The Taste launches tonight on Channel 4 and we have a great promo clip for you to mull over this afternoon.
The ten part series is an adaptation of a previous American show and sees the headline grabbing chef Nigella Lawson teaming up with US culinary expert Anthony Bourdain and French cook Ludo Lefebvre as they whittle down 24 contestants to find The Taste’s first UK champion.
The new series goes out on Tuesday each week and every episode will feature a host of imaginative cooking challenges for the hopefuls. Tonight the group will be halved as 24 amateur and professional cooks are asked to serve up small portions of their best dishes. They have to make the flavours count, as all of their creation must fit into a spoon and the panel will each taste just one spoonful of each dish. They will eliminate 12 wannabes at the end of the challenge.
It’s a little like The Voice for cooks and every tasting is done blind, so the experts never know whose food they are eating.
Nigella and the team will take on four contestants each and mentor them through the weekly tasks but the blind element means that once the challenge is underway, any one of the stars could eliminate one of their own team.
Lawson admitted that the format makes things pretty interesting and commented:
“We taste all the food blind, and we have just one mouthful, on a spoon, from each cook. We don’t know who’s cooked what. We have no idea if it’s been cooked by a home cook or a chef or some other catering professional.”
“This continues throughout the whole competition. So you might easily eliminate someone from your own kitchen, someone you’re mentoring. So we really are judging only on the food.”
Anthony insisted that it’s important to pay proper attention to skills when piecing teams and explained:
“It all has to do with how wisely we pick our teams. We’re choosing them based entirely on one mouthful of food from someone we know nothing about. It could have been an incredible mouthful of food that leads us to believe all sorts of things about them that may turn out not to be true at all. But it’s then our job to mentor them, raise them up, guide them through the various elimination challenges.”
Nigella also thinks the one spoon element causes it’s own problems and said:
“And the one mouthful thing means you have to think about food in a slightly different way. If you were cooking someone a meal, as you eat, the flavours develop, and you would not want everything to be turned up too high. When you have one spoonful, you don’t want it to be turned up too high, but on the other hand, you can’t say “Oh yes, they’ll feel the heat by the third spoonful,” because there isn’t a third spoonful, so everything has to be delivered upfront.”
The Taste airs at 9PM, tonight, Channel 4. Watch the preview & leave your comments below….