|The Next Iron Chef, Season 3, begins on October 3.|
If there ever was a chance for home cooks to battle it out in that venue, I'd be all over it. I recently went to a casting call for The Next Food Network Star (nothing came of it; let's not get excited) and in my far-fetched dreams, I was thinking that one of the biggest thrills of the competition would be to compete in the mini-Iron Chef challenge.
I'm really that much of an Iron Chef geek.
I know there's no chance I'd ever compete there outside my fantasies, but a girl can dream.
Meanwhile, reality says that there's a new Next Iron Chef competition coming up. The list of chefs is interesting: Marco Canora (Chef & Owner of Hearth, Terrior, and Terroir TriBeca, in New York), Bryan Caswell (Chef & Owner, Reef, Stella Sola, and Little Bigs, in Houston, Texas), Maneet Chauhan (Chef at Vermillion, in Chicago and New York), Mary Dumont (Executive Chef at Harvest, in Cambridge, Mass.), Duskie Estes (Chef & Owner of Zazu Restaurant + Farm, Bovolo, and Black Pig Meat Co., in Sonoma County, Calif.), Marc Forgione (Chef & Owner of Marc Forgione, in New York), Andrew Kirschner (Executive Chef of Wilshire, in Santa Monica, Calif.), Mario Pagán (Chef & Owner of Chayote and Lemongrass, in Puerto Rico), Celino Tio (Chef & Owner of Julian, in Kansas City, Mo.), and Ming Tsai (Chef & Owner of Blue Ginger, in Wellesley, Mass.).
My immediate thought was that one chef was not like all the others. While some of the restaurants and chefs were sort of familiar to me, Ming Tsai is very familiar. He's had his own television shows. He has appeared on other shows. This is a guy who could probably walk into the Food Network and create his own show tomorrow. So why is he competing to be an Iron Chef?
Maybe it's not just me who thinks the show is cool. Maybe chefs think it is too - even famous chefs?
So folks, are you going to watch it? Are there any chefs that you're rooting for? Me, I'm rooting for Ming, but I'll have to see how the others stack up. I wasn't on the Michael Symon bandwagon initially, but since then I've come to really like they guy. And having him as a judge on The Next Iron Chef will make the show even better for me. I love his giggle.