>> Good morning. I want to thank all of you for
coming. We’re so excited today to be here with the Food Network and with Alton Brown
celebrating an early Thanksgiving, and talking about some of what we’ve been introducing
on iGoogle in terms of our food themes and food gadgets. And I just want to offer a little
bit of reflection on the Web and how it has affected cooking and then I’ll turn over
the show to Alton. If you think about what the Web has done in terms of cooking, it really
has changed things. As recently as 10 years ago, if you think about how you would exchange
recipes, they would have been flour-covered recipe cards that looked like this or you
begging your grandmother for that secret recipe. And now, today, the Web helps us find and
organize recipes and explore food in entirely new ways. One thing that we see is we can
tell that people have moved in their food interest online. This is the Google trends
graph for recipes, and you can see that it has been increasing over time—-and, in fact,
we get a big seasonal spike every year around Thanksgiving and Christmas as people find
holiday recipes for entertaining. We also, as you can see, this is the search for Food
Network-—our partner today—-we’ve been getting more and more queries over time as
people turn to their web more frequently to find what they are looking for in terms of
what to cook and what to be inspired by in terms of food. So, I’m really excited about
this overall trend. And we’ve built different features into the search engine to try and
make cooking easier, so, even things like our calculator and conversion–a tool that
we have in the search engine. So, for example, if you want to convert from metric or from
one measurement to another, you can type things like five teaspoons and find out how many
milliliters that is or you can find out how many tablespoons are in a cup by simply typing
these things into Google and getting the conversions on the top of the page. Google Image Search,
we have found has been a great inspiration for people, especially if they entertain.
So, this is an example of search for Thanksgiving table settings. If you are looking at how
you should entertain, how you should set up the table, how to inspire your family and
friends that you are hosting, we got a great set of images, and Google Image Search is
a great tool for that. We also have Google Book Search, which has tons of cookbooks,
including dozens of cookbooks from our partner today, the Food Network. So, we’re really
excited about the fact that people can search not only for web pages but also books online
to help them find recipes. And, of course, YouTube, because of the demonstration nature,
is just a really, really great opportunity for people to log on, find videos and see
demonstration of how to make some of their favorite dishes. So, without further ado,
I want to turn to the iGoogle announcements for today because they’re very, very exciting.
As you know, we’ve been having a series of artist themes where we release a set of
theme each quarter that focus on different artists and designers. And this quarter, we’re
focused on art–food as art, and, so, all of the themes are just unbelievably beautiful
and scrumptious pictures of food and things that are food-inspired. And we also have an
amazing set of gadgets. So, today, we’ll be introducing a set of food-inspired gadgets
that include gadgets from a company called Foodzie, which allows you to sell your food
and baked goods online—-basically setting up your own boutique bakeshop. Also, Urbanspoon,
which helps you find and experience new restaurants in your community. There’s also Supercook,
where you can introduce what ingredients you have in your fridge and it finds recipes that
you can make with those ingredients. It is helping you get to use all the different elements
of your refrigerator. And we have great perspectives also in the gadgets from Rachel Ray, Martha
Stewart, the Food Network, Epicurious talking about some of the favorite things, some of
the new trends in food, all these really wonderful food gadgets to really help enrich your iGoogle
home page. And then, of course, we have the themes–and the themes are mouthwateringly
beautiful. So, of course, we have themes from the Food Network. The Food Network provides
food programming into more than 90 million homes. And they have set up two different
themes–one, which is a savory themes for holiday cooking, so you can see all the beautiful
spreads of the holiday food that they have on their site and on their television programs.
And my–one of my favorite themes, which is The 12 Days of Cookies, so, you can see all
the Christmas cookies and that they have recipes and some of their favorite spreads of cookies
as we really get into that holiday spirit. Paula Deen, the talk show host and author
who is really focused on southern comfort food, shows how she entertains for the holidays.
We are both showing you her Thanksgiving spread; and she also has her holiday treats theme
where you can see some of the different creations she has, including her snowman there on the
top. And then there’s just amazing food artwork. Carl Warner is known of making all
of his art entirely out of food. So, all of these pictures that you see there, they’re
all made out of food. Carl has a book coming out next year where he’s going to talk about
the inspiration behind his food-based art. We also have James Parker, who is the world
leading fruit and veggies sculptor. In fact, he is the reigning champion of the Fantasy
Fruit Sculpture Program for the Food Network. You even can’t even believe that these things
were carved from simple fruits and vegetables. They’re just so, so beautiful. And then,
of course, we have different baked goods. So, Crumbs Bake Shop, which now has 20 stores
around the country, each of which has 50 different varieties of cupcakes each day. If you want
to get your cupcake fixed, well, you can load up the Crumbs’ theme. Ron Ben-Israel, the
king of cakes, voted best baker by Vogue magazine and a frequent guest on Martha Stewart, Oprah,
and David Letterman, he has his cakes here. Everything on Ron’s cakes are edible–so,
the flowers, the stems, the ribbons are all in entirely edible–so, amazing, amazing art
from Ron Ben-Israel. And Emeril Lagasse, who really needs no introduction—-a famous restaurateur,
amazing personality–has inspired us with pictures of his restaurant, pictures behind
the scenes from the kitchen as well as pictures from his food. Wine Spectator, for the wine
lovers out there, has shared with us the beautiful, beautiful pictures they’ve taken of vineyards
from all over the world, just breathtaking landscape of where the wine, grapes are grown
and produced. And we have Jamie Oliver, also know as the Naked Chef, he’s provided us
with a series of themes that are inspired for his good eating and healthy eating that
he supports and promotes. Magnolia Bakery, the bakery that kicked off the cupcake craze
is here. They kicked off the craze with Sex and the City and SNL’s Lazy Sunday’s skit.
If you can’t get enough of the 12-day limit in the New York area, you can actually log
on now and get Magnolias cupcakes right on your homepage. Cat Cora, the very first female
Iron Chef, has provided us with beautiful pictures of her food creations to inspire
your homepage. And Alain Ducasse, the three-Michelin star chef who now runs the Jules Verne Restaurant
in the Eiffel Tower is here with pictures of the amazing restaurant atmospheres that
he’s created as well as his food creations. Claire Robinson is known for cooking things
with just five simple ingredients. And so she has laid out her themes. You can see them
here. She has laid them out in this really cool way where you can actually see the five
ingredients numbered and then see the dish that she made with those five simple things.
Sylvia Weinstock, the reigning queen of cakes, who has been deemed by InStyle to be the diva
of cakes, shows many of her amazing, amazing cake creations on her themes. Gary Danko,
winner of the 2000 James Beard Award for Best New Restaurant and local restaurant here in
San Francisco, has joined our themes collection with pictures of his restaurant and his food.
