Thursday, September 10

Hanging Out With Sam The Cooking Guy

sam the cooking guy
Sam The Cooking Guy

There is one cooking show on television that Jeff and I enjoy watching together: Just Cook This with Sam The Cooking Guy. Actually, it's the only cooking show that we enjoy watching together. Why? Because as the name implies, it's more about Sam than the food. And that's a good thing, because unlike many t.v. personalities, Sam is funny, often irreverent, and completely laid-back. He keeps cooking real. For example, he doesn't delete mistakes from the show. As he said yesterday, "Shit happens in the kitchen, and we leave that in the show. People like that." We do, Sam.

Sam The Cooking Guy tapes his show in his own kitchen (which I can tell you is gorgeous), and prepares no-fuss meals that are big on taste. When he started it in 2001, his goal was to make cooking easy and appealing for the average home cook. So he nixed the fancy kitchen equipment and esoteric ingredients and achieved his goal -- his show has won 11 Emmys. His first cookbook Just A Bunch of Recipes was published in 2008, and he has two more coming out in 2010.

sam the cooking guy making shrimp salad
Sam brandishing a huge bunch of spicy shrimp skewers.

Yesterday I met Sam at a luncheon at his house. He was a fantastic host. Despite cooking and serving the entire time, he managed to chat with guests, share amusing stories, and pose for pictures, all effortlessly.

His food was fantastic too. After serving cocktails made from a refreshing mixture of vodka, soda, lime juice, cucumber, and basil, Sam served three distinctive salads. He has teamed up with Fresh Express to promote their new salads (click here for a list of participating stores). According to the company, Fresh Express Seasonal Salads "are nurtured, tended and picked at the peak of freshness by Fresh Express farmers, then packed into eco-friendly brown bags with less plastic than the typical packaged salads." They also taste great. I know. I ate a lot of them yesterday.

First Sam served a salad that would delight any carnivore: mache lettuce was topped with succulent sliced steak, piquant goat cheese, and crunchy tortilla strips then dressed lightly with a tangy cilantro vinaigrette. For seafood lovers, Sam served spicy grilled shrimp skewers on a bed of tender lettuce leaves. He saved the best for the last. His Mediterranean spinach salad consisted of fresh spinach tossed with warm, garlicky roasted tomatoes, Parmesan cheese, and a light olive oil and balsamic vinaigrette.

sam the cooking guy and his assistant, Erin prepping steak salad
Sam and his assistant Erin are assembling the steak salads on his bitchin' bamboo plates.

Not only were they delicious, but they were also served on chic eco-friendly plates which Sam says, "are totally bitchin'." They are, actually. They're made from fallen bamboo leaves.

So next time you need a good meal and a good laugh, tune in to Sam's show. He's totally bitchin'.

For more information about Sam, his book, his products, and where you can view his shows, visit his website, Sam The Cooking Guy.


Bellini Valli said...

Sam was here in the Okanagan last month so I went to see him at the Predator Ridge Golf Club. He served Pimm cocktails to us as well.

T.W. Barritt at Culinary Types said...

What fun! Are you going to do a guest shot on the show?

Anonymous said...

How fun! I love Sam's show and it's great to hear that he is as cool in person.

Anonymous said...

Where do we find him? Food network? PBS? Or is he local to Southern Cal?

Michelle @ Find Your Balance said...

Oh I've never heard of him. Fun! And cool plates :-)

Anonymous said...

He's on Discovery Health. I haven't seen any new shows in a while yet, just repeats. Worth watching.

Susan from Food Blogga said...

val-Weren't those drinks rockin'? I had to stop after a couple of sips. I'm such a lightweight. It's pathetic.

TW- Let's hope so! Sam and Sue has a ring to it.

anonymous-Yeah, he's just like he is on his show.

anonymous-He's on Discovery Health. I added a note to the post with his website. It lists all of the stations that carry his show.

michelle-Glad to introduce you then!

yoginisuz-Yeah, even the repeats are good.

The Italian Dish said...

Wow, I've never heard of him! I jumped on over and checked out his site and book. What a fun guy. I'll be spending some time watching his videos. Thanks for the post. This is why I love fellow bloggers!

Velva said...

Great Blog post! I can use a little Sam reality cooking TV at home. I may need to check him out.

Abby said...

Cool! Never heard of him. Not sure we get DH, but I'm going to check!

We Are Not Martha said...

Hahahe looks awesome; definitely need to check his show out :) And what a treat for you!!


nora@ffr said...

wow! this is cool!! thanx for introducing such a great cook! :)

Hornsfan said...

Very cool - I'll have to check this guy out, I've not seen his show!

Anali said...

Perfect timing! I just clicked on the links and was delighted to see a nice recipe and a coupon! I'm going food shopping this afternoon and will look for the salad. Love the coupons! Thanks Susan! ; )