Ted Allen Weighed In On Chopped's Ice Cream Machine Controversy

It seems the Twitterverse has chimed in about the monstrous machinery that passes for an ice cream machine on "Chopped." This isn't the first time social media users have expressed their consternation over the single piece of equipment that holds the fate of so many "Chopped" competitors in its hands. In 2013, an unattributed letter posted on Reddit implored the powers-that-be at Chopped, "For the love of all that is Holy, why don't you get another ice cream maker?" Indeed, the venerable beast has seen its share of mishaps. A Youtube feature recounts a few — like a spoon in the machine and a failure to turn it on — and shows judges uttering about "unhappy sounds" and even Martha Stewart herself dubbing one contestant's experiences as "total chaos."

So why is there only one ice cream machine? Marcus Samuelsson gave a nod to that particular chaos in an interview with Food & Wine. He attributed the singular convection-creator to the show's desire to create a semi-chaotic tone. Alex Guarnaschelli echoed this sentiment, parlaying that the intense food competition show was just that, a competition show, not a "country club." And when a Twitter user took the chaos-inducing limitations of having just one ice cream machine to a different level, labeling the show's hosts "secretly sadistic," Ted Allen apparently could not resist shooting back.

Relishing in the chaos

Tim Allen, the Emmy-winner, host, and trendsetter, tweeted, "Secretly sadistic? Proudly, you mean." He responded to one tweeter's claim that he was "about to start a GoFundMe for Chopped to get a second ice cream machine" by adding, "Save your breath, people-12 years and counting, it's NOT GONNA HAPPEN. Start a fundraiser for someone who needs it." In another tweet, Allen confirmed that it wasn't about the cha-ching, saying, "Not only can we afford another ice cream machine, we already have at least two spares waiting just off set, in case one of them breaks."

Another Chopped judge, Marc Murphy, attributes the many ice cream flops on the show not to the machine itself but to the users' incompetence when utilizing it. So instead of crying over the spilled-milk mess that often marks the ice cream machine's misadventures, perhaps prospective competitors should familiarize themselves with the machine's intricacies? And the Twitterverse might consider embracing the situation and relishing in the chaos and inherent ice cream catastrophes that make "Chopped" the delightful spectacle of culinary talent and nail-biting drama that it truly is.