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Oh man, I can’t wait to see over-exposed celebrity chef Amanda Freitag suffer the indignity of being forced to dish out a professional appetizer in 30 minutes using squid brains, candy cane, and ramps.  If that makes no sense to you, you aren’t addicted to Chopped on the Food Network the way my family is.

Cooking shows, and cooking competitions, seem to suddenly be everywhere…like here , here or here.  FN, and their successful spawn Cooking Channel (with their uber elegant tag line, “Stay Hungry”), are smoking hot.  Food obsession isn’t new, and neither are food competitions – bbq slams, chili cookoffs, and baking contests have been around forever – but how will they trickle down to the Internet, to UGC?  Do cooking contests make good brand promotions on the web?  We think so.

Maybe it’s the economy…food makes everyone feel better, after all…or maybe it’s the national obsession with health and quality ingredients, which seem to be the main story lines in these shows, but we think you’re going to start seeing more invites from your friends asking you to vote for them in cooking competitions online in the near future.

And just to prove the point, I’ll add this one pointer to what Perdue and Fleishman Hillard are doing with Shycast:

Enjoy, and “Stay Hungry”.