Justin Adelman is a senior at the University of Vermont studying Public Communications. On his blog, Not So TV Dinner, he writes about how food and cooking are falsely portrayed on TV.
“Cooking Up a Story” is an online TV show & blog about food and sustainable living. I was shocked. Sustainable living? How is it that this online TV show is more up with the times than the Food Network or Cooking Channel? For once I found a TV show that focused on local ingredients, family farmers and sustainability rather than back-to-basics, 30-minutes and semi-homemade. The description of “Cooking Up a Story” reads as follows: “Cooking Up a Story is a show about people, food and sustainable living. Each episode portrays the passion of family farmers, artisan producers, and a diverse range of everyday people whose lives center on food, and sustainable living. These personal stories are told in the voice of the subject, without a prepared script, and filmed in their native surroundings to bring people behind our food to life.”
Why is there a lack of food TV programming aimed at sustainable living and food creation? I think the Food Network is a little behind in the “going green” movement. No sets, no scripts, no food magic just people who have a passion for sustainable living and food. From “wild and cultivated mushrooms” to “cooking catfish and hush puppies southern style” this TV show is redefining what it means to cook. Nothing fancy, no KitchenAid appliances or complex kitchen utensils, just passionate people who love to cook, care about their local food, local ingredients and the environment.
I think it’s important to have programming representing these values and lifestyles. I feel like these are overlooked a lot in food production and food entertainment. Sustainability, family farmers and local ingredients are important factors in what should be represented in cooking shows. “Cooking Up a Story” is taking steps to change that. This new, innovative online TV show should be used as inspiration to motivate home chefs and food fanatics to reach out to local food producers, find local ingredients and to cook sustainably. So let’s take out the old and bring in the new. Cooking sustainably is just a better way to cook. I challenge all of you to change it up and cook for your own self-fulfillment while reaching out to local farmers growing fresh, delicious produce or artisan producers crafting the heartiest bread or creamiest cheeses.
Keep it simple, keep it fresh, keep it sustainable.