The Food Network's show Kitchen Casino ran a single season in 2014. The Food Network's show was a bizarre combination of extreme cuisine and high-stakes gambling all at the same time. However, it was cancelled the same year it aired because of low ratings and was much maligned by critical reviews. Eight episodes was the extent of its lifespan.
Now, that doesn't mean that Kitchen Casino didn't have some qualities. Although the show may not have worked as a whole there are still a lot of interesting lessons we can take from it, especially when it comes to adding some new twists to cooking. However, before look at the reasons the show was worth a watch, let's quickly take a look at why it was conceived.
The Online Inspiration for Kitchen Casino
Towards the end of the nineties, online casino gaming became a reality. Thanks to developers like Microgaming and Playtech, the concept of playing games such as blackjack, roulette and slots via your computer started to gain popularity. By the start of the new millennium, the iGaming industry as it became known started to boom. Today, online casino gaming is worth more than $47 billion and you'll now find hundreds of sites to choose from.
In fact, such is the network of online casinos out there that there are sites dedicated to reviewing and rating the best ones. For example, to find the best UK online casino sites, a player could visit ukonlinecasinos.co.uk and receive a full list of options. Covering everything from the bonuses they offer to the overall rating of its gaming options, this site basically provides a guide for any newbies looking to join the action.
This combination of online casinos and auxiliary review sites has led to more people enjoying a few bets online. The upshot of this is that online casino gaming has become hugely popular and, therefore, a source of inspiration for TV producers and moviemakers. Kitchen Casino is just one of example of how the "online casino culture" has seeped into mainstream TV culture, but what else makes it worth watching?
Don't Be Afraid to Give Yourself a Challenge
The show's unique formula definitely meant that contestants had to think on their feet. So what exactly happened there? Well, in the first round of the show the host would 'spin' a slot machine to reveal three elements that the chef must use in their first dish, style of cuisine, main ingredient and theme. At around eight minutes in the show, the host would spin the slot machine again for a new ingredient that needed to be added to the dish but the machine would not always reveal the ingredient but rather a flavour/taste, colour, texture that the chiefs must use. If you really want to give yourself a culinary challenge you could try replicating this interesting concept and really challenge yourself to create a cohesive dish based on such random ingredients and ideas. However, if this exact formula is a little too high pressure for you, you can perhaps try challenging yourself with something smaller at first. Start by throwing an unexpected ingredient into the mix, or try some brand new recipes. Then you can work your way up to a completely random dish worthy of the show's first round.
The show's roulette round also shows us the value of working together, or at least not being at each other's throats... In this round, the contestant's workstations would become a roulette wheel spinning a number of times throughout the round. The catch? When the wheel stops moving, whoever's dish is in front of you is now your dish. What we can learn from this round is that even if you don't like your fellow chief's style the best path is to try and work with them. As many of the show's contestants learned the hard way, even if you may not agree with another person's methods it's best to get on and work with what they've done, rather than just complain about what a bad job they've left you with.
Combine Your Passions
The very concept of Kitchen Casino was the combination of two very high-pressure worlds - professional cooking and gambling. If you can handle the heat of one, then you maybe be adept at handling the other! Although you may want to try online gambling to bring the casino to your kitchen rather than taking a trip down to your local casino with your ingredients! If you're new to the world of online gaming, you'll be surprised and very possibly overwhelmed by the sheer amount of options. In fact, the vast majority of online operators offer different sign-up and deposit bonuses, which is why websites like this Canadian guide to online casinos exist, to provide a central hub of information for the options out there, and also compare their range of games and offers. Thinking about the unlikely combination of cooking and gambling Kitchen Casino brought, we think there's really no reason to not consider taking it further. Go with combining food and one of your passions. For example, if you're a movie fan you could try challenging yourself to make a film-themed menu, or if you're a painter you could try your hand at some edible art!
So what do you think? Does Kitchen Casino inspire you to try anything new in the kitchen? Let us know below!