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I'm back in love with Jamie Oliver! We kind of fell out over 'Jamie's Ministry of Food', the TV series tackling obesity in Rotherham, mostly spent patronising fat working-class people in a Northern town because they preferred their chips over tapas, a rather cheap shot from Britain's favourite chef. I'm sure he didn't mean it that way but the people that put the show together probably did.
The whole exercise, at the time, seemed less about helping the people of Britain's fattest city lose weight through healthy eating but more about selling copies of his preceding recipe book for fat people from northern towns. It was a good idea in practice, teaching a small group of people how to cook healthier recipes and then pass it on to more people and hope it balloons up to impressive numbers of healthy eaters across the country. But once the cameras had gone so had the experiment, people preferring to take part just to be on telly rather than be thin. Not surprisingly the pseudo cockney has yet to follow up the series with a visit to a flabby southern town, instead getting as far away as possible from Rotherham by doing a rather enjoyable cooking series in America, Jamie back on form and how we like him..
Oliver likes to act working-class but he's middle-class Essex (if that's possible), kin to a mum and dad who ran a nice cosy country pub near Chelmsford, sending Jamie off to catering college so he could dish up tastier recipes than his old man when he inherited the pub. But it was not to be and Jamie (whose dozy look often makes you think he's in a coma, that bit of dribble lurking on his blubbery lips) had a bit of pukka about him and went on to be very successful, riding the wave of TV cook success as he pushed up his personal fortune up to an impressive £10 million pounds. But in the credit crunch many TV chefs had over extended themselves, Gordon Ramsey's empire now teetering on the edge and the squeaky voiced and irritating Anthony Worrall-Thompson (the world's tallest midget) seeing his bank manager call in the debt.
Jamie has done ok though as he manages to hold onto his core audience of housewives as these shows increasingly become less about the recipe and more about the personalities, the king of them all in Keith Floyd who started of all this TV cook gallivanting all around the world stuff recently dying of cancer. Now that guy was entertaining and patronising. But at least the people of Rotherham would have known that fact from day one and so in on the joke. Jamie, what were you playing at!
Ramsay and Oliver are very similar characters in that they both take their charisma and cooking on the road to the masses, getting their hands dirty with their public so self- perpetuating their appeal, a vanity exercise if the truth be told. Ramsay has a much bigger ego and so the brash and showy 'F Word' is more his territory, mixing with the celebrities so they get to reciprocate and draw on him for publicity. The new F Word series has amalgamated the BBCs 'Restaurant' style approach (playing on the other side right now) after Ramsey came in for some stick over the once excellent Kitchen Nightmares formula for not practicing what he preaches, caught out using precooked ingredients in his swanky restaurants, an absolute no no to the chefs at the restaurants and pubs he tries to sort out, usually earning them a proper bollocking form the now confirmed hypocrite. It's pretty obvious in recession that restaurants have to cut corners and they all use precooked food. At least Jamie has avoided that showbiz crowd and cheating on his cooking. It's also noticeable both Jamie and Ramsay have cut out the swearing in their new series and apparently Ramsay managed just three 'F's last week, down by 146 swear word son this time last year.
Jamie's TV career really took of with the series '15', his apparent altruistic gesture to take troubled kids in off the street and give them a chance of catering career, again pushing his pseudo working-class credentials. But the show was not all that it seemed. The '15' stood for the 15 trainee chefs Jamie took from London's roughest school-leavers to give them a chance of that cooking/catering career in his purpose built restaurant back in 2002. Although it was good TV because the kids were a handful, after the audition process we later learn that just seven of the kids came from iffy backgrounds and we watched as none of them finished the show, the other seven decent kids from catering college and all surviving until the end, making the show proof that there's a reason why these kids messed up in school. It was a bold gesture from Jamie as he claims he put a lot of his own money into the restaurant and experiment, and the fact none of the kids ever got a job at 15 suggest he hedged his bets some with taking on ringers, although it didn't stop him rolling the restaurant chain out in four other locations world-wide. Jamie, whether he will admit or not, used those kids to get publicity to start his restaurant chain. Gordon Ramsay, on the hand, has had to close one of his American restaurants.
Jamie's next project was the healthy eating in schools one, again very admirable but was it more about making his bank balance healthier than the kids? Getting kids to eat greens across the nation was never going to be easy and getting money out of the government for healthier school meals even harder. Blair took the opportunity to cash in on Jamie's altruisms and popularity by appointing him as the school dinners tsar. But the kids were not having any of it as school dinner numbers collapsed in the school where his healthy menus were introduced, working-class parents rebelling in that paradoxical blue-collar way that it may well be good for my kids but I'm not having some southern ponce telling me exactly that and so packing them off with school lunches instead. The new menus were losing the school money (why they don't have them in the first place!) and slowly abandoned the experiment. The vending machines returned, trying to make up the shortfall, all rather ironic, as was the fact New Labour has just announced that child obesity has 'stabilised' in recession, presumably because they want to cut back on school meals budgets. When his scheme was rolled out across the nation the kids just turned their back on Jamie's meals and went to the newsagents to buy crisps and pop like we did as kids to avoid school meals. That was only ever going to happen Jamie. All I remember from school dinners was mashed potato and brown gunge.
