And the winner is: Paula Deen vs. Sandra Lee!

Last week's poll results are in, and the winners are Sandra Lee and Paula Deen!  Most of you folks would like to see these two chefs duke it out in the Iron Chef America ring.  Let's take this thing a step further.  In honor of Chocolate Obsession week on the Food Network, I think that the secret ingredient should be chocolate.

Both of these beauties have chocolate episdoes coming up.  Paula has her Sexy Southern Chocolate episode airing February 11 at 10:30 am ET/PT, February 13 at 4:00pm ET/PT, and February 20 1:00pm ET/PT.

Sandra takes a stab at the chocolate craze with Chocolate 2.  This episode airs twice February 11, at 11:00 am ET/PT, and February 12, at 5:30pm ET/PT.

Let's see who tackles the fine art of chocolate cooking the best.  My money is on Sandra Lee.  I know everyone loves Paula, but you also know that I'm not one of them.  Go team Sandra Lee!!

What do you think?  Who will come out on top with Battle Chocolate?


It's a very drunken Christmas with Semi-Homemade's Sandra Lee

mayflowerThis Christmas, Sandra Lee's cup runneth over with festive ways to intoxicate yourself and your tree with a Semi-Homemade cocktail party.  I know there are a lot of people out there who don't like the way Sandra "cooks," but I have to admit, out of all the styles of chefs/cooks on the Food Network, my style of cooking more closely resembles that of Sandra Lee than anyone else's.  In fact, the picture on this blog is from my Thanksgiving.  It is one of Sandra Lee's Mayflower Martini's and I made it for my guests.

Yes, she makes a lot of cocktails, but these Christmas ones look delicious and festive!  She is entertaining her guests with a Frosty Cocktail, a Candy Cane Cocktail, and a Gingerbread Martini.  I don't know anyone who has all of the liquor's required for all these cocktails, but maybe if you pick just one festive treat for your guests, I think they'd appreciate the creativity and get into the holiday spirit. 

Even if making drinks isn't your style, Sandra Lee has come up with the oddest tree decorating tip I've ever seen in my life.  She suggests taking all of the glasses out of your cupboard and stringing them upside down on your tree to resemble bells.  I'm on your side Sandra, but this idea was ridiculous.  Let's forget for a moment that using your goblets on the tree and making your guests drink out of jelly jars is tacky, but they didn't look like bells.  They looked like you drank a few of your cocktails when you decorated your tree and hung up the first glass objects you found.  Cocktails good.  Cocktail glass ornaments bad.  And if the ornaments didn't scream drunken Christmas enough, the tree was topped with a nutcracker holding his very own frosty Martini.

Sandra Lee also made some appetizers to go with the drinks and insists that the hearty foods will balance out the copious amounts of alcohol.  If you'd like to check out this episode it airs December 20th at 5:30pm and December 25th at 12:30pm.


Halloween help from the Food Network

The spooking season is upon us.  It's time to ply those kids with sugar and make some crazy cupcakes.  Can't bake?  No problem!  The Food Network is gearing up for this scary time of year by releasing a number of specials that will help turn your quaint country cottage into a haunted mansion.

Emeril kick's off this Halloween season with a Bam!  He's airing special episodes all week for "Sweets and Treats" week.  Those episodes include Shrunken Heads and Graveyard Pudding.

Sandra Lee has a special Semi-Homemade Halloween like only Sandra could do.  In this special, she shows us how to candy our own apples and make a spooky pizza.  I caught a glimpse of this episode last weekend and she dresses up in different costumes for every segment.  Doesn't everybody wear ten different costumes in one evening?  I will defend her multiple outfit changes by saying that it could concieveably give someone an idea or two about what to dress up as, but in true Sandra Lee fashion, her outfits are very over-the-top just like her tablescapes.  If you want to spend a couple of hundred dollars on your costume, by all means, take a page from the book of Sandra Lee's costume catalog.  Her special airs October 28th at 5pm ET/PT, or October 29th at 7pm ET/PT. 

Lastly, if you ever wondered where your favorite trick or treat candies came from, then check out Spooky Treats Unwrapped.  Marc Summers takes you through the world of candy making and explores the manufacturing of scary treats like wax fangs and ghost shaped Peeps.  He also throws in some classics like Mike and Ikes and the ever so scary Pez.  AHHHH! PEZ!!! Flee for your lives!  Just kidding.  Sadly he doesn't explore the tiny chocolate bars that were always my favorite treat to be plopped into my pillowcase for Halloween.  I guess Unwrapped has explored the world of chocolate so many times that the show felt another chocolate segment would be over kill, but I say, you can never have too much chocolate.  This special airs October 28 at 4pm ET/PT, and October 29th at 2pm ET/PT.

For the Food Network Halloween page click here.  This page has a lot of helpful Halloween party tips for any of you last minute party planners.  It has costume ideas, decoration plans and, of course, delicious spooky recipes.


Men are "reach"ing for Giada and other sexy cooks

Thanks to an e-mail I received from Erica Cerulo this week, I caught an interesting glimpse into the mind of the modern day man.  Erica pointed me to an article in Details Magazine entitled, Sexpots in the Kitchen by Jeff Gordinier.  Fellow food Blogger, Adam Byrd also caught the article, and was quoted in the article, no doubt due to it’s detailed homage to Giada and her “reach.” 

According to the article,  “(The Giada Reach) happens whenever Giada De Laurentiis…spies a key ingredient—extra-virgin olive oil, juicy Italian sausage, whatever—that seems to have been placed ever-so-slightly too far away from the stove. She must therefore lurch forward for the ingredient, and into the camera, leaving the viewer with no choice but to zero in on the scooped neck of her shirt.”

This is the fascination - sexy women in the kitchen.  It’s so simple, yet, so effective.  The modern day woman has forgotten this alluring trick.  We go off to jobs, earn oodles of money, go to the gym, and run errands like pros, but somewhere amongst saving the world, something had to give.  So we dropped cooking off the schedule and made it an endangered species. 

I’m all for throwing guys for a loop and doing a throwback to the hoop skirt era, but I can’t help but be reminded of an old acquaintance of mine.  I dated someone a while back who was more turned on by me in an apron than me in a low cut shirt, and I have to admit I was a bit offended.  I work so hard to look attractive, and ended up getting more attention in a huge, unflattering apron with flour on my face and nutmeg in my hair.  This guy is no longer in my life for a lot of archaic reasons such as these and other pretty stupid things, but alas, this article brought some of the inter workings of man to life.

I ask you.  Where is the article about how sexy a man is in an apron?  I would love it if a guy came over to my apartment with bags full of ingredients, threw on my pink apron and started to whip up some risotto.  I think this allurement works both ways.

In the end of the article, Gordinier redeems himself a bit by quoting fellow blogger, Adam Byrd, explaining the attraction.  “In the end, what’s alluring and subversive about the image of a cheerful lass in an apron is not that she’s playing a housewife per se, but that she appears to be . . . enjoying it. “Because of feminism,” says Byrd, “it’s kind of taboo to want that.”

That makes sense.  I can get behind that.  It’s not ok to wait around like a sad puppy expecting the woman to wait on you hand and foot.  Enjoy me in an apron, but also drool when you see me in a little black dress.  Or better yet, a white tank top and jeans. 

All in all this was a fun article to read and comment on.  Please check it out.  There is also a fun little slide show of sexy TV food women to check out.  They call Sandra Lee the “Stepford Wife” of cooking, and Nigella Lawson the “food-sex” fusion goddess.

All comments are welcome on this.  For Adam’s take, check out his blog

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