Young and Hungry

Huff Post’s Cowles Takes a Swipe at Food Network Chefs

Giada: Fit to be wrapped in foil

Talk about shooting fish in a barrel — or farm-raised salmon in their pens. Huffington Post's sustainable/organic hawk Isabel Cowles goes after a trio Food Network celebrity chefs, hoping to point out their anti-environmental ways and, of course, rack up some easy page views along the way.

Cowles attacks Giada de Laurentiis for wasting aluminum foil, Guy Fieri for encouraging excessive meat-eating, and Sandra Lee for being....well, a lousy cook and relying on pre-packaged products. Here's Cowles' closing kick in the teeth:

The image these chefs are creating of our country's food ethos and practices wreaks of wastefulness, over-indulgence and laziness. The Food Network and its celebrity chefs should inspire Americans to savor quality food and the entire process of making a meal–from good food choices, to mise en place, to clean up. It's a shame that these chefs don't use their popularity to truly help improve how Americans cook and eat.


First of all, every home cooks knows you don't have to use foil. Grease the pan. Use a Silpat. Don't use anything and scrub that pan later. Second, what exactly is Cowles implying with her slap at Fieri (which she spells as "Ferari" in the first reference; talk about lazy, shall we)? That every cook/chef on the Food Network should offer only non-meat or limited-meat recipes? Do you really want to encourage a culinary Group Think, Isabel? Let people have choices; they're smart enough to figure out.

Third, you're dead right about Lee. She's an embarrassment. This is a well-crafted argument against Lee's half-baked approach to cooking:

What Lee is doing is not really cooking... it's arranging. Unfortunately, the vast majority of the food she puts together comes wrapped in soon-to-be-waste. Chopping your own tomatoes, cutting your own lettuce and mashing your own avocados would save a bundle, not to mention a quite a few bottles, bags and containers. Multiply all of that packaging by Lee's national audience, and you've got a lot of unnecessary garbage.

I'd recommend we send in a surgical attack team and take her out.

By the way, Y&H is hoping for some easy page views for his half-baked pot shot at Cowles.

Photo courtesy of

  • Paul Ward

    So, Giada uses too much aluminum foil? THIS IS A CRITIQUE OF A COOK?

    Giada, come here with that Reynolds Wrap.

  • Daniel

    I would think you'll get some page views for the nice Giada cleavage shot...

  • Giardia DiChef

    Since leaving comments on Isabel's four-year-old HuffPo article is disabled, I guess I have to leave it here that she doesn't know how to use "wreak" correctly. "Wreak" means to cause or inflict. Reek means stinky or unpleasant smelling.

    If she means that these chefs cause or inflict wastefulness, then she need to remove the "of" preposition, as in the trite "wreak havoc". If she means that these chefs smell, even metaphorically, of wastefulness, laziness, and over-indulgence (which I think is her intention), then she needs to use "reek" with the preposition.

    Not to nit-pick, but if a writer like Isabel is going to take a high-and-mighty position, it would be good not to undermine her argument by being equally lazy about proofreading.

  • Konrad

    I am sure the writers of this article didn't have anything really damming to say about Giada. I think her cooking is brillant and find no fault with her or her cooking. It is very plain to see she is beautiful and can motivate anyone to read the story bearing her picture.
    I did.
    Hey Giada, I love to cook, any time you need some new ideas or recipes please email me.