a maid in the living room, chef in the kitchen …

18 Mar

Having just watched David Rocco’s Dolce Vita, it made me consider what the average viewer wants from their presenter.

David is Canadian Italian and a handsome chap, in that eye-twinkling-I know-I-am kinda way.  What with him and that cheeky Danny Boome, it’s just not right.

As a 30-something female, I’m used to having a procession of attractive women give advice on how how to entertain friends, bake the perfect cake or create the ideal Sunday roast – all with a wink and a licking of the lips.  I’m no longer a 25 year old threatened by Nigella’s heaving bosom or embarrassed by Dervla Kirwan’s M&S voice over.  I pretty much expect a knowing look to camera as a sausage is suggestively eaten and find this amusing.  I’ve never met Nigella but I bet she’s a bloody good laugh and knows what she’s doing and it’s all done in jest (I have, however, seen her briefly at a book event and can confirm her ridiculous beauty).

But what do I want from Nigella’s male counterparts?  In one episode David Rocco flashes a toothy smile and winks while chomping on a mouthful of fagiolini as his silver medallion glistens in the Florence sunshine [shudder].  So, what is the male version of the old adage?  Are we given a fatherly figure in the kitchen?  Certainly with chefs such as Rick Stein and Raymond Blanc – of course I’ve been assuming that all men who are that way inclined must be attracted to Ms Lawson, Lorraine Pascale, Gizzi et al.  Maybe I just haven’t found my ideal man in a TV cook yet.

I’m only just realising that the Hairy Bikers have ardent followers (Si King being the favourite I’m told) so, naturally, it’s horses for courses.  I don’t think I want the distraction of a sexy chef putting me off my food.  Don’t get me started with the Fabulous Baker Brothers.  Oh.  My.  God.  Pretentious in the extreme and I only managed 20 minutes.  Not sexy, not fabulous.  Master bakers, I’m sure.

I am happy to watch Gizzi purr away but give me a man who knows his onions any day of the week.  Hmmm, I wonder if Trent Reznor knows his way round an oven?


2 responses to “a maid in the living room, chef in the kitchen …

  1. Lena

    March 19, 2012 at 10:55 am

    Oh, I miss watching Rocco go around on his scooter/in his car in ridiculously beautiful Italy, not only he but everything – his friends, the places he goes, the weather – is lovely…(selfishly I hope this means his books will show up here in the UK, not like I *need* more but the books are just as lovely with plenty of pictures of him & his pals and oh yeah, the *food*)…

    The whole confluence of food & sex appeal is one, for me, where if the guy/gal is really *into* whatever they are making, that makes them in turn sexy as well; but the focus has got to be on the food for me. I’m sure as a kid I was imprinted this way by watching The French Chef with Julia Child, who could never appeal to me but was so passionate about what she was doing – not so much tasting the food & oohing and aaahing but just the actual process…

  2. chef de cuisine

    March 19, 2012 at 2:40 pm

    Ah, yes – Chris the photographer! I think it was a full 3 minutes before anything was really said – it looked like a pop video.

    For me, I think anyone who’s produced a book or a show has illustrated their passion & enthusiasm enough so I’m all for straightfoward, no nonsense 🙂 If I just don’t like the person, then it’s difficult to watch (I’m talking about you, Jane Grigson … sorry!).


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