How do you make the mundane magnificent? Think outside the box. I'm a big fan of a show called Iron Chef. If you've never seen it it's a Japanese cooking show that was so outside the box it's initial idea has been reworked many times over the years.
Rather than just have a chef in the kitchen talking and preparing dishes like the old classic chefs (Graham Kerr and Julia Child) they turned it into a competition. Two chefs battling it out with the same main ingredient. However where the the current versions don't quite measure up to the original is with the back story.
The premise of this show was the obscenely rich Chairman Kaga. Kaga spent his fortune to create Kitchen stadium where the Iron Chefs would battle it out with a new challenger each week using a theme ingredient to create the dishes. this was not a cooking show it was a sportscast complete with commentators and a panel judging the dishes at the end of the show.
The out of the box thinking didn't end there the chefs were often over the top too in some of their creations. Squid ink soup with ravioli? Fish ice cream? Both of those dishes were created and served.
However that one little out of the box idea has taken root and spawned all sorts of variations on the theme like Chopped and Throwdown with Bobby Flay. Not to mention Iron Chef America which is qn American clone of the original. At least they do have original Iron Chef Morimoto and Bobby Flay who was a two time challenger on the original.
I still like the original better than the rest. But the lesson here is that somewhere in Japan one day a lightbulb went off over someone's head. An out of the box idea became a reality and has influenced the way we look at cooking shows. It's not just the housewife looking for new recipes that watch. Anyone can watch Iron Chef and find it fun and entertaining. They took the mundane and made it interesting.