Colin McEnroe Show: What's For Dinner?

The state of eating and cooking in America.

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Chris Prosperi's Chicken Coq au vin.
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Chris Prosperi.
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Chion Wolf
Chion Wolf
Spiderdogs!
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Chion Wolf
Spinach, garlic & sprouts.
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Chion Wolf
Chion Wolf
Black beans!
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Chicken, pesto, mozarella.
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Chion Wolf
Chion Wolf
Chion Wolf
Mac & Cheese.
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Pepper-rubbed filet mignon at Barcelona Restaurant, West Hartford, CT.
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Cebollas!
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Chion Wolf
Chion Wolf
Chion Wolf
Chion Wolf
Chion Wolf
Black beans, cheese, peppers, onions, and spices.
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Colin McEnroe Show: What's For Dinner?
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Colin McEnroe Show: What's For Dinner?

In 2009 I moderated a Connecticut Forum panel of chefs made famous by television and radio. When word got out that I was doing this, I was approached by people who wanted -- really wanted -- to meet a particular chef. Sometimes it was Duff Goldman from the TV Show "Ace of Cakes." Sometimes it was Anthony Bourdain or Alice Waters.

Whoever it was, the fans were a little crazed. And I didn't get the feeling the Goldman fans were making cakes all the time. You may have a screaming need to meet LeBron James. That doesn't mean you play basketball, anymore than you have to play guitar to want to meet Bruce Springsteen. It was like that. These people were food fans on a purely spectator-consumer basis. Something was going on that I didn't quite understand.

I cook from scratch five or six nights a week, but I don't watch those shows. They'd cut into my cooking time. We explore the disconnect in American eating on today's show.

Leave your comments below, e-mail colin@wnpr.org or Tweet us @wnprcolin.


  

Comments

EMAIL FROM SARA:

Great topic-food is our Switzerland, regardless of our cultural, political or any other 'al differences, our love of butter unites us as a people. We are one nation under Paula Deen with creme fraiche and panko for all. I like the new shows on Food Network like "The Best thing I ever Ate" or shows that just follow some young guy (Duff, Guy Fieti, Tom whoever he is ) as they go from restaurant to restaurant consuming dangerous portions of transfatty food and looking intensely into the camera, face shiny from grease and sweat, moaning and using decadent adjectives to share a very intimate moment with the viewers. I always need a smoke and shower following the money shot at the end of the show. (The money shot is that moment when the host fills his mouth with whatever food he has been romancing and no longer makes words but rather rolls his eyes back into his head and manages to give us a thumbs up.)

EMAIL FROM AMY:

As a mom with young kids, I would SOOOOO love a drive thru at grocery stores for the basics--milk, oj, deli meats.
I love Stop & Shop's hand scanner thingy, makes it go faster.

Cooking most days takes a lot of work and time, and with kids and work, it often doesn't happen.

What about pre made meal places like Dream Dinners (a franchise)?

EMAIL FROM MATT:

Matt in Bristol, here.
I love to cook and have thought deeply about becoming a chef many times but I’m afraid it’ll just take all the fun out of cooking.
But about your sandwich anecdotes: every time I leave the house with one of my creations between 2 slices, someone in amazement of the ingredients and size of the thing inevitably asks where I bought it.

EMAIL FROM RENEE:

Hi Colin,
Caught most of your show and just wanted to share my annoyance at the idea that not having enough time is an excuse. I myself do not spend three hours in the evening watching TV. I am a vegetarian comitted to providing my family with mostly organic meals. I am also the mother of an 18 month old who demands my constant attention and my husband and I both work full time. On weekends I do my best to make 3 different things that we can eat over and over throughout the work week. Weeknight meals consist of 15 minutes of re-heating veggie burgers or casseroles, and there are a lot of organic vegetarian convienience foods out there. By the time I am finsihed with dinner, bath, bedtime, dishes, and packing her snacks and our lunches, it is 9:00 and I spend thirty minutes watching TV before passing out.

I think politics plays a role in the way my family eats. If I did not have to maintain a fulltime job so that my family has health insurance (my husband is self-employed), weeknight meal-prep would be much easier. If quality childcare didn't cost as much as my mortgage, perhaps I could afford to work part time, but fees are structured so that part time childcare works out to only a $40/week savings and doesn't equal the income lost by working part time and buying our own insurance.

I would love for you guys to do a show on the cost of quality childcare in CT. I also work for birth to three and have visited some pretty terrible daycares. I have relatives in Canada that pay $50/month for quality government run and regulated childcare. We think of daycare workers as one step above fast food jobs, but many of our children spend more time with these people than they do with us!