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[01/04/12 - 11:36 AM]
Food Network Premieres New Series "Fat Chef" and Returns With a New Season of "Heat Seekers" in January
"Heat Seekers" returns Monday, January 16 at 8:00/7:00c while "Fat Chef" launches Thursday, January 26 at 10:00/9:00c.

[via press release from Food Network]

FOOD NETWORK PREMIERES NEW SERIES "FAT CHEF" AND RETURNS WITH A NEW SEASON OF "HEAT SEEKERS" IN JANUARY

Fat Chef Premieres Thursday, January 26th at 10:00pm ET/PT

Heat Seekers Premieres Monday, January 16th at 8:00pm ET/PT

NEW YORK, NY - January 4, 2012 - Food Network primetime heats up 2012 with eight new episodes of Heat Seekers beginning Monday, January 16th at 8pm ET/PT. Aarón Sanchez and Roger Mooking are back to spice things up and see who can handle the heat in this tongue-torching odyssey to discover the most deliciously spicy food across the country. Over the course of the season Roger and Aarón's journey to experience the spiciest dishes take them to restaurants in Atlanta, Dallas, Kansas City, Las Vegas, Nashville, San Diego, Tampa and Washington, D.C. With a high-stakes challenge at the end, the winner gets bragging rights, and the loser suffers a little public humiliation.

New series Fat Chef gives viewers an inside look at the struggle chefs face when their love for food becomes overwhelming and affects their health. Premiering Thursday, January 26th at 10pm ET/PT, the six episode series follows twelve overweight culinary professionals from Illinois, New Jersey, New York, and Ohio on their four-month venture to overcome weight issues with the help of therapists, nutritionists, and trainers. Each episode will include two chefs working with their health consultant, including Christine Avanti (nutritionist, author of Skinny Chicks Eat Real Food), Robert Brace (dubbed as one of New York's "top fitness gurus") and Brett Hoebel (previously one of the trainers on The Biggest Loser), as they look to defeat their abusive relationship with food and regain control of their lives.

Episodes include:

HEAT SEEKERS:

Premiering Monday, January 16 at 8:00pm - SEASON PREMIERE! "Dallas" Chefs Aarón Sanchez and Roger Mooking hit Dallas for a tongue-torching challenge of Hotter than Hell sliders - and the loser looks like a clown. Literally. Plus, the duo taste test Texas-style "Wangs" and creole-style enchiladas with ghost pepper sauce. Restaurants visited include: Buttons Restaurant, The Alligator Café, and Rooster's Roadhouse.

Premiering Monday, January 23 at 8:00pm "Las Vegas" With a name like Fire-Breathing Dragon, there's definitely going to be heat. Roger Mooking and Aarón Sanchez face off to see who can handle the hottest sushi roll on the Vegas strip, and somebody's going to really lose his shirt. Plus, the two sweat it out with a Mexican chicken dish, "Cry Today, Cry Tomorrow" and tasty, Jalapeno-drenched potato twisters. Restaurants visited include: LBS Burger Joint, Lindo Michoacán and Rice & Company.

Premiering Monday, January 30 at 8:00pm "San Diego" In San Diego, Chefs Aarón Sanchez and Roger Mooking tackle the hottest pepper they've ever tasted. It's a Naga Viper-drenched pork carnitas challenge with the loser singing for his food, Mariachi-style. Plus, they visit Charger football legend Junior Seau's restaurant for the hottest Ahi Poke in Southern California, and both turn up the heat with an island fiery favorite, mango pepper shrimp. Restaurants visited include: Seau's The Restaurant, Mama Jamaica's and Café Coyote.

FAT CHEF:

Premiering Thursday, January 26 at 10:00pm - SEASON PREMIERE! "Michael/Melba" Michael Mignano is a 36-year-old, morbidly obese pastry chef from Long Island with a dangerous fast food addiction. As he hovers around 500 pounds, his life and health are in dire straits. Meanwhile, Harlem soul food maven Melba Wilson is a single mom wrestling with obesity of her own, as she deprives herself during the day and binges at night. Both blame their extreme weight on long hours, stress, and constant temptation synonymous with the food industry. Their weight is putting their lives in serious danger. Now they are doing something about it - following them over sixteen weeks, Michael and Melba attempt to reassess their relationships to food. With the help of Robert Brace working with Michael and Christine Avanti working with Melba, these chefs will try to lose 25% of their body weight and regain control of their lives.

Premiering Thursday, February 2 at 10:00pm "Rocco/Kim" Cleveland-based chef Rocco Whalen weighs more than 300 pounds and can't seem to put the brakes on his nonstop eating, while fellow overweight Cleveland caterer Kimberly McCune Gibson samples her decadent dishes all day and binges on takeout at night. Both blame their obesity on having no time to cook for themselves or exercise, and they need help to take back control of their health. With the goal of losing 25% of their body weight in sixteen weeks, Rocco and Kimberly will work under the guidance of Brett Hoebel. Can they conquer their cravings and learn time management, or will their jobs continue to destroy their bodies and lives?

Premiering Thursday, February 9 at 10:00pm "Ally/Mike" Ally Vitella is a New York City caterer who is addicted to the delectable party food she serves every day. Mike Digby is a line cook at a Chicago bistro who can't get enough of the mouth-watering burgers and fries he churns out every night. Both chefs weigh more than 300 pounds and can't control themselves around their own food. The food industry is killing them but they are determined to lose more than 75 pounds each over sixteen weeks without jeopardizing the careers they love. With the help of Christine Avanti working with Ally and Brett Hoebel working with Mike, they will attempt to relearn everything they know about food and exercise in order to transform their bodies and save their lives.

# # #

FOOD NETWORK (www.foodnetwork.com) is a unique lifestyle network, website and magazine that connects viewers to the power and joy of food. The network strives to be viewers' best friend in food and is committed to leading by teaching, inspiring and empowering through its talent and expertise. Food Network is distributed to more than 100 million U.S. households and averages more than 9.9 million unique web users monthly. Since launching in 2009, Food Network Magazine has tripled its rate base and delivers a circulation of 1.25 million. Headquartered in New York, Food Network has a growing international presence with programming in more than 150 countries, including 24 hour networks in Great Britain, India, Asia and Africa. Scripps Networks Interactive (NYSE: SNI), which also owns and operates Cooking Channel (www.cookingchanneltv.com), DIY Network (www.diynetwork.com), Great American Country (www.gactv.com), HGTV (www.hgtv.com), and Travel Channel (www.travelchannel.com), is the manager and general partner.





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· FAT CHEF (FOOD)
· HEAT SEEKERS (FOOD)











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