Someone asked me the other day who are my favorite chefs on The Food Network. I like to judge my favorites by how many recipes I made from that chef that are successful. The number 1 is obvious from my last post. Giada's recipes are easy, well balanced flavors and are pleasing to my friends and family. Second place goes to Alton Brown. Although I wouldn't consider him a chef, most of his recipes are cullanarily sound and use good everyday techniques. I have usually been able to slightly alter his recipe to improve on depth of flavor. Number 3 is probably Ina Garten. Her outrageous brownies are the best I have ever tasted (verified by my daughter, niece and nephew all in college).
My least favorite you ask? Tyler Florence comes to mind. Charming on TV, I watch him regularly, but each time I make one of his recipes, its bland and lacks depth. They usually taste like something you would get from a box or premixed package.
Paula Deen is right up there. With my desire to eat more healthly, her recipes contain at least a pound of butter, a pound of maynaise or a pound of sour cream. All of which is out of scope for me. I dont think she can make anything without one of those ingredients. My dad used to say the difference between food and gourmet food was the quantity of butter in the recipe. If this is true, her recipes must be on top of the gourmet list.
Sandra Lee uses processed foods to make her recipes. As i have migrated to quality ingredients, using processed foods in any recipe makes that recipe taste like processed foods.
The others like mega stars Emeril and Rachael Ray are interesting. Emeril's recipes are complicated, lots of technique and plenty of ingredients, but usually tasty (his food at his Orlando restaurant was outstanding). Rachael is a personality that cooks things quickly. She has some good ideas, but nothing that grabs me by the tongue and says wow.
Next post i will tell you about my favorite chefs from other sources.