Sunday, January 3, 2010

Iron Chef America goes to the White House

Photo courtesy of the White House: Bobby Flay, White House chef Cristeta Comerford, Alton Brown, Michelle Obama, Mario Batali and Emeril Lagasse.

Michelle Obama's vegetable garden serves as the battleground on the two-hour season premier of Iron Chef America, which airs Sunday at 8 p.m.

In an episode filmed this summer, three professional chefs and White House chef Cristeta Comerford are welcomed by the first lady and allowed to use anything found in the garden to create their meals.

The chefs - Mario Batali, Emeril Lagasse and Bobby Flay, plus Comerford - then return to The Food Network's Kitchen Stadium in New York, where Flay and Comerford face off against Batali and Lagasse, each team producing five dishes showcasing the ingredients.

"Most significantly what you'll notice is the fact that she's wearing what has previously been called 'Batali orange," Batali told CNN.

"When I pointed it out to her I said, 'I have to tell you Mrs. Obama, up until today...this has always been referred to as Batali orange, but I think from today on we will call it 'Obama-Batali orange.'

"I think she got a little kick," he added.

The judges include cookbook author and chef Nigella Lawson, Olympic gold medal swimmer Natalie Coughlin and actress Jane Seymour.

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