Top 5 Food Inspired Moments in Television
"Gettin' ripshit on ham."
Photo by Mike King & Brooke Viggiano
Food and television. My two favorite things in life. I mean, besides family and friends, of course. Anyway, some of the greatest scenes in television are based around food, as evidenced by this season's rum-ham filled It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia episode. Feeling inspired myself, I made a list of my top 5 favorite food-inspired moments in TV.
5. The Moist Maker from Friends Sandwiches are just the greatest ever. And sandwiches made with leftovers? Even better. Monica took a Thanksgiving holiday classic, the leftover turkey sandwich, to a new level by adding an extra gravy-soaked slice of bread between the layers of roast turkey. Ross dubbed it "The Moist Maker," and a new classic was born. When Ross's beloved Moist Maker is stolen from the fridge at work, he nearly loses his mind (and rightfully so - they had me at extra gravy).
4. The Good Morning Burger from The Simpsons Just a short snippet on the long-running iconic show, The Good Morning Burger was featured on a television commercial that Lisa and Homer were watching. The voiceover exclaimed, "We take 18 ounces of sizzling ground beef, and soak it in rich, creamery butter, then we top it off with bacon, ham, and a fried egg. We call it The Good Morning Burger."
The out-of-shape Homer literally drools over the commercial, leading a worried Lisa to convince him to diet through use of audio cassettes that promise you'll "lose weight while you sleep." It doesn't work for Homer (Marge bought vocabulary building cassette tapes by mistake), but if it did, I'd give it a try for a bite of that mammoth burger. The concept was rare when the episode aired in the early '90s, but these days, the fried egg and burger combo can be found almost anywhere. In Houston alone, we have places like Christian's Tailgate, The Burger Palace, and The Burger Guys serving up their own egg-topped creations. They aren't 18 ounces and soaked in butter, but they are probably just as good (and just as bad for you).
3. Health Food Products on The Biggest Loser Okay, this encompasses more than just one television moment, but I wanted to switch gears to something a bit healthier. The Biggest Loser helps expose the nation to a more responsible lifestyle trend -- healthy eating and exercise. Crazy, right? Never thought of that. In every single episode, the show boasts brands like Jennie-O and Subway like they are getting paid (oh, wait...).
I'm a fan of Jennie-O's turkey sausage and ground turkey meat myself; I use them both in a lot of my cooking (checks can be made out to Brooke Viggiano). Though slightly annoying, the product endorsing scenes are a bit hilarious. Clearly, none of these people can act. "Hey Sally, you need a pre-workout snack? Try Yoplait's new skinny bitch sugar-free ultra-energizing on-the-go yogurt snack pack." (Trainer holds yogurt in shot. Cue camera one. Zoom to skinny bitch yogurt. Zoom to contestant's smile). The 2,300 product plugs are a bit over the top, but the message behind the show is still a good one.
And now, a word from our sponsor.
2. Cheesy Blasters from 30 Rock I don't know who Meat Cat is or where he's flying on his magic skateboard, but Cheesy Blasters sound awful and oddly intriguing at the same time. To get more in tune with their mainstream audience, the TGS crew visits Season Four, the "#1 Asian fusion restaurant in New York, to have a taste of Cheesy Blasters, the "#1 selling food in the rest of America." Liz Lemon explains the gluttonous treat (eaten with chopsticks, obviously) to her coworkers through way of song: "You take a hot dog, stuff it with some jack cheese, fold it in a pizza...You got cheesy blasters." Tracy Jordan refuses to take part, as he is "a foodie." Apparently, others feel differently and have even given Cheesy Blasters a try at home.
And finally, my all time favorite food inspired television moment (as mentioned in the intro).
1. Rum ham from It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia Let me first start off by saying that I could have made this entire list about Always Sunny. It is my favorite show ever, with everything from Charlie's milk steak "boiled over hard" to the infamous wine in a can (which I've tried and is glorious). I would follow the gang to the grave. I'm not proud of it, but I've even salted a person (I mean, nobody likes doing it, but really, she gave me no choice).
Now, back to the rum ham, not to be confused with a rum-glazed ham. This is in fact a ham, roasted and soaked entirely in rum. When the gang visits the Jersey Shore, Frank is in charge of getting the liquor for himself and Mac. Never one to miss the opportunity to incorporate food, Frank opted for a rum ham, as it is "loaded in booze." Fresh off my Always Sunny high, I made one this past weekend. And let me tell you, "90 proof ham" is as repulsive as it sounds - maybe even worse if that's possible. But the picture alone is worth the $50 dollars I spent on this awful, awful joke - right? I think so. Buyers beware; my fiancé claims he got a slight buzz, but another patron partaking in the rum ham feast did not do so well. I may or may not have ruined his Saturday night. Sorry, Mike.
What are your favorite food moments in television?
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