Surely you’ve seen an episode or two (or 30) of Toronto-based Epic Meal Time on YouTube: the long-running show that poses ridiculously oversized culinary challenges and achieves them via humongous feasts. The question from popular podcast and video channel H3: why continue doing Epic Meal Time when food waste is such a hot topic?
It’s a multi-tiered answer, according to EMT founder Harley Morenstein (who just got into the jerky game), that depends on whether or not the epic meal of the day has been “contaminated.” It’s a problem found within plenty of food media outlets. When food is bought because it’s about to expire, or cooked to be photographed and doesn’t get the chance to come up to a USDA-approved final temperature during the baking process, for example, it isn’t salvageable.
“If you’re a production company, you feed people and someone gets sick, you don’t have insurance for that and you’re screwed,” he says.
But since EMT has a plethora of hungry hosts and crew, there’s usually at least a dozen people only too eager to devour the crazy mash-up feast at hand when it’s good to go, and it usually is.
“You’re filming for six hours, and people on-set are ready,” Morenstein attests. When the meal is truly too large for reasonable consumption, they call volunteers from local soup kitchens to come retrieve the leftovers. Epic Meal Time has also partnered with FeedingAmerica.org to re-home their epic fare.
“I asked [the soup kitchen volunteers] what they were going to make with it,” says Morenstein, referring to the meat from six leftover whole pigs (the cast and crew could only finish two). “They said ‘soup for a year.'”
Check out the segment below, and rest assured that everyone’s unnecessarily adept YouTube chefs are covering their bases while getting it as right as they can. And honestly, we’d get down with that delicious-looking Pull-Apart Quesadilla…loaf thing.