The cooking on Top Chef is, as most chefs will tell you, about as realistic as the medicine practiced on House. But that doesn't mean you can't see the real thing if you look hard enough. Consider RealMeals, a brand-new, just-launched website which specializes in videos of both professional and amateur chefs actually cooking. This kind of instructional/aspirational video has been coming into vogue in recent months (Chow has produced a number of really good ones.) But RealMeals is both more interesting and more New York-oriented.
Among the highlights we've enjoyed:
Even more enjoyable, from a visual point of view, are some of the home cooks. These kitchens make Jerry Seinfeld's look huge.
A guy named Austen in a bowling shirt and a cowboy hat makes a pretty respectable tarragon chicken in the smallest kitchen we've ever seen a video filmed in.
Nat from Jersey City makes beer-can chicken, complete with spices from the bodega and, of course, a can of PBR to support the bird.