Wednesday, February 24, 2010

The Other Man.

I love cooking. I don't necessarily love to cook but I love cooking really tasty dishes. I love the challenge of preparing a meal with the perfect combination of flavors.

I have written here in the past of how I love the Pioneer Woman and how I bought her cook book (let me just tell you I tried her recipe for her Barbecue Jalapeno Poppers and they are incredible. I have made them four times already). I may have written how I have a Bobby Flay cook book. I may have written here in the past that I enjoy being in the kitchen. I also enjoy cooking shows such as Chopped, Food Network Challenge and Iron Chef.

My problem with all cook books and cooking shows is that none of them, not one single one that I have watched or read, ever, and I mean EVER, take into account that while I am cooking or trying a new recipe, my three year old is going to yell from the other room that I need to come and see his poop right now, because he went poop in the potty. When I run into the other room to see it, spatula in hand, I take 30 seconds to admire his achievement that I end up burning the salmon steaks because I had them on the frying pan too long.

The reason I burn it, is because I was interrupted and I also I don't understand the WHYS of cooking. Most cook books teach you how to cook or what to cook. None really teach why you do certain things when.

The only chef/TV cook/cook book author I have ever seen explain the whys is Alton Brown from the Food Network TV show Good Eats. His show is awesome and explains the whys. Lauren, for Christmas, bought me two of his books. Both books are great because they explain the whys of cooking. They explain that certain foods need to be cooked at certain temperatures because of the chemical breakdown of such foods. Alton Brown is a food scientist. His show is entertaining and it is one of the few shows Lauren and I enjoy watching together. But his books, they teach why certain things should be done certain ways while cooking. Understanding the why really helps in preparing a meal, especially if you know you are going to be interrupted by children.

I never liked Science Class but if my 9th grade science lab teacher, Mr. Mossburg, was to Hypothesize why dry rub ribs take longer to cook then say marinated ribs, and that the Purpose was to establish the correct cooking times and the Materials list included cayenne, garlic cloves and braising liquid, with the Constant being the same oven, I may have actually gotten a B in his Class. I may have also weighed 300 lbs in high school but I would be a smart 300lbs.

Lauren found out that Alton Brown was doing a food demonstration in our area and she bought tickets for us as a Valentine's Day gift. Leading up to the show Lauren became somewhat obsessed with Alton Brown. She read everything online that she could. During conversations she would throw little tidbits of Alton's life at me. She sent me links to information about his books and shows. She denied it but I joked with her that she had developed a little crush on Alton Brown. I may have been a little jealous on all the attention he was getting. Alton Brown, for a week, became the other man.

We went to the show last Friday night. Alton Brown was awesome. He was on stage for two hours. Out of the two hours, I am going to say only 25 minutes was dedicated to the actual food demonstration. The rest of the time was like watching a stand up comic performer.
He was funny. He was incredibly funny, hysterical actually.


He took a lot of questions from the audience and he was quick and sharp and very witty. He was charming and sarcastic without being too cocky. He did this all while teaching about the science of food. It was a great, great show.

I think I developed a little crush on Alton myself.


The winners of the Saxbys Gift Cards are Mrs. P, Susie, and Katie. Please email me your addresses so I can mail you the gift card.

27 comments:

Susie said...

Well, I will have to check out Alton Brown. I like to understand the "whys" too. And am I THE WINNING SUSIE?? You know where to reach me.

eclectic said...

OK. Sold. I haven't heard of him before, but I now want to run right out and buy one of his cookbooks. Seriously. It sounds awesome, and I love cookbooks!

Erin said...

I'm with Lauren ... but I don't like to call it an actual "crush" because, well, he's not really my type. I DO find him hilarious and smart and I'm so jealous you got to see him in person.

Daddy Geek Boy said...

Yeah, WonderWife™ has a bit of a crush on him herself. It's okay, cause I dig his show. Pro'ally seen every episode.

Gracie and Lukes Mom said...

LOVE Alton. We have 2 of his cookbooks and never get tired of reading all the "why?"s

for a different kind of girl said...

I am also in the 'I love Alton' camp, too, for all these reasons. I didn't know he did speaking tours. Now I have my own reasons for stalking him - to see if he ever comes around here!

gigglepotamus said...

where geek meets stud.

alice said...

I dig him, too! :)

Anonymous said...

I knew it! The bloggers are a cult of their own! They like to Blog,and they all like Mr. Brown. William, you do fit right in. I guess I don't blog 'cause I am not up-to-date on the new crazes, or should I say crazies. Never heard of this dude. How do you find them? Too much time on your hands...or too much time on line...do you have a REAL job? Remember, when you're interrupted with cooking, take the pan off the hot burner before you leave the kitchen. When you return, you can continue and no harm done to the food while you were gone.(speaking minutes here not hours)

Kendall Erin said...

I love Alton Brown!! Catch every show, and totally have a crush on him!! Would love to see him live!

House of Pugs said...

Alton rocks! It's one of the shows I can say without doubt that both my husband and I love watching!

Darcy said...

Thanks for posting this! I haven't seen too many blogs talking about the event, and was curious to how it went since we couldn't be there.

For those asking before, you can catch AB every M-Th at 8PM Eastern on Food Network (except when they are pre-empting him to promote other lame shows) and at 11PM Eastern. His next new episode will be on Curry!

Anonymous said...

He looks like the Teacher in Grease 2 who sings "Reproduction"

teri said...

I LOVE learning the science part of cooking, it helps me understand why you put cilantro and not thyme on things, etc.

Glad you had a great time.

The Absence of Alternatives said...

I need to check out Alton Brown definitely! my youngest loves watching cooking shows even though he only eats WHITE food. He loves that Italian lady on PBS (well, we don't have cable...) Alton Brown may be a good alternative. I hope there are DVDs! By the way, the way you describe why you cook is so MAN-ly. ;-) Always up for a good challenge, eh?

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Shannon said...

Never heard of him before, but I'll definitely check him out. I like knowing the whys of cooking, too. Makes me more likely to follow the directions. :o)
Thanks for the recommendation!

iatraveler said...

Oh, I adore Alton Brown. Doug and I used to sit and watch his food porn every night.

Mrs. Priss said...

Justin and I are HUGE fans of Alton, but in our case, I'm pretty sure he has the bigger crush on the guy. I'll be minding my own business in the kitchen and Justin will pop up out of nowhere and start speaking all food-sciency at me and telling me I'm not doing things The Alton Way.

It's an issue.

That's so awesome you two were able to see him! I love hearing that he wasn't a douche. I like him even more now. :)

James (SeattleDad) said...

Never heard of him, but he sounds funny and cool at the same time. Good combo.

Bogart in P Towne said...

We also love Alton...Good Eats rocks...but C's favorite cook is me. I am funny and cute and I cook bacon with nothing but an apron on...wait, that is TMI, isn't it?

Anonymous said...

What do Ben Folds, Clark Kent, and this guy have in common?
You have lunch boxes with their faces on them.

Kari Anne said...

Found you through Daddy Scratches... Love your blog...and love the title!

Alton Brown is TOO FUNNY!! My daughter is going to be jealous that you got to see him in person...but...that's okay...I took her to see Paula Deen in Dallas a couple of years ago...and in her book...Paula and Alton are top of the chart!! Hopefully, he will come our way one day and I can take her to see him too... Great blogging...keep up the good work...

kittenpie said...

Can't tell you how jealous Misterpie would be. I joke with him that Alton Brown is his celebrity boyfriend, too.

Pamela said...

http://www.americastestkitchentv.com/

America's Test Kitchen is pretty good about the explaining of the why, maybe not as much as Alton Brown but pretty good too.

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