I can remember the first time I heard that top Celebrity Chef Gordon Ramsay was going to be doing a show about cooking with amateurs. They were going to get a load of “celebrities” and get them to work in a professional kitchen. Gordon Ramsay was not that well known at the time apart from an infamous appearance on the Britain’s most feared Bosses. This was a short sequence at the end of the program where Gordon was seen as the worst offender. He lambasted his staff constantly but, they respected him and put up with it because he was brilliant, and they were all learning so much.
If these thick skinned Comi chefs could take it then surely the rough tough world of stage, screen and sporting achievement that the celebs represented would have no problem dealing with this. As soon as they got near the commercial ovens probably similar to a lincat combi oven like the ones at https://www.247cateringsupplies.co.uk/catering-appliances/commercial-ovens-and-ranges/combination-ovens , they were a bit like rabbits in the headlights. It was two weeks of utter mayhem.
Gordon must have been told by the producers of ITV to make the dishes hard. They had spent a fair bit on the budget kitting out a nice restaurant and employing waiters and waitresses. Gordon had his own head of house running the front and he attempted to marshal the celebrities into some sort of working order in the kitchen. It became clear pretty quickly that some were cut out for a life in catering and others should have stayed on Corrie and the Friday night rock show.
The first starter was Pigeon breast salad. Gordon produced feathered dead Pigeons and showed the celebs how to gut and prepare them. Naturally this did not go down to well with them especially the squeamish Amanda Barrie. Others got stuck in, Edwina Currie was untroubled, and it soon became clear that Jennifer Ellison was going to be in her element. It was too much for Dwain Chambers who walked away in the first week to be replaced by Tommy Vance. He told Amanda Barrie that he had catering experience, to which she cheered. It turned out he meant in the wash up. Roger Cook cut himself so badly on the second day he left for medical treatment never to return. The chocolate souffle was ambitious and it turned into scrambled egg many, many times. The main presenter, Angus Deayton, stayed aloof throughout and Gordon needed the bleep machine more than any other time in tv history.
Other highlights were, Jennifer Ellison’s steak and chunky chips being very good. Gordon apologising to his nemesis Antony Worral-Thompson about poor service, but the highlight had to be Gordon ripping Vic Reeves to pieces after he request two fried eggs on a china plate. It’s on You tube if you fancy a look.