Tuesday, September 4, 2007
How Does "Iron Chef America" work?
Are you interested in how “Iron Chef America” works? Do the chefs have a million food ideas revolving through their brains at any given time? Perhaps, some of them do. But, the challengers do receive a list of five potential ingredients. They receive the list between one week and one month before the show. One reason for the list of five ingredients is that perhaps an ingredient will arrive unfit to cook.
The Iron Chef America pantry includes more than 200 basics for use on the show. But, what if they do not stock that exact spice which will make or break a recipe? The chefs also receive $500.00 to go shopping for the missing ingredients. Is there a catch to this? The $500.00 must be spent on a range of items, not just a few very expensive items. They must not buy a higher-quality version of the secret ingredient.
The chefs are allowed to bring special equipment with them. All pantries are checked before the show to make sure that last minute food items don’t magically appear. (It’s been done before.) Everyone must follow the rules. What are the rules? The rule book is based on the original Japanese show.
The magic of stop tape. Television is all about drama. If you don’t act surprised at the secret ingredient, don’t worry, you can keep repeating the scene until you get it right. Each battle has 10 hours of footage. With a snip, snip here and there, the show will be cut to 35 minutes (without commercials). The cooking battle itself is taped in real time. If you drop something on the floor, the whole world knows it. No stop tape here. There are some things that are set up ahead of time for the battle. Stock pots are already simmering on the stove before the competition starts. No one can make stock that quickly!
Stop Tape: The chefs receive extra time to plate their dishes for the judges and Kitchen Stadium chairman – Mark Dacascos.
Stop Tape: Each chef gets 45 minutes to present his or her dishes. The judges get 90 minutes to evaluate the dishes.
This year, 24 episodes were filmed over a 20 day period in January. Talk about ‘no rest for the weary”!
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