Saturday Kitchen

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Saturday Kitchen
Genre Cookery
Presented by Gregg Wallace (2002–03)
Antony Worrall Thompson (2003–06)
James Martin (2006–16)
Guest presenters (2016—)
Country of origin United Kingdom
No. of episodes 485 (as of 3 December 2016) (Cactus TV episodes only)
Production
Running time 90 minutes
Production company(s) Prospect Pictures (2002–06)
Cactus TV (2006–)
Release
Original network BBC Two (2002–06)
BBC One (2006–)
Picture format 576i (16:9 SDTV)
1080i (HDTV)
Original release 26 January 2002 (2002-01-26) – present
Chronology
Related shows Saturday Cooks!

Saturday Kitchen is a 90-minute cookery programme, which is broadcast live on BBC One on Saturday mornings.

History[edit]

2002–2003[edit]

After a pilot hosted by Ainsley Harriott in early 2001,[1] the show was launched on 26 January 2002 and was originally broadcast as a BBC production for the Open University under a educational remit. It was hosted by Gregg Wallace, then a relatively unknown presenter. He was joined by a celebrity chef each week in a pre-recorded format and with a low budget, utilised archived content from the likes of Keith Floyd and Rick Stein to fill the show. After the first series, a second series went out live.

2003–2006[edit]

After the success of the first two series, the programme was relaunched with established celebrity chef Antony Worrall Thompson as the host, initially guest hosting from May before taking over on 13 September. The format was tweaked, moving away from the educational remit and simple meals to more aspirational food with an increase in chefs, a number of whom had Michelin stars, and celebrity guests. The BBC archive was retained for the revamped format, with Worrall Thompson and the guest chefs preparing dishes, with the clips used to allow clean-up and "resetting" of the studio kitchen.

During the summer of 2004, the programme temporarily moved to BBC One and aired as Saturday Brunch, live from Worrall Thompson's home.[2] Subsequently, in January 2006, the show moved from BBC Two to BBC One on a three month trial that became permanent, a decision which drew controversy after the moving of children's programming from its regular slot on the channel for the first time since the 1970s.[3][4]

2006–2016[edit]

After Worrall Thompson left the network to present Saturday Cooks! in June 2006, James Martin took over as host from 24 June. During Martin's tenure, the audience increased from 1.2 million to around 3 million, peaking at 2.7 million on 9 January 2010.

On 8 September 2012, the first episode was broadcast from a new studio set, which saw a new design and the addition of mains gas and running water.

On 23 February 2016, James announced that he would be leaving the show to concentrate on other commitments, and "to have a lie in" on a Saturday.[5]

Among those to cover in Martin's absence were: Tom Kerridge, Tony Singh, Rick Stein, Matt Tebbutt, Cyrus Todiwala, John Torode, Brian Turner, and Valentine Warner.

2016–present[edit]

Since 2 April 2016, Saturday Kitchen has been hosted by various presenters.[6]

On 5 November 2016, the Saturday Kitchen team stated that Donal Skehan, Matt Tebbutt, Michel Roux Jr, Angela Hartnett, and John Torode would serve as regular presenters.[7]

On 3 December 2016, Michel Roux Jr stated while closing the show, that he will be back hosting in January.

Future[edit]

As part of the tender for the production of the programme released in October 2016, it was confirmed that the show and Best Bites will remain on air until March 2020, airing 52 episodes and 50 episodes per year respectively. It also confirmed the show will remain live and continue to feature guest chefs and archive content, but may see changes to the presenters.[8]

Features[edit]

Each show typically includes a host chef and two guest chefs, each cooking in the studio. They are joined by a celebrity guest, usually on to promote a forthcoming or current project.

Each guest chefs dish is paired with a wine chosen by an expert. The experts include: Susy Atkins, Susie Barrie, Sam Caporn, Sandia Chang, Jane Parkinson, Peter Richards, and Olly Smith.

In between each studio dish, footage is shown from the BBC Archives. The footage is from a range of well-known chefs series, these have included: The Hairy Bikers, Tom Kerridge, Rick Stein, and former host James Martin.

Before the introduction of the Heaven and Hell feature, the programme previously featured Worrall Thompson and guest chefs pitching a dish to be cooked, which the public voted on and a running total of wins recorded by using fridge magnets.

Omelette Challenge[edit]

Each week, the guest chefs are challenged to cook a three-egg omelette, as quickly as possible.

The current record holder is Theo Randall with a time of 14.76 seconds, set on 2 May 2015.

The achievement was recognised by Guinness World Records and Randall is officially the world's fastest omelette maker.[9]

Heaven or Hell[edit]

Each show concludes with the host and guest chefs cooking the celebrity guest a dish containing their favourite or least-favourite ingredient/s.

Which dish is cooked depends on a vote. Each viewer that has called in during the show to ask the guest chefs and host a culinary question or conundrum, chooses which dish they would like to see cooked, as does each guest chef.

The selection is also wine-paired.

Celebrity guests[edit]

Among those to have faced Heaven or Hell include:

Guest chefs[edit]

The programme attracts many highly-acclaimed chefs, award-winning, and popular chefs. These have included:

Controversies[edit]

In June 2006, it was revealed that host Antony Worrall Thompson was to defect to ITV to host a similar cooking show in the same slot, Saturday Cooks!, though later rescheduled to noon. In addition to his defecting, the new show was to be made by the Saturday Kitchen producer, Prospect Pictures. In light of the changes, the programme was revamped with new host James Martin and new producer Cactus TV.

At the same time, a new Heaven or Hell feature was introduced, which saw the celebrity guest provide their heaven and hell ingredients for two recipes, with the public phoning in to vote for the choice to be cooked at the end of the show. A sister show to the new Worral Thompson show, Sunday Feast, had a similar feature at its launch, a week before the new feature was introduced as part of the revamp to the programme. The idea was, however, first announced 3 weeks before the launch of the revamped programme.

In February 2007, the programme was accused of misleading viewers to phone in to an apparently live segment, which was found to have been pre-recorded a week earlier.[10]

Spin-offs[edit]

The programme has produce a number of spin off series, including Spring Kitchen, Christmas Kitchen and Saturday Kitchen: Best Bites, a compilation programme currently airing on Sunday mornings on BBC Two, as well as the "Saturday Kitchen Cookbook with James Martin," published by BBC Books in July 2007.

Spring Kitchen with Tom Kerridge[edit]

Spring Kitchen with Tom Kerridge
Genre Cookery
Presented by Tom Kerridge
Country of origin United Kingdom
No. of series 1
No. of episodes 14
Production
Running time 45 minutes
Release
Original network BBC One
Picture format 576i (16:9 SDTV)
1080i (HDTV)
Original release 22 April 2014 (2014-04-22) – present

Spring Kitchen was a weekday daytime spin-off of Saturday Kitchen presented by chef Tom Kerridge.

Guests

Christmas Kitchen[edit]

Christmas Kitchen is a weekday daytime spin-off of Saturday Kitchen presented by Matt Tebbutt and Andi Oliver. It will air for two weeks in the run up to Christmas 2016.[11]

References[edit]

External links[edit]