outrageous food

‘Outrageous Food’ now a New Food Network Series

Last spring the Food Network premiered a special called “Outrageous Food” hosted by Next Food Network Star 4 winner Aaron McCargo Jr.  Well, it looks as though the special’s popularity may have spawned a new series of the same name.  But not the same host.

According to AllYourTV.com NFNS 6 runner up Tom Pizzica will be the face of Outrageous Food the series.  That is a bit of an upgrade.  Tom’s personality and significantly more polished on-screen talent makes him better suited for such a show than McCargo.  Also, the show’s format may not be exactly what we saw when McCargo hosted his special.  Only time will tell.

Hagan Blount and Tom PizzicaNoted NYC food blogger and recent 7 Questions interviewee Hagan Blount was part of the off-camera crew at a recently taped episode in Brooklyn.  Hagan has provided a little amuse bouche of the episode on his blog The Wandering Foodie.  It includes pictures like the one here that shows Hagan and Pizzica on location at the Park Slope Chip Shop.

I discussed NFNS and Outrageous food with new host Tom Pizzica in this exclusive interview HERE.

Outrageous Food with Aaron McCargo Jr.

Food Network describes tonight’s special:

Big Daddy Aaron McCargo Jr. searches out great restaurants dishing up some of America’s most outrageous food. Like a five foot pizza delivered by crane; A five pound breakfast called The Thing; The Terrible Garbage Burger, with two dozen toppings including wasabi mustard and an entire hot fudge sundae; Hotter-than-hot wings made with super-spiced vodka; And ice cream flavors made with everything from curry to alcohol, including ‘Secret breakfast,” with bourbon and corn flakes.

Outrageous Food has since been turned into a series hosted by another NFNS alum, Tom Pizzica in whose hands the vehicle has really taken flight.  For those not familiar with Aaron McCargo Jr. he was the winner (I use that term loosely) of Next Food Network Star 4 and the host of Big Daddy’s House.

Here’s the bio from his own web site:

Aaron McCargo, Jr. competed on and won season four of The Next Food Network Star in 2008, beating out thousands of culinary hopefuls for the ultimate dream job – his own Food Network show. Big Daddy’s House premiered August 3, 2008 and ranked as the number one “In the Kitchen” weekend show during its initial six-episode run. Food Network renewed the show for a second season, which premiered January 4, 2009 and for a third season, which premiered July 12, 2009.

On Big Daddy’s House, Aaron shares his passion for big, bold flavors and fun, family cooking. From comfort foods to barbeque favorites to breakfast delights, Aaron whips up mouth-watering recipes inspired by many years of culinary experience and his fun-loving family while bringing a down-to-earth vibe and warm smile to the kitchen. Whether cooking with his children, relatives, friends, or even by himself, big food and big fun reign supreme.

A family man who adores all things flavorful, Aaron’s passion for cooking was sparked at the age of four when he started baking cakes in his sister’s Easy Bake Oven. Always an entrepreneur at heart, Aaron began making and selling cakes and cookies to his childhood friends. At the age of 13, Aaron was as a Junior Volunteer in the kitchen at Cooper Hospital University. He has since worked in nine New Jersey restaurants including casual and fine dining. In 2003, Aaron opened his own restaurant in Camden, N.J., called McCargo’s Restaurant.  Most recently, Aaron served as the executive VIP catering chef at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia. He attended Atlantic Cape Community College’s Academy of Culinary Arts.

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Food TV Baffles Me Sometimes

Originally posted on July 25, 2008.

Hello, I am Stuart, and I’m a foodie.

Where do I start?

Last week’s Iron Chef: America:  I have been blogging this show for quite some time now and I have never seen any challenger capture the imagination of the public like Gabrielle Hamilton.  The hits I get on her are amazing.  I hope TFN is paying attention, they may have accidentally found the Next Food Network Star.  And Bobby Flay’s sous chef Renee ain’t bad either.  I should know I thought five years ago that Anne Burrell needs her own show.  Are you listening Tuschman?  I got the sight.

Which now brings me to all of the turmoil of NFNS:  Fixed!  Aaron had one of the worst performances of anyone in the history of the show last week and now (thanks to a network blunder) we know that he is the winner.  Fixed!  Well, actually Mary Nolan was the real winner.  Fixed!  She got a show and didn’t even have to compete.  And oddly enough Kelsey Nixon, the brightest face to come on the network in a while got axed (presumably to make sure Aaron would win).  Fixed!

