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Are Cooking Television Shows Too Unrealistic?

In his blog on the New York Times, food journalist Mark Bittman makes the claim that food television — particularly cooking shows that teach a viewer how to make something — are too unrealistic. Unlike the real world, the chefs never make mistakes and each dish always comes out perfectly. He says:

When you watch most celebrity chefs go to work on TV it is a) baffling and intimidating, and b) a charade. Baffling and intimidating because nearly every ingredient is usually prepared in advance, and what isn’t is selected so that the chef can show off his (almost never “her”) knife skills, which are bound to intimidate nearly all of us who can never aspire (and why would we, really?) to chopping an onion with our eyes closed.

While I understand how the lack of miscalculation may isolate a viewer, I disagree with Bittman. I enjoy the Barefoot Contessa because her world is an escape from my reality: In her sunny Hampton house the food is consistently delicious. Rather than feel intimidated, I feel inspired! What's your take on Bittman's perspective?


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