Connacht Sentinel - Opinion Piece
Celebrity chefs to fore when chips are downJuly 20, 2010 - 7:27am
There was a famous fracas a few years back when that self-proclaimed ‘celebrity chef’ Kevin Thornton had a hissy fit when someone came into his stuck-up restaurant and had the audacity to ask for chips.
Because chips are normally right up there with well-done steaks in terms of the foods these prima donnas of the pots and pans love to hate.
Not Kevin Dundon, however, because he lowered himself to cook chips on the first night of RTE’s new series, Take on the Takeaway, a format that will be familiar to many from its original run as a BBC series a couple of years back.
The idea is simple – you find someone who loves the food from their local takeaway and you try to beat the chipper at its own game; in this case by cooking fish and chips better and quicker than you could get them delivered to your door.
Dundon, himself a familiar face to those with nothing better to do than watch The Afternoon Show, was up against the sizeable bulk of Francesco Macari, a man who looks like he works on the basis of eating one chip for every chip he sells.
His Deli Burger in Balbriggan has been like a second home to Louise Conway, who would order takeaways for delivery three or four times a week.
The idea is that the celebrity chef must buy all of the produce for less than the cost of the takeaway and must cook it quicker than the chipper can deliver it.
Half the points are awarded for speed and the rest for the winner of the blind tasting when the customer wears a blindfold and pretends that eating takeaway chips is actually the basis for a third-level degree.
All of this is overseen by Dr Eva Orsmond, a rather severe looking Finnish GP who doubles as a dietician last seen whipping them into shape on Operation Transformation, and who looks like her staple diet might involve eating her own children.
Eva looks like she’d sooner stick needles in her eyes than ever let a greasy chip past her lips, possessed as she is of a stare than could make you lose weight on the spot through sheer fright.
For more, read this week's Connacht Sentinel.