As reality shows go, especially the few aimed at would-be cooks, this recent series on Food Network has it down pat.
It wasn't overdone with endless weeks of hype. Although as a cable network such as FoodTv presents the same show about five thousand times during any one week.
Still, this past Sunday night, 6/26/05, the finale of that network's "Next FoodTV Star" efficiently presented eliminations from four, to three until the final two. Both of whom were then turned over to the viewing audience for the final winner.
In between all this action, we had Eric, a lovable roly-poly black fellow, who made what appeared to be a wonderful seafood platter he called "Kissing Cousins". The dish included lobster, scallops and much more but with the first two ingredients I was sold.
Susannah, the would-be "cooking-lite" guru, too prepared what appeared to be a delicious dish no mind the missing calories. Hers was a Thai chicken dish.
The challenges were quick and creative. The remaining four contestants by this final night, included Hans, Susannah, Dan & Steve, and Deborah.
Deborah, who ended up in second place, was a personable and pretty black woman who would mysteriously instruct viewers to add some of "Daddy's spices" during her food preparation. She also made a serious faux-pas during one challenge when asked how long to cook pork chops. She failed to give a set amount of time, but instead kept insisting they should be cooked until "they're done".
The finalists had what was called a "market challenge". Their mission was to prepare a meal from the contents of a market basket. The contestants also had to cook while answering questions from the press and all had a guest appearance in a cooking show with another celebrated chef.