We also have Michael Mina, who now owns 17 different restaurants and has three Michelin
Star to his name, has shown us pictures of his creation. And then we have the international
component. Peter Gordon is a popular restaurateur in both the U.K. and in New Zealand, and he
has joined to show us his recipes and some of his favorite presentations of food. We
also have Ian Huey Hewitson, one of the most famous chefs and most famous food personalities
in Australia—-here, showing the amazing things you can create with the exotic ingredients
from Australia. And Martin Yan from Yan Can Cook, Martin is a Chinese-born American who
hosts the show Yan Can Cook, has written over two dozen cookbooks, he shows you here his
Asian-inspired recipes. And then last but certainly not the least, we have Alton Brown,
who is the creator of Good Eats, he also has–is the host of the mini series Feasting on Asphalt
and Feasting on Waves, and is the main commentator on Iron Chef America, and you can see his
amazing kitchen, his personality conveyed with the themes and the amazing food that
creates. And we’re really, really, excited to have Alton here with us today. I’d like
to welcome him to the stage. He is going to give us a talk around the 10 things he’s
found to be true about foods. Welcome, Alton.>>BROWN: Thank you. Hi. Thank you. I am so
glad to be able to have this many people skip work while being at work. So, everybody is
going to get paid. So, if there are any particular, you know, if I can help you miss an important
meeting by talking longer, I’m going to do that. We’ll just–every 15 minutes or
so, I’ll asks who wants to stay longer until you miss that critical deadline that you are
supposed to do. It’s a pleasure to be here. My first time, I’m pretty–this is almost
as big as Good Eats Industries. I think we’ve got three more buildings than you have, but
that’s okay. You’re a growing company. You’re young. You got time to catch up.
We’ve only got 60 buildings. You probably have more than that. Anyway, you just don’t
know it yet. You’re growing them. I know that I’m here primarily to talk about Thanksgiving
because of this relationship that we have with you guys. The reason that I’m here
is because of search hits and whatnot that have come up because of me and Thanksgiving
and Food Network and Thanksgiving. So I thought, well, if I’m going to come and do a talk
here, why not come with questions that have come to me via e-mail—-not just female,
but all of them that have come through your e-mail to me during the last few months. And
we get pummeled with e-mails before the holiday season, specifically Thanksgiving. So I decided
to come in and do a little talk based on answering some of the questions that I’ve gotten just
in the last couple of weeks and using only, only images that—-well, I took a few of
these at home, some came from the shows, but the rest I ripped off directly from image
search on Google, so, I hope that’s okay—-which I don’t feel really bad about coming here.
I might apologize for that in a lot of places, but not here. I’m not going to worry about
it. So, I’m going to go over these questions and answer them and then, hopefully, we’re
going to have—-we got microphones set up so that we can do some of your questions.
And I also want to say that at any given time if you want to stand up and holler out a question,
go ahead. Just be sure to set down your computer first because I know at least three quarters
of you have your laptops running. Why? I’m not really sure. It kind of worries me. Anyway,
it’s just that I’ve never come to a place where so many people are watching TV in their
lap at the same time. So, this is right–this actually came in just three days ago. Question:
In our house, Romancing The Bird—-Romancing The Bird was the first one-hour special that
we did 10 years ago, 11 years, 10 years ago on Good Eats, our first big Thanksgiving show,
it still comes on now. I’m happy to say, most of the images you saw up here a few minutes
ago were from that–and the reason you can tell is I had a lot more hair. I had twice
as much hair as I have now. In our house, Romancing The Bird is classic, like A Charlie
Brown Thanksgiving, to what do you attribute its considerable success? Well, I hadn’t
really thought about it because I haven’t looked at the show in a lot of years, so,
I decided to go back and I pulled some of the things, some frames from this particular
special. But I think pretty much to give a good explanation for why the show is so good
and popular, one, drool-inducing poultry. This is a darn–of course, this was low-res.
This is where–we were analog back then, so, you know, we–you know, it looks really crappy
because it’s, you know, DV, you know, so. Drool-inducing poultry would be one. Cooking
blind, how many shows that you know of where you actually get to see an entire cooking
sequences done while blind-folded? You just don’t typically see that because when you’re
blind and you cook, you typically get burned and cut your self a great deal. So, we were
the first to break out and do cooking blind. Snappy graphics, we’ve always–we’ve always
been big on high-end technical graphics–only the really wide markers on cardboard that
give you a headache but also give you, you know, the rush at the same time, so use this.
This next one though, I’m thinking, has a lot more to do with it. Custom props, the
front of–how many of you have seen the show, probably couple of you, the cool ones, yeah–this
was a turkey we made for the front of a turkey delivery van made almost completely out of
toilet parts. You probably didn’t want to know that. But the really important thing
is that we were absolutely the first show to feature cross-dressing transvestites in
a food show, and I think that we still reign as being the only show to do that. So, we’ve
got that going for us. Next question–and these are real, so, any–yes, she’s with
the grammar, don’t blame me. Alton, I want to try to do three things this Thanksgiving–deep
fry a turkey, not burn down the house, and end up with good eats. I know you can help
me. Will you, please? Sure, I’m more than happy to do that. First step, of course, is
that brining is always in fashion. How many folks here have actually brined a turkey at
some point? Again, the cool ones. Notice the ones that had watched the show. And did anybody
have a brine turkey not turn out to be the best turkey they ever had? Okay, good, because
I would have security take you out. That’s good. I like that. Okay. So, obviously, if
you’re going to fry a bird, whether you’re going to roast a bird or fry a bird, brine
first, okay. That’s your best flavor bet because brining increases the moisture level
inside the bird, seasons the inside of the bird and also makes slight changes to the
molecular structures so that when you cook it, you don’t lose as much moisture when
you cook it, so, that even if you do overcooked it, you tend to hold down more moisture than
if you didn’t brine. Got it? Good. Okay, next thing. You use a turkey derrick. Of course,
this is from our Fry Turkey Fry Show. This device allows you to raise and lower the turkey
into the hot vat of oil in complete safety by maintaining a distance over there. And,
of course, the flashing danger beacon on top, an important accessory. I’m thinking of
selling this in a kit maybe just through Google. We can talk maybe about that, you know, once
you guys are a bigger company. In the end, we do want to avoid the fire and a turkey
derrick helps you, too, to avoid that. I don’t know how many of you guys saw this, but all
we did was drop a frozen turkey into a pot of 400-degree oil, and this is what happens.
And I know what you’re thinking. It looks fun. And I don’t blame you for that ‘cause
I’ll tell you, it is. It is fun, but the clean up stinks. Okay, so, if you are going
to blow up a turkey, I suggest doing it in a neighbors’ yard when they’re not home.
And it makes interesting patterns in the grass, so, you might want to try that. And, of curse,
you get good eats if you fry your turkey. I don’t eat the food on the show very often,
but that one I did. So, obviously, it was pretty good. So, if you fry your turkey, you
get good eats. Question–oh, this came last week. I remember this. My wife and I love
Thanksgiving, but we really don’t like turkey. What should we serve? Try unicorn, you pinko
commie. And I know here in California you’re not supposed to offend pinko commies, but
where I come from, in Georgia, if you don’t eat turkey on Thanksgiving, you’re a unicorn
shank and pinko commie and that’s all there is to it. However–however, if, heaven forbid,
some turkey allergy prevents you from enjoying turkey on Thanksgiving, I would say, well,
duck tastes pretty good, too. And, in fact, we have a one-hour Christmas special coming
out soon. It’s not on YouTube yet because it hasn’t come on so that somebody could
steal it and put it there. But that will happen soon enough and you’ll be able to see our
plan for the perfect roast duck. But as it is now, nobody has seen it. It will be on
Food Network. Someone is going to have to watch TV. It packs full of advertisements.
