigella vs Jacquelyn

Second Blog: ( Below ) Aren’t You A Sweetie Pie?  Everything Sweet Except For Anthony Bourdain!!

Read it below:

https://hibernationnow.wordpress.com/2014/02/07/the-taste-aren…-a-sweetie-pie/

Can’t wait to watch and BLOG about my favorite topic and show “The Taste”

Tonight.

Wait for Blog number 3. In the meantime, I’m salivating.

What will the contestants cook tonight? I don’t care,

I’m addicted to food.

Photo Credit: Wikipedia

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“The Taste” 2 (Aren’t You A Sweetie Pie?)

English: Marcus Samuelsson doing a lecture at ...

English: Marcus Samuelsson doing a lecture at Google in NYC. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I never do follow-up blogs on here, but somehow the show “The Taste” just begs to be written about, don’t you think? It’s a great food show but somehow it’s also like a comical farce. Do you believe the characters? Love them but surely they must also be picked for their entertainment value as well as their culinary skills. Right?

The judges, are the most entertaining: Ludow running around, literally running around yelling and screaming at everybody. How can that not be comical? Anthony Bourdain brooding, muttering “I hate dessert” like a five-year old. Nigella Lawson just standing there doing absolutely nothing, the “yellow” star of the day goes to Marcus Samuelsson. Not for the winning dish either but for his calmness and class and just the right amount of instruction. KUDOS, Chef Mark and Team.

I do agree with the other contestants that just because *(sorry, I don’t remember her name) dessert was unusual and unique she should not have won. I never heard anyone say they “loved it.” I heard nothing about the exquisite flavors or different textures, all I saw: scrambled eggs with sugar sauce. Come on guys, really? That was the BEST taste for you or just one that was different?

Anthony Bourdain’s utter dislike for desserts and sweets is legendary, why have that challenge when he is so biased? Would you have a tea drinker judge a coffee contest?  It doesn’t make sense. Why even put it on the show?  If you KNOW one of the judges will hate anything creamy, sugary or sweet why have that challenge at all? It’s a no brainer.

I think that this was a waste of an episode it really should not have been aired, and the special guest star chef, perky* Miss Sunshine? Wow!  Is she always like that? She must be eating a ton of sugar and I get that because I am a HUGE dessert person. I GET desserts, it’s genetically programmed from my German mother and Viennese Dad.

While I was sorry to see *Ms. Food Truck go home because I did think she had have a spark and a passion about cooking I think they kept the right person. Damn that zest and if we have learned anything from that show and for life it is this: Trust your gut instincts. If it doesn’t feel right it probably isn’t. You can use that every single day of your life, many times over. If it doesn’t feel right, don’t do it. Pretend I’m Oprah and listen.

* I apologize for not knowing their names, they were not, as of yet, on Google.

The Taste: Nigella vs. Jacquelyn

Nigella Lawson at a Borders book-signing

Nigella Lawson at a Borders book-signing (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“Hey Nigella, It’s Me, Jacquelyn!” Okay, it’s not really Jacquelyn, it’s just me, a friendly blogger, but I have to say, that really was one of the most entertaining shows I have watched recently.  Jacquelyn, you go girl. I just wish you had walked off the set sooner, like in the middle of one of Nigella’s obnoxious, wishy-washy lectures, her fluttering fussiness and her anxiety driven non-direction, micro-management. Frankly, if I was in your shoes, I would have left way before you. And, unfortunately I probably would have thrown the beer (I’m assuming it was beer but it could have been water or soda) in her lap or face to get more attention.

Jackie, I really don’t think you were treated kindly at all, Nigella did not have control of the kitchen so you, just walked off stage. Kudos!! The timing was a bit awkward, I admit, but subtlety is often quite wonderful. You kept them guessing alright, that did have a stroke of genius to it. Unfortunately, it made Nigella look like the poor, angelic victim and you a bit of the bad boy but I’m sure there are more people than just me that were rooting for you. Believe me. I would imagine the other judges and contestants were rooting for you too.( Perhaps not in front of the camera.) I don’t think Anthony Bourdain was as horrified as he was portrayed,he was practically doing a high-five with his team. I don’t blame him for one minute.

