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Food Snobs - Quit Picking on Rachael Ray!

I do think they are jealous.  Rachael is quickly becoming "everyone’s Emeril" with her quick cooking meals and easy ingredients.  I think it’s pretty hard to "hate" her, so envy must be it.  Slate’s managing editor has a great article, and talks about Rachael Ray’s successes as well as the challenge to actually cook meals in 30 minutes. 

To her credit, Ray has always cast herself as a sort of anti-Martha, offering options for those who want to save money, eat healthfully, and cook at home but don’t have the time or budget to entertain the Turkey Hill way.

That’s the main reason I like her.  Okay, I admit it.  I can’t STAND Martha Stewart!

Regular cooking shows are rife with annoying you’ll-never-be-able-to-replicate-this moments. When the chef begins, meticulously prepared ingredients lie at the ready; he breezes through instruction and then—poof!—pulls out the perfect frittata that’s been waiting in the oven.

Can you say Emeril?

The show is also fantastically entertaining. It’s suspenseful: As the minutes tick by, Ray becomes frenetic—will she finish? (She always does.) And it’s educational: As Ray trims her asparagus and frantically wraps prosciutto around the green stems, she offers tips. Use a "garbage bowl" to collect debris as you’re cooking.

I’ve got one!

Chop chicken into small pieces so it cooks faster.

I do it!

Roll citrus before you cut it, and you’ll extract more juice.

Do that, too!

Forget about measuring—"Eyeball it!"

A regular occurrence in my kitchen! 

Then came the true test, the editor tried to actually cook one of Rachael’s meals in 30 minutes (actually she tried 21 recipes!):

My most successful effort was Ray’s "Back in the Day" menu:  Super Sloppy Joes, Deviled Potato Salad, and Root Beer Floats. I prepped with the same care as Ray—produce pre-rinsed, garbage bowl at the ready, pantry items near at hand—but it took me 49 minutes and 51 seconds (and I skipped the Root Beer Floats).

Rachael can do it though - proven time and time again before live audiences - she’s the real deal.  Cool thing is, I may not have done the Deviled Potato Salad, but I’ve done her sloppy joes well within 30 minutes - and throw in a side dish or two, I am usually very close to 30 minutes.  HOWEVER, I’m not explaining what I do to a camera, I’m not following tele-prompters, and worrying about staging and other such stuff. 

It truly doesn’t matter if these gourmet-style chefs welcome her in their circles or not.  What it boils down to is the fact that she caters to "us" - the parents, the career people, the people who can’t afford expensive ingredients, the people who don’t have time to prepare a meal over the course of 4 hours.  Oh, and she has a special place in the hearts of men who can’t seem to get enough of her shows or her spread in FHM.  Rachael Ray vs. Martha Stewart?  I’d bet on Rachael Ray any day!   

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Jay said:

I lover her show!

Andrew said:

Amen! She's gotten my entire family saying EVOO while we're cooking
- But, let's not be too hard on Emeril! His show is worth watching just to here him shout "BAM!" and "Let's kick it up a notch!"

FoodNetwork Addict

Merri said:

Emeril's okay, Andrew, but he begs to be picked on. ;-) I watch his show every once in awhile, too. He makes some good food!