All right, all right, this, honest to God, you’re going to think that I made this up,
okay. This question came in sometime within the last month, okay? Deep breath. Now, I
was wondering about basting a turkey–yes, opening the oven door multiple times is bad
since it lowers the heat, dries out the meat, et cetera, and brining produces a pretty succulent
piece of fowl, but I was wondering if one could say, you know, make a contraption, if
you might, that would be like a hose, a small one, say, as small as the cord for the probe
thermometer, something heat-proof, that would lay idly above. Would that still be basting?
Would it be possible? I’m really hoping that you make… And I’m only saying this
because clearly this person–and this came to us from a YouTube fan–is in desperate
need of help. And under most circumstances, I would ignore this kind of question because
they want me to invent a small hose for basting a turkey through a closed oven door, which
is wrong in more ways than I have time really to go over with you guys. And so, I just wanted
to reach out to that person through this powerful whole Internet thing that you guys have going
and say, “Please, go back on your meds.” Besides, you have to remember that basting
turkey skin is silly. Why? Why is basting a turkey silly? Come on, somebody? You’re
smart. Somebody?>>Crisp skin.
>>BROWN: What?>>Crisp skin.
>>BROWN: Crisp skin. Why would basting make crisp skin? What’s baste made out of? Why
would that anything make crisp? Have you ever put milk on cornflakes, sir? Crispier, not
crisper. Look, turkey skin is like a raincoat–here, being worn by a young Humphrey Bogart. No
turkey him, but, the whole point is that skin is there to keep moisture out. Putting moisture
on it won’t do anything, okay? If you are addicted to crispy skin–and how many of you
like your turkey with crispy skin? Of course you do. Raise your hand, cool people. It’s
like do I… The only way–the only best way–because I’m sure someone else will come up with
it to ensure that your turkey has crisp skin–is that after you brine–or if you decide not
to brine, ‘cause it’s free country, don’t brine–just uncover the thing and leave it
in the refrigerator for three days, okay? Dry skin will be crisp skin. Wet skin, won’t.
Basting, wet–it doesn’t make any sense, so, don’t bother basting because it won’t
lead–it will make a flavorful skin, but it will make a soggy skin. And who likes soggy
skin? All right. Question: I just read an article about the three biggest mistakes–again,
I didn’t right this–to make on Turkey Day, and buying a frozen bird was one on the list.
The article claims “fresh tests better.” Is that true? I know you’ve talked about
fresh being perceived as better than frozen with seafood, does the same hold true for
fowl? This is important, and it’s especially important for people living California to
understand. Raw doesn’t mean fresh. About 20 years ago, 25 years ago, California chefs
started this move towards fresh ingredients, fresh, fresh, fresh. Everything had to be
fresh, fresh all the time. As a matter of fact, you know, Chez Panisse, which is just
up the road a little bit of the ways was one of the restaurants that really started this
big movement, and that’s great because you live in California. Everything grows here.
You’ve got all the food. Oh, aren’t you proud? I live in Georgia. We have sweet potatoes,
onions, and peanuts, that’s it, so it’s kind of tough. But, well, you have to realized
on these days is that just because something is raw, it does not mean it is fresh. Fresh
should be defined as the condition most liked when it was alive. And anybody who’s watched
at least one science fiction movie knows that’s cryogenically frozen, is it not? Right? So,
you’re actually better off with frozen unless you really live near turkey farm. Now, if
you live near turkey farm, you can go and say, “Yeah, that one. I want that. Oh, okay,
yeah. Now put it in the trunk.” You know, if you can, you know, go harvest the turkey
or have it from right up the road, then fresh is better. Most Americans would be better
served by a frozen bird because it goes through a less damage during shipping, okay? Will
it always tastes better? If it’s fresh as in from the next, you know, house over, then,
yeah, that’s going to be a better-tasting bird. But if it had to be shipped from 5,
6, 7, 8, 15 states away, then most likely you’re going to be better off with a frozen
bird because they are actually watched over more closely and they suffer less in a way
of temperature crimes, so to speak. Now, I’m sure some of the chefs are going to object,
but I get to talk and they don’t so. Remember, frozen is sometimes fresher than raw, okay–not
always, not always, but often. It’s certainly true of fish and often true in poultry. All
right, question, I was wondering what is the best way to convince my mother to brine our
turkey this year; she absolutely refuses to break tradition and try it. Also, is stuffing
really evil? These are good questions because I get a lot of “my mother-in-law-won’t”
kind of questions, which is really kind of “my- mother-won’t.” We can always just
disown them, of course. I would say have your mother look at this image, this incredibly
low-res analog image. Does her turkey look that juicy and succulent, hmm? I think not.
I think she probably needs to look at this picture for a while and think about whether
she wants to look her turkey to look that way. As for the stuffing issue–and I thought
long and hard about this because I’ve had to defend my stance about stuffing being evil–stuffing
being evil, of course, because it slows down the cooking of the bird and you got to spend
more time cooking the stuffing, then the bird, not a good thing. But I wanted some empirical,
absolute proof, and I had started to do some research via Google Image, yeah. That’s
a nice, nice little function you guys have. And I came across, of course, William Blake’s
famous painting of Satan pouring the plagues upon Job. I know a lot of you have this as
a poster in college. Do you still have it? Here, we have Blake’s interpretation of–you
know, you think Satan could get some clothes, but, you know, he doesn’t–and he’s dumping
out plagues upon Job. Those of you, fan of the Old Testament will certainly recognize
this. Well, I did a little background reading some of the letters that Blake did and. Actually.
the plagues being poured out stuffing. Stuffing–stuffing was being poured out by Satan on to Job and
so it’s easy to work out this model, which is Satan is Evil, Satan likes stuffing, stuffing
is evil. I don’t think you really have to go much further than that. This is infallible
logic, simple as that. Question: AB, what is the–and this is not my work–mostest,
what’s the mostest, mostest, absolutest gotta have tool for Thanksgiving? All right,
take a look at a few images. I want you to take a look at these because they have a commonality
that I believe is critically important to the Thanksgiving mission. All right? Here’s
an image. This is supposedly the first Thanksgiving. Notice the Indians don’t have any chairs.
And that guy is still wearing a ruffle–and that’s been out of fashion for at least
a hundred years. And that guy has got a sword and–okay, so we got it. So, that’s kind
of a James town something, so, let’s memorize that picture good. Here’s another one. Did
you guys have this on your–Google image–scary zombie family Thanksgiving era. It is the
first that they came up. Also came up on your fake eyebrows and a few other things. Take
a look at that. Take a look at that. And if that’s your family, I’m sorry, but it
was on the internet, so, it must be perfectly okay to use. Here’s another one. Here’s
a family shot from what appears to be the late ‘50s maybe. Take a good look at that.