Nigella, please calm down and learn how to talk with people not at people all the time and stop changing your mind and give your contestants some credit. No? Nigella, you need to relax, take a chill pill, ( and no, I am not going THERE) and have a few lessons with a therapist on how you come across. I’m not doubting your ability to cook, of course not. But do you really think that a show like this is showcasing your full set of positive attributes? Right, I don’t think so either. I’m not judging really, I’m a horrible cook and the only thing I can bake is banana bread. So, you definitely win in THAT category. But, relating to your team? I’ve got that by a mile.

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“The Taste”

Anthony Bourdain being interviewed in the WNYC...

Anthony Bourdain being interviewed in the WNYC radio studio 2006-06-21. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“The Taste”  is a show where contestants cook their signature dish down to a taste (a spoon) to compete for a spot on the show. Then each of the four chefs: Anthony Bourdain, Nigella Lawson, Ludo Lefebvre and Marcus Samuelsson taste the ” spoons”with blindfolds on not knowing who cooked them. I like this a lot.

The whole premise is that to get on the show all you need to do, whether home chef or professional is cook an amazing bite of food. You can be 85 or 18,  any race, ethnic background, size, color of hair, wearing pajamas, or standing on your head, it doesn’t matter. It’s like “The Voice” except they are not singing, they are cooking. No rating on anything but talent, as it should be.

Last week, a contestant named Audrey,(aka “the whining blogger in our house) used the word “fans” so many times that the other contestants were mocking her. I was surprised that the other contestants didn’t throw eggs at her (sorry, Justin Bieber, didn’t want to steal your thunder) or maybe in her case, egg whites? Apparently in her blog she makes fattening recipes healthier. Good for you, Audrey, way to go. Now, shut up. Please.

Anthony Bourdain, for me, is the real deal and star of the show, (and yes, he knows it.) He deserves to know it, he owns this show.He is the dominant food dude. He is the bad boy, been around town, charming, smart and who can resist him when he is smiling and there’s a twinkle in his eye? But, contestants, LISTEN TO HIM. He is  incredibly smart and he knows his stuff. If the man specifically says HE HATES TRUFFLE OIL, do not USE truffle oil. Simple, right? You would think. One member of his group either forgot (or decided he wouldn’t notice ) used truffle oil. What were you thinking? AS IF he wouldn’t notice? Don’t be stupid and don’t cross him.

Nigella Lawson, you’ve already lost two on your team and frankly you were seconds away from losing another person the other night. Nigella, you’re scaring me. You need to be more assertive and you are giving female chefs a bad name. We see you running around, doubting yourself and everyone else.  Don’t let a contestant make eggs and bacon if that’s not what you think will win. Can’t you give some suggestions for the sweet element? You are not going to make it, again, if you don’t step up. Now.

Marcus Samuelsson seems nice but he is quiet and understated, I can’t honestly describe him or get a feeling for him, so I’m not judging. He’s no Ludow or Bourdain so he doesn’t have a strong personality.  I’m sure he is a very fine chef but I just don’t know too much about him. The only thing that stood out was that one contestant was clearly confused about the challenge all the way to the end and she should have gotten demerits, at least. He didn’t confront that at all.

Ah, Ludow, Ludow Lefebvre, we know you are French. You keep reminding us. Say no more. Sure you are conceited and competitive but look who has won so far. You shout like a maniac, you micro manage but let’s face it you win. Who can argue with a person that has won the last two times in a row. It’s not my style but apparently it has worked. Good for you Ludow and your arrogant attitude, you deserve yourself. So far, you are in the lead.

It’s a fun show to watch if you like (love) food. Check out the dynamics that go on but more importantly check out the food and the combinations. More importantly, make sure you have a big plate of snacks ready for when you are finished watching the show, my husband and I are starving when this show ends.

Be forewarned.

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