Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Cooking Up The Dough

Ok, I am just going to warn you right up front that this post will mention Rachael Ray, possibly several times. With that being said, feel free to click elsewhere. No, better yet, head down there on the right and check out my archived posts. Alrighty, for the two or three of you still left, thanks for sticking around. I’ll try to make it worth your time, even though you aren’t out any money, which really lowers the bar for me. However, I will try to excel for you. Or better yet, I will actually get to the point of this post before you too navigate to someplace else. Oh hey, The Carpenters’ ‘For All We Know’ just came on the ole Ipod. What a peaceful song that is.

I was reading on Forbes.com recently about the top earning celebrity chefs. (Warning: here comes my first Rachael Ray mention) Would you believe that Rachael Ray is the top celebrity chef? I think her total was like 16 million a year. That even beat out Wolfgang Puck, who when he found out that Rachael (oops, forgot to warn you that I was going to mention her name again, sorry) makes more than he does, probably could be heard yelling an expletive that rhymes with his last name. What? No, not that word. I’m pretty sure most chefs use a duck’s name in vain when they are angry.

Others on the list were people like Paula Deen, Anthony Bourdain and Bobby Flay. Well, actually they were Paula Deen, Anthony Bourdain and Bobby Flay, not people like them, because those would just be impersonators. One name on the list I did not see was Andrew Zimmern, the host of Bizarre Foods. Although when you see some of the stuff he calls food and subsequently eats, I guess the reasons for him not being on the list are self-explanatory. Seriously, if I was served some of the stuff he has eaten; my body would end up looking like the amazing body of 41 year-old Olympic swimmer Dara Torres, minus the really fit physique and girly parts, of course. Well, maybe scrawny Alfalfa from ‘Spanky and the Gang’ would be more like it. I hate honesty sometimes…

I’m not sure why celebrity chefs appeal to us so much. Perhaps it’s because we are foodies and like all things food and food related. Personally, I really can’t cook. I can grill, smoke (and yes I do inhale, especially when it’s a fruit wood) and BBQ very well, but I am worthless in the kitchen, except when it comes to boiling pasta, adding just the right amount of milk to my cereal or unwrapping a just-purchased piece of red meat and marinating it or applying rub. I even clean my hands (with soap!!) after touching all the red, juicy bloody stuff.

When I thought I was going to lose my job because of blogging at work (and you thought big brother wasn’t watching), I had actually started looking around online for local So Cal culinary schools that I could attend and I was really excited about it. So excited in fact that when HR called to tell me I was keeping my job, I replied with a ‘Really, can I ask why,’ which needless to say, was not the reaction the caller was expecting. I thought it would be great to be able to really know how to cook and maybe even get paid for it. With those hopes Ms. Dashed, I am still pretty useless in the kitchen, though I do make a kick-awesome batch of homemade ice cream using someone else’s pre-mixed goodness.

The sweet thing about becoming a celebrity chef is that it allows you to write cookbooks and cross promote them on TV, ensuring better sales than a relative nobody like me who is trying to sell a cookbook about the 101 recipes that avoid using celery but require a pound of mixed cheeses. It also lets them pursue things like a second show, or a third show or appearances on someone else’s show. And then you get your own line of frozen dinners or spices or even kitchen gadgets, utensils and cookware with your mug on them, not to mention mugs - with your own mug on them, which is about as freaky as trying to figure out how long eternity is. It’ll blow your mind, man. Or wo-man, to be politically correct.

And when you really, really become a big time fancy chef, you get to expand your line of items hawking your name to things like dog food. (Warning: Rachael Ray mention forthcoming) I read this morning that Rachael Ray is now selling ‘Rachael Ray’s Delish.’ Yep, it’s dog food and here’s the thing – all proceeds go to a charity for animals and because I like animals, it somewhat prevents me from bashing it, though I am hopeful you’ll do the bashing for me in the comments section. Just understand that I really, really want to bash it. Really badly. So badly. It almost itches, I want to do it so badly. And that’s what she said. Hmmm, now I feel better.