Okay, enough for that. And, here, this is one from the–from around 1941. This is a
Thanksgiving feast in 1941. So, what’s common? What’s the one thing that’s going on in
all of these that’s critically important to the Thanksgiving mission? We’ll take
another look. Table. Though not nearly enough chairs, but there’s a table. Table–and
a really spooky-looking mother. Table. Table–and perhaps married cousins. Table, sort of, kind
of out of a lane two kind of a situation, but the thing here is that people–and it’s
so easy to forget this in a day and age where we trade recipes like currency where we objectify
food so often–is that we forget what actually makes Thanksgiving thanks-giving, what actually
makes it really worth having and worth celebrating is that we all sit down, friends and family
sit down at a table and share food together. Okay, now, I know that a lot of you here,
a part of the Google food mission is this whole idea of eating a strangers, of sitting
down and talking, of eating and having meetings. Food brings people together, but if there
aren’t people and if there’s not a place for them, then food really can’t do its
magic. It’s just another meal, okay? It’s just another pile of groceries, okay? So,
this Thanksgiving when you get together, think about who I’d want to sit down at a table
with. Now, in your case, it might be a very small table because you don’t know that
many people, but–or me, I just don’t like people. It’s a problem. But I do like–never
mind. So, think about that. The table is the most important part of the Thanksgiving experience.
All right, question: Thanksgiving used to be a lot better than it is now, what’s missing
from today’s celebrations? That was just an interesting, philosophical question to
be sending to a cook, but I took it anyway. And I was thinking, well, what we’re missing
is the good old days when giant turkeys pulled carts bearing huge pumpkins with scary kids
with knives and forks. This apparently is the way it used to be. I found this during
a historical search of Google Image, so, I thought, wow, no wonder it used to be so much
fun. We had this–and then I come here and I see a skeleton of this very turkey right
outside the door. Here’s what’s missing–Norman Rockwell. Thanksgiving used to actually be
about giving thanks to something or somebody. And I think that we’ve kind of forgotten
about that. Thanksgiving, thanks-giving, somebody put that food there, you might think as you
sit down to eat about where that might have come from and who put it there, whether you
believe it to be terrestrial or non-terrestrial hands, but I do think of that as the big thing
that is missing–is being grateful. And, of course, you should be thankful of Food Network
if no one else because the odds are your recipe came from there, didn’t they–via Google
Search, of course, I’m certain? Question: We know you’re holding out on a few Thanksgiving
survival secrets, confess and you’ll feel better. It’s like the inquisitions. Nobody
expects, you know. I thought about this and I thought about my own food life at home and
what are some things that actually help me get by because, you know, Thanksgiving can
be such a crazy time and people are bringing–those of you that have Thanksgiving, do you make
people bring food? When did we get away from that? You know, it’s like somewhere along
the line, it was like–it was a kind of Martha Stewart thing, “Oh, I’m going to so impress
you. I don’t know, you don’t need to bring anything. I raised the turkey from an egg.
I crocheted a runner for the table and I made water.” You know, I don’t know about you,
I don’t really need to impress anybody. I just want to–I don’t want to have to
do all the work, so, the rule in my house is if you’re coming, you’re bringing.
Don’t–and then they’re just, like, “I got some potato chips.” We don’t have
time for that. So, but I do have one thing: bubble wrap. You’re all quiet because it’s
just, like, “That didn’t come off of image search.” No, I took it. I took this picture
with my very own camera. What can bubble wrap do for you in your Thanksgiving? Well, let
me tell you, if you put something in it that you want to keep hot, like, say, your daughter’s
money pipe on killer bunny, or a turkey or a casserole or some dinner rolls, or what
else might we serve hot during the holiday, any number of things, when you don’t have
room in the oven and you don’t have hot drawers and you’re out of cooler space,
you wrap it up in bubble wrap and it stays hot for hours. It’s a miracle. I’m feeling
out because I’m looking for investors for my new brand of food safe bubble wrap, so,
I was just trying to see how that would play here in the room? You like the bunny picture,
though. Maybe I should go back to the bunny. You like the bunny. What are you having for
Thanksgiving this year? This is what I’m having for Thanksgiving this year. A couple
of years ago, we did a show about cranberries. Did anybody see our cranberry show? We made
our own cranberry sauce from scratch, which is really easy to do. Well, last year, I had
some leftover, and it’s really amazing because one of the great things about cranberry is
it gels on its own. You can make a gelatin-like product, cranberry sauce, like, in a can,
which is the way we actually did it. You can do that without any gelatin because the cranberries
will actually do it themselves. So, if you take some of that–and I speak spoonful of
these stuff–and you put it inside of a cocktail shaker, regular cocktail shaker, and you put
in some ice and then about four fingers of bourbon and shake it up, you’ll have one
of these–a cranberry julep, I like to call it, although there’s nothing in it, but
cranberry sauce and bourbon. I haven’t met your family, but I know mine. I know who’s
coming through the door in another hour and I need to not have the shakes when they get
there. So when mom calls and says, “I’m just a few miles away, is there anything I
can pick up at the grocery store since you can’t cook?” I’ll be okay. Here’s
my meal this year, all from–all from Good Eats, I’m serving my fried turkey, the Good
Eats fried turkey, the aforementioned cranberry sauce, stuffing–which I haven’t cooked
inside the bird, but inside muffin tins cleverly–and garlicky greens. There is the entire meal.
And, you know what, I like the prison plate. It gives it that rustic feel and, you know
what, when you’re feeding a bunch of people because they stack up and nest, they won’t
slide off the counter–which I think is nice–and the neighbors don’t think it’s funny that
you’re cleaning them off with the garden hose, so. Dessert will, of course, be sweet
potato waffles stacked up with maple, whipped cream and candied cranberries. That’s what
we’re having. Of course, this could also be for breakfast. Question: If there really
was a secret to a perfect Thanksgiving and you knew what it was, would you tell us? Yes,
there is–and somebody really did send this. It was a kid in fact, an 11-year-old. There
is actually a secret to Thanksgiving, the holidays, and just about any other holiday
that has food related and then, of course, it’s owning a copy of Good Eats, The Early
Years. Not off of image search, by the way. I took that. That’s why it’s bad and out
of focus. So, there are my 11 questions that I wanted to answer for the Thanksgiving holiday.
Now, I want to take time for your questions and comments. We have microphones set up here
and here. I hope that you might be brave enough to come do that. And, I’m sorry, you’re
pointing at, what? Oh, I’m sorry, the boss lady has question, okay. She had–actually,
I was grabbing my wife, like, “She’s got a graph. She had a graph.” You had like
several graphs, didn’t you? I didn’t have a graph, I’m sorry.
>>We’re big on graph here. We’re also big on questions. So, I questions from Google
on these.>>BROWN: Am I supposed to sit?
>>Yeah, yeah, have a sit.>>BROWN: So, Okay.
>>So, feel free for the–the people in the audience, we do have mics, so go ahead, we
would like to see some live impressions so.>>BROWN: Write your segue on up to the mic.
