After the World Health Organization (WHO) declared COVID-19 as a global pandemic, several social restrictions on outdoor activities were applied, including the closing order or restricting opening hours for restaurants, cafes, and other eating-out establishments.
Such restrictions have undoubtedly impacted the people's social life.
Stuck at home in the wake of tough measures to rein in the spread of coronavirus, millions of people are discovering an unexpected interest in cooking, with restaurants closed nationwide in some countries.
Consequently, several people are flocking to view regular broadcasts by chefs to gain an understanding of how to prepare certain dishes.
Such a social phenomenon is apparent from the rise in downloads of recipe apps and the audience cooking and food-related contents, such as in China.
For instance, downloads of the top five recipe apps more than doubled in February to 2.25 million at China's app stores, such as Xiachufang, from January's one million, according to research firm Sensor Tower.
Furthermore, in the month since the virus outbreak began late in December, cooking and food-related content drew more than 580 million views on its platform, Chinese video streaming firm Bilibili stated, as quoted by Reuters.
All this makes it increasingly evident that cooking and food-related shows can be such a useful "tool" for people to cope with the prolonged pandemic.
Be it is a tutorial or competition, it is clear that watching other people cook is enjoyable for viewers regardless of whether they are active in their own kitchen.
Moreover, viewers fancy watching some food explorers enjoy several mouth-watering delicious meals.
The reason why culinary shows are so comforting and enjoyable for viewers has not been scientifically studied, but "Secrets From Eating Lab" book’s author Traci Mann, a professor of social and health psychology at the University of Minnesota, has some views.
"While watching a food show, you get to see a project come together from start to finish, which can be very satisfying," she remarked.
Cooking or culinary show fans typically fall into two categories: those who want to learn and also enjoy being entertained and those who care about everything but the elements of how to do it.
Such an audience may appreciate the fact-based information provided by the chef and contestants but especially pay attention to the taste.
So for fans and viewers out there, here are the top five must-watch food and culinary shows curated by ANTARA:
1. Chef's Table
In this Emmy-nominated series, viewers can watch culinary stars across the world that are redefining gourmet food through innovative dishes and tantalizing desserts.
In this culinary show, some of the most renowned chefs in the world share their deeply personal stories, inspirations, and unique styles. Each chef's discipline and culinary talent is explored while he or she prepares an awe-inspiring creation.
2. Street Food
Street Food is an American documentary that premiered on Netflix on April 26, 2019. Created by David Gelb and Brian McGinn, it explores street food from across the world.
In this food-related television show, viewers can embark on a global cultural journey into street food and discover the stories of people, who create the flavorful dishes.
Archival footage is combined with face-to-face interviews and follows street food chefs and their history, which is intertwined with the big picture of how influential street food is in their native country.
3. The Big Family Cooking Showdown
Cooking a meal together can be a great way to bond with a significant other and spend some quality time together. This especially becomes more appealing since you would get to enjoy the food together afterwards.
However, in this unscripted series, families passionate about food serve up their most delicious dishes for the chance to be crowned Britain's best home cooks.
The Big Family Cooking Showdown, often referred to as simply Cooking Showdown or BFCS, was a BBC team cooking competition hosted by Great British Bake Off winner Nadiya Hussain and Zoe Ball.
The competition takes place over eight heats, three semifinals, and one final, with each of the heats split into three categories: the 10 pound sterling challenge, the home visits challenge, and the impress-the-neighbors challenge.
As the rounds go on, the families have to impress some judges in order to progress in the competition before one family claims the crown in the final.
4. Best Leftovers Ever!
This is a cooking show where three home chefs, who are experienced at making great meals out of leftovers, are challenged to work with whatever leftovers they are given to create high-end, well-presented dishes.
In this show, home cooks compete to transform leftovers into delicious creations, finding ways to give old leftovers new life, all in the hopes of winning a US$10,000 prize.
From this cooking show, the audience can also get ideas about what can be done with their leftover food at home instead of discarding it.
5. Breakfast, Lunch, & Dinner
In this show, Chef David Chang takes his insatiable curiosity for food, culture, and identity on the road in the convivial company of fun-loving celebrity guests.
Along with celebrity guests, Chef Chang explores the cuisine and culture of different cities across the world.
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