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January 13, 2010

White House vegetable garden: stunt doubles

White House vegetable garden

Photo courtesy of The Food Network

Bird-dogging investigative journalists tells us that the vegetables used in the Jan. 3 episode of the Iron Chef -- which were supposed to have been harvested from the White House vegetable garden -- were actually stunt doubles.

And Lynn Sweet, who writes the Daily Flotus blog for Politics Daily asks why the viewing audience was misled? 

Apparently, the time lag between the White House harvest scene filmed in October and the cooking competition filmed a week later in New York was too great for the vegetables to have remained fresh.

First Lady Michelle Obama famously appeared with competitors Bobbie Flay, Emeril Lagasse and Mario Batalli, who were joined by White House chef Cristeta Comerford, and charged them with making healthy meals with whatever they could find in the garden.

Marion Burros of the New York Times and Eddie Gehman Kohan of the revealed the use of "stunt doubles" in November.

And all would have been well if the chefs had not misled the audience during the show with references to vegetables "from the White House vegetable garden."

In fact, only honey from the garden was used in the show, and the vegetables harvested by the television chefs that day were donated.

The episode went on to be the most watched show ever on the Food Network, but the revelations that substitute vegetables had been used succeeded in bringing the haters out of the woodwork, who used it as another example of the Obama Administration's, ummmm, how shall I put this, lack of transparency.

Which goes to show you that all politics, and all vegetables, are local.

Posted by Susan Reimer at 2:04 PM | | Comments (2)
Categories: White House Vegetable Garden



I know. I am sighing, too. -- Susan

Another case of TV "magic." I think this has little to no relevance to the Obama administration though. Just a problem of logistical constraints, don't act so betrayed haha.

I think you're right! -- Susan

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About Susan Reimer
Susan Reimer has spent 16 years writing about raising kids - among other topics - in her column for The Baltimore Sun. And every time son Joseph or daughter Jessie passed another milestone - driver's license, college, wedding or a move to a new military duty station - she has planted another garden. Now she will be writing about those gardens - and yours - here on Garden Variety.

Susan isn't an expert gardener, but she wasn't an expert mother, either. Both - the kids and the gardens - seem to be doing well in spite of her.

She lives in Annapolis with her husband, Gary Mihoces, who loves to cut his grass but has noticed that there seems to be less of it every time the kids pass another milestone.

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