>>But we do have the questions that all of you have been submitting through the Dory
Page the last few days. We have a system where we can submit questions and we’ve got a
big, a lot of questions for you.>>BROWN: Okay, go ahead.
>>So the first question is…>>BROWN: I haven’t seen these by the way.
All right.>>How much of the real Alton Brown do we
see on Good Eats, Iron Chef America, and The Next Iron Chef? What is your favorite gig
and why?>>BROWN: First off, that’s pretty much
all me because I don’t know how to be anybody else. I’m not a very good actor, so that’s
pretty much just me. Which is the best gig? Well, Good Eats is my precious snowflake.
You know, it’s–Good Eats is my baby. We invented that, so, you know, Good Eats is
the favorite gig because–you know, just my precious snowflake. But I like Iron Chef America
a lot because it’s really great education and I get to meet and hangout with people
that cook way better than I do–which is always nice.
>>Another question–what is your earliest memory of food?
>>BROWN: Okay, I have this. No, no, honest, gosh, I do have this. The–and it was the
first–it was also by the way synonymous or it happened in parallel with my understanding
that life will betray you. I was I think four. Maybe, no, I was three. I was three. And then
when I was three, I lived in a small town in Southern California called Los Angeles
where I was born, and on Saturday morning, I always had a bowl of Captain Crunch Cereal,
which I notice I didn’t see in any of the kitchens around here. Captain Crunch cereal.
And one day, I got up early and thought, “I’ll make my own Captain Crunch Cereal. I won’t
wait for my mom. I know how to do this.” And, so, I went out, and that’s back–and
this will shock most of you–there was a time when a man in uniform with a truck came and
he bought bottles of milk to your house, and he brought the bottles of milk to the house
and I went and I got one of these bottles and then I retched it off, the little foil
top, and I poured it all over my cereal and I sat down, and I turned on cartoons and I
took a big, big mouthful of Captain Crunch Cereal. And I should have known that the fact
that the color of the lid was different on the milk–blue is milk, green is buttermilk.
And I just glanced over the details. It’s one of the problems that I have in life in
general. Yeah, butter milk, and let me tell you, buttermilk and Captain Crunch is the
first time I realized life is out to get me, my first actual food memory.
>>Okay, we have lots of questions. Let’s go ahead and take some live from the audience.
>>BROWN: Yes, that gives me an excuse to not sit. Go ahead, sir.
>>Actually, I don’t have a question, I just have a comment. I just want to say thank
you. Thank you for making me a much better cook and thanks for coming here today.
>>BROWN: Well, you’re welcome. Are you in fact, sir, a better cook? You’re a better
cook?>>I’m a much better cook, thanks to you.
>>BROWN: Do you practice often?>>As often as I can. If I got time, yeah.
>>BROWN: Good. Okay, thank you. Go ahead.>>My wife has made some of the most delicious
brined turkey the last few years, but this year she wants to experiment with a method
that’s sometimes called the dry brine, which is salty.
>>BROWN: Yes, which were you–it’s a cured, it’s a semi-cured turkey, where instead
of using a water-based brine, you just use salt…
>>Yes.>>BROWN: …and then let it dry out.
>>Yes, I’m afraid.>>BROWN: Don’t be afraid. It’s a good
method. It can make a very flavorful turkey, but she’s going to have to be much more
careful about hitting the proper thermal window during cooking. It is not going to be as forgiving
a method, but it will be more turkey-like in flavor, so, go for it. And let me tell
you something, no matter what happens, it’s the best turkey you’ve ever had in your
life.>>Good job. Thank you very much.
>>BROWN: I can not overemphasize the importance in your marriage of that turkey being the
best turkey that’s ever hit your mouth. It doesn’t matter what actually happens.
Yes, sir?>>Between that and “yes, dear,” he’ll
have it made exactly. And what a thrill…>>BROWN: Yes, but you’ve to mix up “yes,
dear” with some other things that give the illusion of actually listening. And I like
the one that’s, like, “Wow, I never thought about that before.”
>>Right. It never crossed my mind.>>BROWN: Yes, it’s good.
>>What a thrill to have you. I would like to have you do an “Oh, bother!” for us.
>>BROWN: Oh, bother.>>Thank you.
>>BROWN: Do you want to read another one? Go ahead.
>>One–another question from Googlers–what is your favorite restaurant in the Bay Area
and why?>>BROWN: In and Out Burger. And there doesn’t
have to be a why. Why? Because I don’t have them in Georgia. That’s why. Yes, sir?
>>Yeah, is there more white meat or dark meat on a vegetarian?
>>BROWN: This is the best question that I’ve been asked in a very, very long time, because
it shows that he’s clearly thinking about whether he should bother to cook any vegetarian.
>>Exactly.>>BROWN: Here’s the thing. I suspect that
there is more white meat, which would of course be the fast-twitch muscles because they can’t
really sustain the kind of constant movement that is required to manufacture dark meat
because they don’t have the energy.>>Ah, excellent. Thank you.
>>BROWN: Yes, ma’am?>>First of all, I just want to say growing
up in a house where my mother would scream in fear every time I touched a knife and then
my father didn’t like anything that didn’t say “oink…”
>>BROWN: He didn’t like wanting anything that didn’t…
>>He didn’t like anything that didn’t say “oink” in his past life.
>>BROWN: OK.>>I just want to thank you for teaching me
how to cook. Really, I would, like, covertly go to the Food Network Channel and watch Good
Eats and be like, “Oh, that’s how you make cookies. Oh, I would go and make cookies.”
>>BROWN: That’s all part of the master plan, by the way.
>>And…>>BROWN: Pretty soon.
>>And, yes, thanks to your packet episode with, like, little, like, packets.
>>BROWN: Yes, ma’am, the pouches, the pouch.>>Yes. I’ve fed myself through college.
Thank you.>>BROWN: Excellent. And you look perfectly
healthy.>>Thank you. Wonderful.
>>BROWN: You’re not a vegetarian, are you?>>Don’t tell my mom.
>>BROWN: Your dad doesn’t want to eat anything without an oink, so, we like him. That’s
>>BROWN: You’re very welcome. Yes, sir, please?
>>How’s your pilot’s license going? And are we going to see feasting on air or something
equivalent to that?>>BROWN: You probably will see feasting on
air. I’ve had my private for about two years. I’m finishing out my instrument ticker right
now. So, yeah, I’m actually thinking about buying an old bummed out DC-3 and converting
it to an old-time airliner with dinner service. But I have to make a show about it, so. Yes,
sir?>>First of all, I like to just say…
>>BROWN: I love that you got a phone in one hand and a coffee cup in the other, a backpack,
and a Google shirt.>>Yep! There you go.
>>BROWN: It’s your poster boy! Behold!>>I just want to say first off, me and my
friends love your show, plenty of late nights watching it and, like, you know, clowning
and laughing at you occasionally, but our question for you is what is your worst cooking
blunder that you’ve ever had?>>BROWN: Hmm, cooking blunder…
>>I don’t know, personal injury, that kind of thing, whatever.