Jamie's recent success on TV have been the excellent cooking trips to Italy and America respectively, the learning authentic Italian cooking one especially good and appetizing, Jamie rolling around rustic Italy in his VW camper learning and then making old fashioned Italian style food. The best episode was in Sicily where everyone looked like they were in the Mafia, and probably were, showing him how to correctly chop and splice sausage and vedge. Oww, painful! The American series that has just finished was good too, although cliché and not about the food so much. Here we saw man of the people Jamie, getting down with the brothas in New Orleans and tolerate the rednecks of Georgia, who were less than complimentary to the brothas of New Orleans. Jamie noted that the new levies that are suppose to hold back the next big category 5 storm were the same height as the old ones that were breeched, but failing to draw his driver into any 'them and us comment', what makes Jamie so likeable, clearly a guy without any side to him and so a magnet to mass appeal, we his iron fillings...
I see Jamie Oliver isn't that popular on dooyoo, but I really do like him.
I bought his Italian cook book (Jamies Italy, 2005) after a month touring Italy. I had a few recipe book before then but had never been very interested in cooking. But here was a book with recipes that were easy to follow, using ingrediants that you can actually buy at your local supermarket, and that always turned out good results! His pizza dough is perfect, and for months I would only make pasta fresh! I thoroughly recommend his hand made meatballs too.
I also bought 'Cook With Jamie' and have used it to cook 2 fantastic Christmas dinners. It's a great guide to cooking very ordinary food in unusual ways. It teaches you to dress vegetables like salad and how to make FANTASTIC roast potatoes.
My only complaint is that his writing style is very casual, using terms like 'a bosh of this' and 'a glug of that'. I know why he writes like that but sometimes it can be misenterpreted if you're trying to read quickly and prepare food at the same time.
Of course I have also followed his various tv series. Jamies school dinners was an eye opener and I really enjoyed his most recent series, 'Jamies Ministry of Food' too. He really does try to make a difference, even if his general manner and personality can be a bit annoying to some people!
But it's as a chef, not a do gooder, that I like him first and foremost. Along with Nigella he's the only one i trust to get it right every time.
The Jaime Oliver Flavour Shaker
We all know and love Jamie Oliver, the award winning Naked Chef, star of Jamie's school dinners and successful restaurants, books and cookery programmes.
I am going to review today his Flavour Shaker. If you are not familiar with the Jaime Flavour Shaker it is actually one of his inventions. He modelled it on the process of a traditional pestle and mortar. A pestle and mortar grind ingredients together to make a nice paste or marinade but it a very labour intensive way of mixing, requires quite a bit of strength and makes a lot of mess. The flavour shaker looks quite like a salt and pepper shaker and allows you to put in lots of different ingredients, shake it up with the help of a ceramic ball, and then turns it into a sauce. It has a lid on the top so no mess.
My husband and I received one of these for a wedding present last year and have been using it all the time since. I like the fact that I can add my own fresh ingredients and that I am guaranteed a different flavour and taste every time I use it.
The flavour shaker is sold in most home and cookery stores such as Debenhams and John Lewis etc. A little gimmick they have which I like is that it is sold in a variety of colours so you can mix and match to go with the colour of your kitchen. We have the Cool Blue colour which is see through like the others but it also comes in Red Hot, Olive, Berry, Traditional grey and the special edition stainless steel. The special edition one sells for £30 and the coloured ones are only £20.
Jaime includes a how to use/recipe booklet with each flavour shaker. There are four easy steps on the back which make it very easy to follow and very easy to use. The steps are as follows:
1. Add ingredients and drop in ceramic ball
2. Screw the two halves together securely. Ensure top and bottom arrows are aligned.
3. Give it a good shake but look in to see how you're doing.
4. Unscrew and scoop with the Flavour Scoop or pour straight onto your food or rub in to get that full flavour.
The other great thing about the Flavour Shaker is that it can go in the dishwasher so it's extremely easy to clean.
The leaflet also gives a few recipes to get you started such as rustic French rub, basil balsamic vinegar and pine nut dressing and sesame marinade. We used these in the beginning and do still use them now and again but once we got used to what works and we felt more comfortable we really like to experiment with different ingredients and flavours. I think that is actually half the fun of this product, mixing things up, making your own sauces and having fun in the kitchen.
