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TV: G is for...

Galloping Gourmet, The

Kerr your enthusiasmIN AN AGE where even crisps are no longer safe from having their ingredients meddled with in order to become 70% more healthy or something, it’s assuredly worth reflecting upon an era when affable bouncing bon viveur GRAHAM KERR would frolic onto our screens every afternoon, running through the ITV daytime line-up like a skewer and, along with CROWN COURT and AFTERNOON PLUS, make up a kind of tasty entertainment kebab. Very much a cross between George Hamilton and Robert Carrier, Kerr would gambol onto his Schreiber red kitchen set (somewhere in Australia, judging by that kind of early smudgy colour picture quality) and get down to work. Work being creating the most cholesterol-packed, artery-congesting meal humanly possible. This being the seventies, the average Kerr menu resembled what was on offer down at your local Berni Inn; a time when Coq Au Vin and Chicken Maryland were the height of Cinzano’n’Milk Tray Man-style glamour. But with lots of cream. Lots and lots of cream. However, central to the compelling nature of GG was Kerr’s splendidly flirty repartee with his (mainly female) audience: “why not make this for your husband, girls, and have a special night, eh?”. Crowning glory came when Kerr would invite one lucky blushing audience member to share his latest culinary concoction at an on-stage, candle-lit table. Whether or not this rendezvous would continue post-show is unclear.

5 Comments

5 Comments

  1. Paul

    September 28, 2009 at 2:29 pm

    And let us not forget his ‘short slurp’ that signified the commercial break. Said slurps apparently becoming longer and longer. Oh, and the wonderful gurning when he sampled his own food – the male equivalent of the ‘When Harry Met Sally’ orgasm scene.

  2. Matt

    October 11, 2009 at 10:16 pm

    In the States, he was commercial television’s answer to Julia Child (aka The French Chef), the big, goofy lady who spilled things and wielded a meat cleaver with almost ghoulish delight. Unlike Kerr, she never lost her devotion to butter or really good pastry. Of course, unlike Kerr, she never developed heart problems. As for Kerr, even if you disapprove of his later turn towards healthier cooking, he was still a lot of fun to watch. Alas, his later shows didn’t have a studio audience, so he couldn’t invite anyone to stage to join him for a glass of carrot juice . . .

  3. doris

    August 27, 2010 at 8:53 pm

    Graham Kerr has now realised the error of his ways, with a vengeance, after his missus had a heart attack. He now makes cookery books with nary a dollop of grease and is particularly fond of something called MEV, for moulded ethnic vegetable. mmmmm sounds delicious.
    I pinched the following from wikipedia-

    In 1996, Kerr, in his book of that year called Swiftly Seasoned, created the concept of a “Moulded Ethnic Vegetable”, a baked combination of starches and vegetables seasoned with flavours characteristic of different ethnic cuisines. The “MEV”, as he referred to it in recipes, was intended to remedy what he perceived as a lack of focus in vegetarian meals; according to Kerr, while omnivorous cuisine generally has a central focus in a meat dish, vegetarian plates are often little more than collections of side dishes, and the MEV was an attempt to provide a central focus for such meals. The MEV was not a widely successful concept and a business venture to manufacture and sell a muffin tin-like MEV baking pan was not successful. (While generally intended to be vegetarian, Kerr did incorporate meats into some MEV recipes in later books.)

    Gosh! His ethnic vegetables weren’t successful.

    doris

  4. Dave in Dover

    May 26, 2011 at 10:24 pm

    This was sickie from school telly at its best

  5. Richard16378

    May 27, 2011 at 1:26 pm

    I first heard of Julia Child when watching Julie / Julia.

    My Dad reckons she was as OTT as Meryl Streep played her.

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