>>BROWN: I had one–I have one from recent history that was really humiliating. Will
that–does that suffice?>>That sounds fine.
>>BROWN: Yes. It was–it was… No, I mean, first off, I’m real… I tend to cook really
simply at home, but it was a couple of years ago, a Christmas eve meal that we have every
year with friends. No, it was actually Christmas dinner, a Christmas night where I had eight
people over and I’d made these–I made standing rib roast and Yorkshire pudding–which is,
you know, really not a pudding at all because, you know, the English call anything pudding
that doesn’t drip oil. It’s like this little custardy, cupcakey kind of muffin thing
and they… I screwed the Food Channel about six different levels on these things. I mean,
they’re really like these little hockey pockets, but I covered them up with all these
other stuff and I served them and the meal was going fine. And my daughter, who at that
time was 7, halfway through the meal, things are kind of real quiet, she sticks her fork
down into this whole Yorkshire pudding and she hoists it up like this and she puts her
little elbow on the table like this and says, “So, dad, what happened here?” And that’s
the reaction she wanted and she got it from everybody there, too. She’s been playing
me like a champ ever since. So that was pretty bad. Nothing that ever like blew up her was
poison or anything.>>Except for the shirt in your show, but
that’s still…>>BROWN: That’s another thing.
>>All right, cool.>>BROWN: I did blow up a turkey once, yes.
>>Cool. All right, thank you.>>BROWN: OK, go ahead.
>>Good morning, Alton. Thanks for coming out and talking to us.
>>BROWN: Thanks for having me.>>So, if there’s one food you couldn’t
live without, what would it be?>>BROWN: One food I couldn’t live without.
>>One food you couldn’t go without for the rest of your life from this point forward,
what would that be?>>BROWN: Well, this is a year where I’ve
learned to live without a lot of different foods. I’ve lost 50 pounds this year. And
I learned to live without and sweets. I would have told you that I probably couldn’t do
that. I’ve learned to live without much alcohol. I couldn’t live without steak.
Even cut from a vegetarian. Well, cows are vegetarians, so, you know, yes. Steak would
be… Yes, I’m not sure I’d want to live without steak.
>>And so the follow up to that would be then when you’re asked what temperature would
you like the steak cooked at, you know?>>BROWN: Yes, please. I’m a rare to medium-rare
guy. Yes, you know, I like high heat fast, get it in and get it out, and it better still
be a little chilly right dead center so that I can get it and my teeth will go–which to
me is the fun part about eating.>>Hi.
>>BROWN: Hi.>>So, I teach a class once a week to middle-schoolers
on The Chemistry of Cooking.>>BROWN: You teach middle-schoolers?
>>Yes, once a week.>>BROWN: You don’t a twitch or anything?
>>So, I show them the wonders of eggs and we’ve made rock candy and we even made root
beer, and I just can’t convince them that there’s actually science in food. And I
was looking for these tips.>>BROWN: Oh, you can’t.
>>Well, I’ve will always shown them the eggs and I’ve shown them all the things
they’re doing and I ask them where the science is and they’re, like, “It’s eggs.”
>>BROWN: They don’t get it?>>They don’t get it.
>>BROWN: Morons. Well, a moron is similar in mental capacity of a twelve-year-old or
less, so, they are actually morons, aren’t they–I mean, by definition, by strict definition?
So, you want something that absolutely, positively shows them that there’s science in food?
Have you made cotton candy from scratch yet?>>Uh-uh.
>>BROWN: Well, have you made marshmallows from scratch yet?
>>No.>>BROWN: So, you’ve really been kind of
lazy as a teacher. Have you dumped Graham crackers in liquid nitrogen and have people
chew them and shoot steam out of their mouths three feet?
>>We try to keep liquid nitrogen away from the middle-schoolers.
>>BROWN: Because the liquid nitrogen will do it. It convinces them every single time.
I would make cotton candy. I would make cotton candy from scratch, which isn’t hard, and
I would make some marshmallows…>>Okay.
>>BROWN: …because that’s really good science. And then I’d probably blow up some
eggs in a microwave because that’s fun. But you really, in the end, are going to have
to break down and get that liquid nitrogen I think. That’s what I would recommend.
They’ll come a-runnin’. Yes, ma’am?>>Hi, Mr. Brown.
>>BROWN: Hi.>>I have a question from my eight-year-old.
>>BROWN: Your eight-year-old? Okay?>>He watches the show with us. When will
the squid from squid fishes be making a rare appearance?
>>BROWN: Well, we’ve done two squid shows. We did Squid Pro Quo and then we did… I
can’t remember what the other one was called. Just look on YouTube, Good Eat Squid, it’s
there, because we did one that was all about calamari, kind of on a ship that rocked all
the time and had a giant squid that attacked us. Huge production values. So we got two
squid shows. I don’t know if we’ll do a third squid show. I mean…
>>He just wants to see the prop again.>>BROWN: Oh, he just wants to see the giant
>>BROWN: Well, our behind-the-scene show, behind the Eats, which is a one-hour special
that replays every now and then, the giant squid are in place in that, so the giant squid
arm spins in three. And point out to him, pause it and point to him that the whole end
of the squid arm is actually constructed from bathroom mats.
>>Oh.>>BROWN: With the suction cups, you know,
the other ones that go in the tub…>>Yes.
>>BROWN: That’s what it is.>>Thank you so much.
>>BROWN: Sure, you’re welcome. I like your kid, by the way. Yes, sir?
>>To me, it seems like you do a lot the science of cooking, like traditional techniques and
stuff, but you don’t do science as cooking–MG, [INDISTINCT] anything like that. I was just
always wondering like why you don’t go that way?
>>BROWN: Why I don’t do more molecular gastronomy on the show?
>>Yes.>>BROWN: Because people can’t go down to
the food mart and get, you know, calcium alginate, you know, or methyl cellulose. Well, actually,
they can, but it’s called Metamucil and you know. And they’re still–and the truth
is is although it’s a great method, [INDISTINCT] does require machinery that most people don’t
have. It also requires know-how to make it safe. So, you know, once–we also pride ourselves
on the fact that Good Eats is about food that everybody can get everywhere. And, in fact,
we used to and still do on some cases just call up grocery stores around the country
and say, “Hey, do you have, you know, blah, blah, blah,” to make sure that we’re not
kind of going over the edge into the specialty direction. And the other part is that we try
to make the shows about things that we know people actually want to eat. Nobody wakes
up in the middle of the night and says, “Wow, I wish I had some [INDISTINCT] methyl cellulose,
you know, scallop caviar.” People just don’t do it, you know. What they want is pizza or
some hot chocolate or something. So, until that really becomes something that’s useful
for people, I’m not going to bother them with it. I enjoy talking about it on Iron
Chef America and it’s got a definite place, but right now I’m holding it. Thank you.
>>Thank you.>>BROWN: There you go. Yes, sir?
>>Hi. I’ve got a two-part question. First being…
>>BROWN: We’ll see how you do on part one.>>It sounds good. It seems like you and America’s
Test Kitchen both take a semi-scientific approach…>>BROWN: Yes, but I’m a lot cooler and
a lot funnier.>>That’s… I wanted to get your comparison.
