Selena + Chef
Cozy, Quarantine-Style TV Comfort Food
Streaming on HBO Max | 2020 | TV-PG | 2 seasons
Genre: Cozy, quarantine-style cooking show Why We Watched: I've had very little capacity to start new shows lately. I've watched comfort TV and TV that shows me how to make comfort food. Selena + Chef falls into both categories! After browsing around for a new low-stress show, the series caught my eye and I've been hooked ever since.
You Might Also Like: Please watch The Great British Baking Show if you haven't already. It's warm and fuzzy with just a dash of competition. (It's hard to feel like it's really cutthroat when the contestants help each other finish their bakes.) If you've seen all of these seasons on Netflix, perhaps check out Britain's Best Home Cook?
Selena Gomez is talented at many things. Cooking, however, is not one of them. The premise of Selena + Chef is very simple. When the pandemic started last year, she wanted to ramp up her cooking skills—so she asked some of the best chefs to join her for a virtual cooking lesson. Each week, someone new drops into Selena's kitchen and teaches her how to make a few dishes that are easy and accessible for home cooks. Unlike most cooking shows, Selena + Chef is aimed at total amateurs. Guest chefs ranging from José Andrés to Roy Choi to Candice Kumai share basic tips—like how to hold a knife—that anyone can use in their kitchen. (The knife skills are key for Gomez, who is... very scary holding a knife in season one. Like "you are going to cut off your finger" scary.) Although the dishes get more complicated in season two, the ingredients are all something you'd find in your local grocery store. You too can make ramen from home! The food is tasty and comforting, but the cameos from Gomez's friends and family are what gives the show a home-grown feel. BFF Raquelle, Nana and Papa, and their dogs wander in and out of the kitchen, giving our host comedic foils amid otherwise stressful cooking tasks. It's a simple, but helpful addition—like when Chef Ludo asks Gomez to test the stiffness of her egg whites by tipping the bowl over Papa's head. Or, for those of you like me who've had Folklore on repeat this year, I was thrilled to see that she FaceTimed Taylor Swift to show off her tacos. To top it all off, Gomez's kitchen might give you some inspiration for your next home decorating project. It's Anthropologie meets farmhouse glam with a rainbow knife set that's had the internet buzzing. So if you're looking for an activity to look forward to this weekend, look no further: turn on Selena + Chef and then hop into the kitchen to give her breakfast tacos or spicy miso ramen a try. Happy cooking, y'all! Tess