Chopped vs. the Chopping Block

Have any of you been watching the new food reality shows? If so, you probably prefer one over the other. They are different animals indeed!

For me, it’s about the food, not the drama. Since my favorite food show, Top Chef is in between seasons, I’ve been watching these two relative newcomers to the arena of food competition shows. Chopped and The Chopping Block.

Only a handful of episodes in to this first season and already I’ve given up on the Chopping Block on account of the show’s focus on creating drama, as opposed to creating good food. Contestants are put in ridiculous boiler pot situations where they have way too few people, to cook for and serve way too many people. This results in failure, frustration, bickering and drama. I guess the NBC folks figured the more drama the better, but as a foodie, not a reality show junkie, the drama is what’s keeping me from enjoying the show.

Plus, is it me, or are half of the characters unlikable? I know there are always a few baddies in the bunch to keep things interesting, whether this is a real reflection of their personalities, or due to carte blanche editing, but in this first season of the Chopping Block, I’ve been having a hard time rooting for anyone. Be nice to eachother, chefs!

On the other hand, Chopped is quickly becoming a favorite new show. A few reasons:

1. The focus is on cooking good food, and creativity. Not drama.

2. Chefs are given 4 ingredients to use as the base of their meal. And one of them is always a little weird. Keeps things interesting!

3. Each week, four new contestants. Three different courses. I like this consistency.

4. Ted Allen is a cutie!

Ted Allen c/o The Food Network

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            5 Program(s) Found
            • Alumni have appeared in reality competition shows such as Top Chef and Project Runway.
            • Has a team of about 4,000 faculty members focused on helping students tap opportunities in a marketplace driven by ideas.
            • Offers programs in design, media arts, fashion, and culinary.
            • Provides program coordinators who work with students to ensure they have the learning materials, assignments, facilities, and faculty to get the most out of the program.
            • Over 50 campus locations nationwide.
            Good for Working Adults
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            5 Program(s) Found
            • Hands-on culinary education with focused attention on each student
            • An ACCSC School of Excellence with multiple “Best Vocational Cooking School” awards*
            • 15,000 graduates, including celebrities like Bobby Flay, David Chang, and Christina Tosi*
            • Programs in Culinary Entrepreneurship, Professional Culinary Arts, Professional Pastry Arts, and much more
            • Campuses in New York and Silicon Valley with nearby housing available
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            5 Program(s) Found
            • Received the 2015 and 2013 “Cooking School of the Year” Award of Excellence from the International Association of Culinary Professionals (IACP).
            • Accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC).
            • Externship opportunities are available at numerous famous New York City restaurants.
            • Campus is located near downtown Manhattan, within walking distance of many popular attractions such as the Radio City Music Hall.
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            Good for Working Adults
            • Flexible Scheduling
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            2 Program(s) Found
            • Ranked among the Best Colleges in the South in 2015 by U.S. News and World Report.
            • Ranked the 13th  Best College for Veterans in 2015 by U.S. News and World Report.
            • A private institution founded in 1977 with a current total undergraduate enrollment of over 15,00.
            • Its student-faculty ratio is 12:1, and 89.3% of classes have fewer than 20 students.
            • Has students attend one class at a time to ensure easy access to faculty and a more hands-on education.
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            4 Program(s) Found
            Auguste Escoffier Schools of Culinary Arts , Online (campus option available)
            • Culinary Arts program includes the 3-week Farm To Table® Experience, where students gain a direct, in-depth look at where food comes from.
            • Numerous scholarship opportunities and financial aid are available to students who qualify.
            • Accreditation from the Accrediting Council for Continuing Education and Training (ACCET), and the Council on Occupational Education (COE).
            • 2 campuses located in Boulder, Colorado and Austin, Texas.
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            Good for Working Adults
            • Online Courses
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            2 Program(s) Found
            L'Ecole Culinaire , Saint Louis
            • Offers educational opportunities for the aspiring, career-minded chef.
            • Students are trained by professional chefs and spend the majority of their final term working in the campus restaurant to learn all phases of the culinary industry.
            • St. Louis campus offers new Food Truck Entrepreneurship courses.
            • Has a student-run food truck that tours around St. Louis.
            • All campuses have a public restaurant where food is prepared and served by students.
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            Good for Working Adults
            • Flexible Scheduling
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            • Transferable Credits
            1 Program(s) Found

            Lackawanna College is the premier, private, accredited two-year college serving the people of northeastern Pennsylvania. With a focus on keeping higher education affordable and accessible to our immediate community, Lackawanna draws 80 percent of its student population right from our own region.

            With a main campus situated in downtown Scranton, Lackawanna’s expanding footprint also includes satellite centers in Hawley, Hazleton, New Milford, and Towanda.