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Forget ‘Top Chef,’ Here’s What Real Cooking Looks Like

A cooking show that might be a little too realistic.Photo courtesy RealMeals.TV
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:

Patricia Yeo making cocoa and peanut–glazed spareribs at Sapa. Could Yeo be the nicest chef in New York? We suspect so.

Orhan Yegen cooking eggplants directly on six fully jacked–up burners, and then transforming them into his excellent eggplant salad at Sip Sak.

Amanda Freitag creating non-gummy gnocchi with striking delicacy and dexterity at Gusto.

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.


Forget ‘Top Chef,’ Here’s What Real Cooking Looks Like