I like a bit of background telly. Let me paint the picture for you as I write this. As I fumble about on a keyboard that is still inexplicably as unfamiliar to me as my neighbours, my cat is asleep with his head in my handbag, my washing machine is making much more noise than the salesman promised it would, and I have one eye on Channel 4’s new massive advert What’s Cooking? I am also planning a cake.
First off I’m disappointed that the theme music for its new lunchtime daily "cook and chat" show doesn’t start with "Hey, good looking", like someone once sang on a 1980s advert for Lean Cuisine. That was at the very beginning of the oven meal/microwave revolution.
I have to say that until recently I was very much still living in the world of progging with forks and peeling back lids. But then I moved into a place with a nice kitchen and decided to learn to cook. Hence my mild addiction to cookery programmes.
What’s Cooking? is very similar to when I cook with friends around, although there’s less shushing when recipes need to be consulted and they need to introduce more swearing and phoning in takeaways. And the smoke alarm going off because the grill needs cleaning at least once a week.
The show is presented by daytime TV stalwart Ben Shephard and actress and chef Lisa Faulkner. Seeing Lisa in a kitchen makes me tense, as anyone who saw her demise in Spooks via a deep-fat fryer will appreciate.
Ben and Lisa encourage viewers to send in pictures of their lunch during the show, but either their audience is posher than me or they filter out the pictures from people like me who watched yesterday’s episode while picking the green bits off my bread.
The fact that the whole programme is sponsored by Sainsbury’s rankles a little. One of the chefs even goes to the shop to buy ingredients for his challenges and we see unsuspecting shoppers smelling things in the background. If they want to show a supermarket, they should show the good stuff.
I recently saw an opened double pack of pregnancy tests on a toilet cistern at my local Asda, alongside a Calippo wrapper. I suppose you have to kill those minutes somehow. You might as well be quenching your thirst. And there was once a poo in an aisle at the same supermarket with a security guard standing over it. It was unclear whether he was protecting us or it.
I’m glad they settled on that title, though. Much better than "What’s that smell?" or "Is that you?"
Sarah's stand-up DVD, Thoroughly Modern Millican Live, is now available at amazon.co.uk