>>BROWN: And handsome.>>Second, have you seen their turkey show
and…?>>BROWN: I haven’t seen their turkey show.
>>They use ice to cool down the breast.>>BROWN: Yes.
>>You have aluminum foil down, I believe.>>BROWN: Yes. That was 10 years ago. I don’t
really bother with that anymore. I fry all my turkeys now. I fry them. I got a turkey
derrick. Those turkeys are done in 45 minutes, we’re eating, and that hot oil that’s
left over, I cook up a bunch of sweet potato French fries. I don’t mess with the oven
anymore. That’s so 1999. And, by the way, I don’t watch other cooking shows because
I’m scared that I’m either going to see something that I end up wanting to steal or
I’m going to see something that somehow makes me do what I do differently. So I don’t
watch them because I am scared of them. Besides, they might be really good and I get depressed.
So, I don’t do that. But I have seen one America’s Test Kitchen. And I love Cooks’
Illustrated Magazine–although I’m kind of tired of them saying, “The ultimate something.
This is the ultimate brownie.” I’m, like, How do you…? How about I make it and I’ll
decide? You know, never on Good Eats do we call anything the ultimate or the best. How
are we to say, you know? We’re not so…>>Thank you.
>>BROWN: That’s it. Was that part one and part two?
>>Yes, just how that’s suppose to be.>>BROWN: Wow, it’s so seamless. It was
a nice segue. You should consider a… All right, you got another one?
>>No, no. These are fun. Let’s go one more with that.
>>BROWN: Okay.>>I’m torn because I have two questions
that my wife will kill me if I don’t ask both of them.
>>BROWN: Well, I don’t want you dead or your wife…
>>Right. So I’ve done a bunch of cooking and this is like an equipment-geek question.
>>BROWN: Okay.>>I was wondering your opinion. Is it true
that sharp knives are safer than dull knives?>>Yes. Sharp knives are absolutely safer
than dull knives because…>>Because I cut myself with sharp knives
a lot more.>>BROWN: Well, I didn’t say you couldn’t
cut yourself with one, because dull knives require force, and force when it releases–and
it does–you live in a place that’s very close to a thing called a fault line? Do you
guys know about that? And when the force builds up and then it releases all at once, terrible
things happen. It certainly can if you’re a bridge. Same thing happens when cutlery
goes out of control. Dull knives require force, force goes out of control, and the wounds
that it causes tend to be ragged, jagged, and difficult to sew back together.
>>But I find that I cut myself a lot more often while I just, like, brush against the
knife or something, which never happens with a dull knife.
>>BROWN: That’s called being clumsy. I mean, yes, it’s like you got to think of
all knives as light-sabers. I mean, nobody in Star Wars just [INDISTINCT], you know.
And I suggest that when you handle it, when the knife is out, you had a sound effect,
[INDISTINCT] so that you’re aware that the edge is ever present. The reason that people
tend to get cut in kitchens with sharp knives more is when they don’t have cutting boards
at the proper size and dimension. It’s like when I come up to the cutting board and I
make sure that my cutting board, if I put my knife down, corner to corner, I make sure
that there’s at least two inches still to go on the board, that’s how you know it’s
big enough. And I don’t let the knife go anywhere else. You know, you don’t, “Yeah,
go over there in the pantry and get… Oh… Oh.” You know, it stays–it stays down.
You know, boom. And you shouldn’t have too many knives. And you should kind of consider
them all killers because they’re sharp.>>My other question: Are you going to talk
about how you lost weight at some point or do a show? And did you all of a sudden…
>>BROWN: You have to be really careful when you talk about losing weight or doing shows
about losing weight because all of a sudden pretty much later you could go burrrr.
>>Right.>>BROWN: You know, and then you’re like
riding around on a lark, you know. So, if once–I am doing Good Eats because a lot of
people have asked for this and we’re getting you like a Good Eats episodes that feature
some of the foods that I relied on just for me to get 50 pounds off in seven months–things
like eating cardboard and drinking glasses of air. No, okay, but I won’t do anything
real serious about it until I’ve managed to keep it off for a year.
>>Were you a low-carb fan or did you follow any of these?
>>BROWN: I gave up, number one, I gave up the things that were really bad habits for
me, which is I ate a lot of sweets, a lot of sweets. I mean, I was like a hobbit. I
had first dessert, second dessert, and then very often, right before bed, I had breakfast,
which could be a doughnut. And so there was–there was a lot of… Yes. If desserts are carbs,
and most of them are, yeah.>>Thanks a lot.
>>BROWN: I got rid a lot of those. Yes?>>Seven years ago, I was told of an urban
legend where you tried to make milk without using cow’s milk. Is that true?
My wife is here.>>Oh, then, forget I asked the question then.
>>BROWN: I didn’t make milk. I made–I made cheese.
>>Oh, okay.>>BROWN: No, I made butter. You, see, when…
When you first have a kid…>>Sorry.
>>BROWN: Yes, ma’am?>>Hi, Alton.
>>BROWN: Hi.>>I’m a big fan.
>>BROWN: Thank you.>>FEMALE: And I don’t stuff my turkeys
anymore because of you.>>BROWN: You don’t stuff your turkeys anymore
because stuffing is evil. Yeah?>>Thanks. So I just wanted to know how has
being a host on Iron Chef influenced your recipes on Good Eats?
>>BROWN: Everything that–have they changed food on Good Eats?
>>FEMALE: Yes.>>BROWN: Gosh, I haven’t thought about
that. I don’t know. That’s a really good question. Is the food that I see in Iron Chef
America affected what I make on Good Eats? I don’t–I don’t know, but we get everything
done in an hour. And then Jeffrey Steingarten sits in the corner and drools while I… No.
I… No, I don’t think so because I think they’re very… Yes. Yes, it has. And here’s
why. The ingredients, because on Iron Chef America, we get so much exposure to ingredients
that are just coming into the mainstream, and, so things like grains of paradise–you
didn’t see those in grocery stores 10 years ago–now people are starting to use them.
That was something that I first saw in Iron Chef America. So I wouldn’t say the cooking
processes have I taken over, but definitely ingredients. You know, we’re getting ready
to do a show about curries, and I probably wouldn’t have done that had I not spent
so much time watching and admiring Indians chefs on Iron Chef America. Yeah. Yeah, it
has. Good question. No one has ever asked me that before. Yes, ma’am?
>>Hey, thanks for coming and hanging with the pinko commies out here in the Bay Area.
It’s been a lot of…>>BROWN: You’re not pinko commies yet.
As long as you eat turkey, you’re okay. It’s when you start eating a unicorn that
there’s a problem.>>And one–one of our biggest pinko commies
out here is Michael Pollan. He’s written a lot of these books in defense of food.
