In January 2006, after moving to New York’s Hell’s Kitchen and spending under a month making the small cooking blog Food Muse, Grace Piper decided that it was time to turn her blog into a vlog. The first and only episode of Food Muse, a cooking show which talks about the history and inspiration for various dishes, was posted January 20, 2006. But Grace wasn’t finished and decided to move her videos in a more dangerous direction. While she continued posting to the blog, in May 2006 Grace released the first episode of Fearless Cooking, a vlog that takes reader-submitted trepidations about home cooking and explores the variety of projects viewers can do in the kitchen if they forget theirfears and figure out how to spatchcock a chicken.

Filmed by a cameraman with a shaky hand, most videos are 2 to 5 minutes long, straight to the point, shot almost entirely in Grace’s Hell’s Kitchen apartment (except when she goes on trips) and edited with a knack for speed and funky cooking music. Although the updates are infrequent, the show is worth watching for Grace’s obvious enthusiasm for conquering culinary fears and the simple recipes that use unusual ingredients. However, this is not a straightforward cooking show. This is about cooking adventurously and occasionally failing, as in this recipe for grilled squid that “smells bad and tastes like wet leather” (Although the recipe for mojitos, which was shown before cooking the squid in order to make the cooking of the squid a little bit easier, appeared to go over well).

I have to confess that I was a little nauseous and not at all hungry after watching the squid dissection, but I was also riveted in a Discovery Channel sort of way.

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