If you would like more information there is a website dedicated entirely to the flavour shaker, www.flavourshaker.co.uk
I can't stand the man, cannot stand the man!!!
I think everyone knows who he is? He's a 30-something blonde headed chef with big lips and bad morals. Who reffers to himself as the naked chef (I wonder why??)
My dislike of Jamie stems from that one incident in Italy when he slit a fully concious lambs throat.
He was out there filming Jamies Great Escape, he was living with a family who asked him to kill the lamb, at first Oliver was saying 'Oh no govnor, not me I dunno how'ter'. Having said that he still plucked the terrifed lamb from her family, shoved a bag over her head held her upside down by her legs and slit her throat, all while she was still fully concious.
When he was criticised he said 'I know it's a lovely animal but they taste lovely, so you know?'
My opinion on this, as I'm sure you've probably gathered is that there are NO excuses for doing this, how dare he? how could he?. I just feel for the poor lamb I genuinly do not know how a person could hurt such a harmless beautiful creature and realise it's worst fear. What did the lamb do to deserve that? Sheep never do anything wrong and that's how he treats them?? disgusting!
I hope the he realises the error of his ways! That's about all I have to say about him!
i am the only person who doesnt like jamie oliver? - Advantages: great cook, apprently, hes never cooked for me!, he did pull a cracking stunt with Jeremy Clarkson - Disadvantages: he looks like a spitting image puppet, rubber faced freak!, he makes me feel inadequate as a girl who cant cook!
Jamie Oliver is one of our (well Becky not really Emma?s) idols. He is such an amazing guy with a great sense of humour and what all girls love ? he?s a guy who can cook! From the beginning of his career as the naked chef (hmmm?.if only!) I have loved him. He has such a casual attitude to cooking it looks so easy. He dresses so well with a look that makes him appear to have taken about 10minutes to get ready but still better than other blokes who take about 2 hours. To begin with when I found out that Jamie was getting married my heart sunk. I was gutted for a while then I realized he has a right to be happy and it is probably for the best! He married Joules some time in the last few years I think. She is very pretty and I think they make a great couple (see I am not bitter at all!) He now also has to lovely children ? Poppy Honey and Daisy Boo. A little story which you might not know is that there two second names come from the nicknames which Joules and Jamie have for each other. I?m not sure which order it goes in but I reckon Joules probably calls Jamie ?Boo? and Jamie calls Joules ?Honey? ? so sweet!! Jamie also shows his sensitive side by helping unfortunate adults to get a job and sort out their lives. This is what happened in his TV program ?Jamie?s Kitchen?. It was great to watch as he trained the 15 students to be professional chefs in his new restaurant ?Fifteen?. I recorded every episode and I really admired Jamie?s patience and understanding with the adults as he became great friends with them, being very tolerate and seeing things from there point of view- something I wouldn?t be able to do!! I also have Jamie?s calendar on my wall. It is very good with pictures of him looking very nice on and even recipe ideas down the side. Jamie has also added many of his own entries included when he was conceived at the end of some pier!! I also own all his books. These are great too read with easy to do recipes and lovely pictures of him and hi
s family to keep you interested as you go along!! I have made a few of the recipes and they tasted very nice, I even cooked one of them with a friend for a party of people one night ? and it was a success! I would of course love it more if he personally cooked for me although I guess this isn?t likely to happen! Jamie is quite a traveled guy who has cooked for many celebs, including the Queen and Mr Tony Blair! I don?t know about you lot but I feel proud having him represent our countries cooking skills!!
Because of a problem with my mum and her man friend selling cocaine and stolen goods and now being in prison Iam now living all by myself so I must get all of my own food But I did have a really good Idea to watch the telli for some really good ideas of some food I have been watching a boy called jamie oliver and he is a cook on the telli what is also a good thing is that to get ladies to watch the programme it is called naked chef but he is not naked and you donot get to see his penis which I donot really want to see while iam cooking I like to make chicken curry like the cook does but he is a bit quick for me so I set the video to watch it later when I have got the ingredients to make the food I do like the food that he does make because it looks really good and his friends thatg coem over say that it is all nice but I do think that sometimes he can be a bit silly What I did was invite my friend and his girlfreind around for some tea just like jamie oliver does and I made for them chicken curry with some rice and a pie and we had some wine and some cola When I was watching jamie oliver make the chicken curry I was copying what he was doing so I would get it the same but it made me a bit dizzy because there is some jogging around by the cameras on the telli Then when my friend and his girlfreind come to eat over like on the telli they both said that the food was smashing and wanted to know where I got the idea from and I said jamie oliver and my friend called him a dozey twonk but I donot know what that means I saw jamie oliver do a advert for sainsburys and that is where I got the food from to make my curry which is really good The pie was rubbish