This story is part of , our podcast featuring interviews with actors, artists, celebrities and creative types about their work, career and current obsessions.
Despite its convenience, comfort and affordability, fast food tends to have a bad reputation. Three chefs are out to change that by celebrating the best fast-food items out there. On the TruTV show Fast Foodies award-winning chefs Kristen Kish, Jeremy Ford and Justin Sutherland, who you might know best from shows like Top Chef and Iron Chef, re-create a celebrity’s favorite fast-food item and then make their own “remix” version of it.
For example, in one episode actor and comedian Bobbie Lee shares that his favorite fast-food item is the Sausage Egg McMuffin from McDonalds. The three chefs first make the breakfast sandwich as authentically as possible, and then each serves the comedian a Sausage Egg McMuffin remix dish. Kish made ricotta raviolo with prosciutto. Ford served up an egg yolk brioche with gravy. And Sutherland prepared soft scrambled eggs with maple Mornay.
Unlike other competitive food shows, Fast Foodies isn’t cutthroat. The chefs and the celebrity guests seem to have an absolute blast. That fun was on full display when Kish, Ford and Sutherland joined me on CNET’s I’m So Obsessed podcast. They told me the show works well because they can’t hide. The cameras pick up everything they do and say, which is often very funny.
“In some of the episodes, there’s stuff that they [TruTv] air that normally shouldn’t have been aired,” said Kish. “It’s almost like your blooper reel. I don’t think we paid attention, which is why it works so well.”
Featured fast-food items run the gamut from pizza and burgers to fried chicken and fried fish sandwiches. Despite the enormous number of beloved fast-food items out there, Kish and Sutherland agree that Arby’s has two items that don’t need improving.
“I don’t think there’s anything better than an Arby’s Beef N’ Cheddar,” said Iron Chef winner Sutherland. “If it showed up on Fast Foodies, I’d just put it right back on the plate, because it’s perfect.”
“I’ve never personally made curly fries, but I’m with Justin here,” said Top Chef winner Kish. “Arby’s seasoned curly fries are everything to me. There’s no way in hell I can make that better.”
On the other hand, Ford, also a Top Chef winner, says there isn’t a fast-food item that’s untouchable.
You can listen to my entire conversation with Kish, Ford and Sutherland in the podcast player above or on Apple Podcasts. The three discuss their Top Chef and Iron Chef fame, their restaurants and, of course, fast food.
The season 1 finale of Fast Foodies airs Thursday on TruTV. You can subscribe to I’m So Obsessed on your favorite podcast app. In each episode, Connie Guglielmo or I catch up with an artist, actor or creator to learn about work, career and current obsessions.