SARCASM ALERT: But TFN was on to something with Mary Nolan.  My stats on her are off the chart.  She’s a solid fit for the network, but apparently a lot of you love her.  I like her, she’s nice, but Kelsey has star (Rachael Ray cross-over star) written all over her.  Instead of calling Aaron McCargo’s new show Big Daddy’s House they should call it One And Done.  Out of the ten chefs they had to choose from they went with the guy who was horrible on camera.  No wonder the winner’s show never gets picked up for a second season.  Except for Guy Fieri.  I see why Top Chef and Hell’s Kitchen smoke NFNS in the ratings.  Sure they are just shows about people screaming and there is little actual cooking to them but you at least feel that they find the best person in the end.

NFNS: FN Website Accidentally Reveals Outcome

Originally posted Friday, July 25, 2008.

By Pegasus News wire

Food Network website accidentally reveals outcome of Next Food Network Star

Rut-ro, someone at the Food Network’s head’s gonna roll: On Thursday night, its Web site accidentally, prematurely revealed the outcome of the The Next Food Network Star, whose finale is on Sunday, July 27, three days away.

Here is a photo of one of the three remaining finalists on  <em>Next Food Network Star</em>, which just coincidentally  happens to be Aaron.
Here is a photo of one of the three remaining finalists on Next Food Network Star, which just coincidentally happens to be Aaron.

The boo-boo was caught by Nancy Nichols at D Magazine, who got a tip from a commenter and hit the site, where she found exit interviews with the two losing contestants and a clip of the “Winning Moment”, wherein the winner was revealed.

A commenter noted a pull-down menu with a new show called Big Daddy’s House. Does anyone need another hint of the identity of the winner?

By 1 a.m., the Food Network site had been scraped, then rebuilt to hide the evidence.

It’s the perfect capper for a show that had become an absolute whipping to endure. It attracted local interest only because Dallasite Lisa Garza, co-owner of Suze, was a contestant. But the show forced viewers to withstand the increasing ickiness of Food Network executives Bob Tuschman and Susie Folgelson. There’s a reason people who are behind the camera are behind the camera. And last week’s episode, where contestant Aaron was inexplicably allowed to continue on to the finale despite his poor performance, reeked of stacked deck and pre-determined outcome. Oops, hope that isn’t too much of a hint about who the final winner is.

Posted by T.G.

If this is true then Aaron McCargo Jr. wins the Amy Finley Express Ticket To Nowhere.  Finley has said that she didn’t want to do anymore Food TV because she felt that people didn’t think she belonged there.  I think a year from now, McCargo may feel the same way.  I hope he is as noble with it as Finley has been.  I mean, Aaron wasn’t bad, he just wasn’t good.  This contest is not about finding the Next Food Network Star.

Here are some screen captures of the site before TFN fixed it:

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Stuart in 80 Words or Less

Stuart is a celebrity chef, food activist and award-winning food writer. He penned the cookbooks Third Coast Cuisine: Recipes of the Gulf of Mexico, No Sides Needed: 34 Recipes To Simplify Life and Amigeauxs - Mexican/Creole Fusion Cuisine. He hosts two Internet cooking shows "Everyday Gourmet" and "Little Grill Big Flavor." His recipes have been featured in Current, Lagniappe, Southern Tailgater, The Kitchen Hotline and on the Cooking Channel.

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Stuart’s Honors & Awards

2015 1st Place Luck of the Irish Cook-off
2015 4th Place Downtown Cajun Cook-off
2015 2nd Place Fins' Wings & Chili Cook-off
2014 2015 4th Place LA Gumbo Cook-off
2012 Taste Award nominee for best chef (web)
2012 Finalist in the Safeway Next Chef Contest
2011 Taste Award Nominee for Little Grill Big Flavor
2011, 12 Member: Council of Media Tastemakers
2011 Judge: 29th Chef's of the Coast Cook-off
2011 Judge: Dauphin Island Wing Cook-off
2011 Cooking Channel Perfect 3 Recipe Finalist
2011 Judge: Dauphin Island Gumbo Cook-off
2011 Culinary Hall of Fame Member
2010 Tasty Awards Judge
2010 Judge: Bayou La Batre Gumbo Cook-off
2010 Gourmand World Cookbook Award Nominee
2010 Chef2Chef Top 10 Best Food Blogs
2010 Denay's Top 10 Best Food Blogs
2009 2nd Place Bay Area Food Bank Chef Challenge
2008 Tava: Discovery Contest Runner-up


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