Sunshine said...

Rachael Ray annoys the piss outta me.

I would pay good money to see Anthony Bourdain smack her.

sari said...

You know, I saw the display with Rachael Ray and a dog on it at the store the other day but as I was shopping with two of my three kids I sailed on by and did not check it out.

At least she's doing something for charity with her celebrity. I like Rachael, but I stopped watching her shows long ago. Which is probably why I still like her, I never ever see her except for her picture somewhere once in a while. And that's surprising, because I'm a huge Food network fan.

I've been so busy I haven't been able to read blogs much lately - I didn't know you were in danger of losing your job because of blogging. That's kind of funny. If I had an office job, I know I'd be in the same boat because who wants to actually WORK when you can be on the internet checking blogs? not me, that's for sure.

Eva said...

Well, unlike Sari, I actually DO enjoy working when I'm at work. Yessiree, I am a model employee who would never waste my company's time by spending it online doing non-work related activities. Like blogging. Or bashing Rachael Ray's dog food.

I love working.

cmk said...

Now I would have used a stronger word than Sunshine in describing what Rachel annoys out of me, but I concur with her assessment of the woman. I really think HBO could put Anthony Bourdain slapping Rachel on pay-per-view--they would make TONS of money, simply because I would pay the fee multiply times to watch. I REALLY have never understood her appeal.

Patti said...

I'm not a big RR fan, but I do like Paula Deen. She's fun to watch.

It's good to know that you wash your hands (with soap!) when cooking. Always a smart idea.

have a good Wednesday!

Employee No. 3699 said...

But will Andrew Zimmern eat her dog food???

chefmom said...

First of all, Thanks for warning me,that this post was about "HER". I can't even type her name let alone spew it from my mouth.
As for yelling Ducks names when I was mad, I was partial to "Wood duck" or "Mallard". Occasionally when I was really mad I would use (readers forewarned) "Red-crested Pochard". I was told to Keep it clean after that one, once. So I went to using "Peking". From then on. Can you tell I'm avoiding the real reject, er I mean subject here? You know me, I could go on for days about "her" and lack of skills. For once, I will keep it quiet and say only this: I would imagine that anything she touches tastes like dog food.

Natalie said...

So I kind of hate Rachel Ray and Paula Deen...a lot. I also watch their shows pretty regularly. I also hate Bobby Flay but he is actually starting to grow on me a little bit, but I mostly hate him. I like to watch their shows and just have a little hate fest. Giadda though, I hate her and can't watch her show (unless she is making something i REALLY want to eat). her head is too big and it freaks me out.

meleah rebeccah said...

I am in shock that Rachel Ray makes more money than Wolfgang Puck.

Whiskey Tango Foxtrot.

Thats Insane!

And I cant stand her...

Mel Heth said...

I'm not really a huge fan of cooking shows...or cooking for that matter...but I did watch the Parmesan episode of Iron Chef recently and it made me shed a delighted tear.

Shouldn't Mario Batali be on that list of moneymakers? He's the one who won Iron Chef and did incredible, edible things with my most favoritist cheese.

Selma said...

I love Anthony Bourdain. I have a little bit of a crush on him. He's very rock'n'roll. I would actually like to see Rachael Ray have a cook-off with Gordon Ramsay. That might take the smile off her face. *Miaow*
My Mum loves her and watches her every day. 'She's such a lovely person,' she says. "Lovely person, lovely food." Sometimes you just can't win. LOL.

Ralph said...

I do watch Food network, and like many of the shows/personalities.

But their brand of cooking is a bit over the top for this reason: The have the food prepared for them in advance - that's why it looks so effortless. One cook and 19 food preparers - it should be easy!

przepisy kulinarne said...

Cool fun. Like me. I like to cook very at home. Greetings from Poland.