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Why Do I Love Alton Brown?

I have never made one of Alton Brown's recipes. I never intend to make one of his recipes, though I certainly wouldn't bet much money on it. In fact, I don't even like a good number of his recipes. Still, I DVR Good Eats and watch it whenever I want to pass 30 enjoyable minutes. What gives?

Alton Brown is my very favorite sort of TV cook--he makes things seem easy as opposed to difficult. Even when he makes his own coconut extract, he makes me think, "yeah, I can do that--I never will, but I could." Many TV cooks do that, though--Alton's genius, and it is a form of genius, lies in his personality. He is witty, funny, goofy, knowledgeable, and resourceful--Lord, is he resourceful. He has an absolute fetish about kitchen implements being multi-taskers, and quite an admirable obsession it is when people have more things in their kitchen then they know what to do with. Plus, he has a weird fixation with using things from the hardware store for culinary purposes, perhaps most notably using a bandsaw blade for slicing a cake into layers. Along with his recurring guest stars (my favorite is "W," the acid-tongued equipment expert), he treats cooking with just the right amount of seriousness, but also simply and with a touch of whimsy. I mean, what other cooking show uses old sock puppets to illustrate yeast or has an occasional villain--the French Chef? He easily reminds us why cooking is fun and that you don't have to have thousands of dollars of equipment to make a yummy cake. Even if you never use his recipes.

Who fans: the rest of my Doctor by Doctor assessments are coming. So, to all one of you, I urge patience. :-)


  1. Reading his cookbooks is also great fun--it's like reading an episode of Good Eats. (and to no one's surprise, the illustrations are also quite amusing)


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