>>BROWN: Omnivore’s Dilemma, yeah.>>Omnivore’s Dilemma. And over the summer,
he wrote a piece in the New York Times kind of about cooking shows and America’s obsession
with watching food.>>BROWN: And about how we just watch them
now and don’t actually cook.>>Nobody, don’t make them. Yeah. So I’m
just wondering what your thoughts on that because my father is a great cook, and I don’t
cook myself ‘cause I eat his food and I eat at Google. So, I just wanted to like…
>>BROWN: Well, if I work here, I would eat here three times a day. And probably have
Thanksgiving dinner somehow by saving out guest passes. I’d figure out a way to make
that work. Nobody blames you for that. First off, Pollan, wrong. There’s just no way,
I think that it sounded like a really good story and so he went out and found some research
to prove exactly what he wanted to. It’s kind of like the–in the book Jurassic Park.
There are only 82 velociraptors if you’re only for 82 velociraptors. There are actually
a lot more velociraptors. You know, the truth is is I go out and do public events all year
long, I talk to real home cooks all year long. I have more exposure to actual real people
than he will ever meet in his entire life. And even if half of them were lying to me,
I would know that people are cooking like never before. So, “Nyah nyah” to Michael
>>BROWN: However, I will say this. I think that there are a lot of folks that watch–yeah,
don’t go away Mrs. Pollan, come back, sit–a lot of people will watch for a long time before
they’ll get up and make that move. A lot of people that will say, “I am never cooking.”
I love this because people come to me and say, “I don’t cook.” I’m, like, “Okay.”
“I’m not going to cook.” “Okay.” “But I love your show.” “Okay. Talk
to me in a year.” You know, and he’s like, “I cook now. Okay, it’s really fun.”
You know, sometimes it takes a long time to turn them, but we turn them. We always turn
them. All right, just a couple more. Here we go, sir. Go.
>>Who in your opinion is the best Iron Chef?>>BROWN: Like, I’m going to tell you that.
Like, so, I say one word and get reservations in their restaurants till the end of time
and cut off everyone else despite my face. They are all equally precious, unique. They’re
all culinary geniuses of their time. I love them all equally. I’m not—-he’s already
walking away, all right. You know, they’re Iron Chefs, what do say? You are happy when
you get fed. And I don’t have a favorite. I would never be that judgmental. Yes, sir?
>>Hi, I just wanted to say watching your show was the reason why I went to Davis and
studied Food Science Technology. It was kind of a huge inspiration for me…
>>BROWN: Did you get your money’s worth out of your education?
>>Oh, absolutely. Davis is an amazing school…>>BROWN: Yeah? Because you could’ve just
bought the entire box set DVD of Good Eats and saved yourself all that tuition.
>>That’s very true, but I just wanted to know what are your inspirations. And, as far
as cooking, what is your kind of specialty? What do you feel like you really have your
strengths in, as far as like types, like, for example, Mario Batali, Italy is kind of
like his thing?>>BROWN: Really?
>>Yes.>>BROWN: Oh, yeah, yes.
>>So, do you feel like there’s a vision that you really are…
>>BROWN: Morimoto, Fish.>>Yeah.
>>BROWN: Fish. Do you ever notice that how Morimoto there, fish? How does he work that?
Someone asked me once, “Who would you throw down with if you could throw down on Iron
Chef?” I’m, like, Morimoto, but it’s going to be battle Beanie-Weenie because I
would take him down. But, no, fish. I’m sorry, what was your question? Oh, what am
I good at, what do I have specialty?>>Well, and also your inspirations, like
who really got you into cooking and what really got you in this…
>>BROWN: Julia Child. I mean, when I was a kid I had two heroes, Jacque Cousteau and
Julia Child… and Batman–who didn’t eat that well. And I’ll tell you what, when
I was still back in my earlier life—-when I was directing TV commercials—-I watched
a lot of the Frugal Gourmet and Jeff Smith and his early-—I don’t care what happened
later on–he was a great teacher. And so they inspired me a lot to get in the kitchen. And
I still have their books and still cook from those books. As for modern inspirations, I
mean, everybody that sets foot in the kitchen stadium on Iron Chef America is an inspiration,
literally, because I learn so much from that. That’s my continuing education, my masters,
so to speak, except I get paid. As for my specialty, I’m looking at my wife–meat.
I’m a pretty good meat person. I cook some mean meat. I would say that if there’s going
to be an Alton Brown restaurant, we would just serve meat. Meat, maybe like steak with
a side of fried chicken and steak tar tar for dessert and we’d like–we’d make napkins
out of very, like, prosciutto, really thin cut, yeah. I’m a meat guy, a meat cutter
and cook.>>Thank you very much.
>>BROWN: Yeah, sure. All right, we have two more questions and then we’ll be done.
>>In one of my favorite episodes of Good Eats, you dressed up like, Colonel Sanders
and explained in a heavy southern drawl how to make a mint julep. So, would you…
>>BROWN: How did you… you’ve been paying close attention than I ever gave you credit
for. Colonel Sanders is a registered trademark of PepsiCo, so, I don’t know anything about
>>BROWN: But I will say that, yes, he made a mint julep and he also made a pineapple
upside down cornmeal cake. And he is about to have–we’re getting ready to do a chicken
and dumpling episode where he is going to make the southern chicken and dumplings, and
his northern Yankee cousin is going to make the northern version of that. So, if you’re
a fan, you just keep watching, you’re going to like what you’ll see.
>>We’ll look forward to seeing him again.>>BROWN: Sorry? Oh, he’s coming.
>>Good.>>BROWN: And who else is coming with him?
Sorry. The war is still so fresh. So, watch for that. I don’t have his northern cousin
worked out yet. I’m watching a lot of like Newhart reruns to try to… to get that whole
“pepperidge farm” thing going down. But it’s kind of tough. So, thank you.
>>Great.>>BROWN: All right, you madam are the last
question of the day and then you people have to go back to work.
>>What a very great honor.>>BROWN: Uh, well.
>>So, each one of us is allowed, I believe, to have a guest for a meal at Google, two
times per month. I’ve never pitched a project to Marissa before, but I would now like to
suggest a new 20 percent project, since I don’t want Alton basically to leave—-I’m
having so much fun—-we should keep Alton here as our guests for meals three times a
day as…>>BROWN: So, that’s the slavery they were
telling me about. Have this Kool-Aid.>>And I would personally invite you as my
guest to Ingredient Café for Thanksgiving dinner—-the day before Thanksgiving.
>>BROWN: Thank you. Well, how about just every time I come to this side of the country
I just come here for lunch. Thank you for having me, everybody. Thank you.
>>And, actually, I’d just say that…>>BROWN: What?
>>That the most popular question was people wanted to know whether or not you’re coming
here and work as a Google chef. So, you have a ton of fans here.
>>BROWN: You don’t want me here as a Google chef. I’d be like, no, something for you.
I’d be–I would definitely turn soup Nazi if I was here and it would be like chili all
every day. You wouldn’t like it. You are much better off with these guys. So, thanks,
everybody, for coming. I appreciate it very much. Thanks. You’re a good sport. Thank
you. Thank you very much.>>And I should say…
>>BROWN: Go away. Go to work.>>The event actually continues. Alton will
be over here signing books on the riser, so, yes…