Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Food For Thought

I was watching the Food Network this evening while working out on the elliptical machine at the gym. Which raised a couple of thoughts in my high-impact-exercise-addled brain:

* Why do so many people, when working out, tune in the Food Network on the TVs there? For so many people, the whole point of working out is to burn off the calories from eating (too much, perhaps.) So, there I am - burning about 500 calories in a half hour, watching all sorts of scrumptious calorie-laden dishes being prepared before my very eyes. It just seems...wrong, somehow.

Julia ChildGraham Kerr* Also, if someone had told me 30 years ago that there would someday be an entire television channel devoted to food and cooking shows, I would have thought they were crazy. Back in those days, cooking shows were one of those neat ways of creating cheap Canadian content - build a kitchen set, and have some person yak away, preparing food. It probably started in the 1960s with Julia Child and her show The French Chef (Ms. Child was neither French, nor a chef, but nevermind.) Canada picked up the trend with Graham Kerr and The Galloping Gourmet, which added some lighter comedic moments to the genre. They even appeared together in a 1995 show, "Cooking in Concert: Julia Child & Graham Kerr."

* Peculiar side note: the only clips I can find of The Galloping Gourmet on YouTube have been translated into a foreign language, like this one, but you'll get the idea. A decent clip of The French Chef is here, for example - there are lots more out there.

Now, of course, we have Jamie Oliver, Nigella Lawson, Michael Smith, Ricardo and, of course, Rachel Ray...and so many more. Maybe we're gluttons for punishment...

Bon appetit!

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