I am new to the chowhound boards so please excuse me, but I would like to know as lovers of the food and dining realm, what are we actually learning from a show like 'Iron Chef.' How is it possible for the chefs involved not to know what the 'secret ingredient' is in advance. We don't ever see them running down a quick menu with their staffs. (I don't believe it for a second.) How is it possible to maintain such an extraordinary 'mise en place', just about every thing in the food chain and equipment arsenal is available to the participating chefs. And to make a long blog short, why do the chefs involved feel compeled to prepare a dessert dish out of any secret ingredient involved...fish foam brulee, anyone? And some of the judges...please! What happened to those second rate Asian actresses?
I do, however, find the show fine as a form of entertainment, only after the host is finished with his opening bite bit. What is the true mission statement here?