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Review: Food Network Canada Mobile App for BlackBerry

By Ryan Blundell on 5 Jan 2010 08:09 am EST
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food network

The best part of big family dinners is, of course, the food. Admit it or not, we like to see what everyone is bringing, and what to avoid like the plague. I can’t say much for myself; I’m hovering around below average for my cooking skills (my wife can attest to that). Despite the lack of knowledge in the kitchen, I do fully support her adventurous palate. When you are trying to focus on eating healthier, you may initially think that your choices are quite limited. It’s this mindset that may cause you to revert back to your poor eating habits; would you like fries with that? My wife and I started looking for ideas online, in a magazine, or even from peeking in Momma Blundell’s super secret recipe cards/book. That last one runs the risk of the perpetrator getting hit by a wooden spoon. A great source of fun, facts, frustration (still fun for us) and food, is the Food Network and Food Network Canada. Your brain will salivate as much as your mouth will, when you watch the various reality and cooking shows.

Canadians can take all of this information with them in a doggy bag with the Food Network Canada Mobile application. More after the chomp, I mean, jump.

What’s cookin’ Food Network Canada Mobile?

Food Network Canada is operated by Canwest Broadcasting, a division of Canwest Media Inc. Canwest Media Inc is a subsidiary of Canwest Global Communications Corp; an international media company. The Food Network Canada Mobile app (which I will call the Food App for short) is powered by Polar Mobile Group Inc. You may recognize their name, as they have created mobile apps for companies that include: TIME, Sports Illustrated, ELLE Canada and BlackBerryCool. BlackBerry App World states that only Canadian carriers are supported. The current version of the application is 3.0.3 and requires 494.9KB of space.

The UI of the Food App decently reflects the design and feel of foodnetwork.ca, the red and white motif made me feel very patriotic, if not hungry for a new recipe. Near the top of the main menu are three tabs to choose from. The content/options for each tab will be displayed below. Here are the three options that are available:

Browse Recipes – this tabs content, though laid out like a website, is simply a large database of recipes with various ways to browse through it.

food network
Browse for recipes

The first method is to click on the ‘Recipe of the Day’ link. The link entices you with an image of the recipe, so be careful you don’t drool on your BlackBerry. The second method is a typical keyword search; simply enter in the keywords(s) and a list of results will generate. Please make note that not all results will display images. If I were to search BlackBerry, the first recipe I find is Blackberry Millefeuille. The third method is to select from a group of 6 icons, with each having access to a set of search filters. The six icons are: All Recipes, On TV, Quick & Easy, Healthy Living, Kid Friendly and Occasions & Events. For example, if I were to choose Healthy Living, I would be able to filter by the type of meal (ie breakfast), the course and the main ingredient. If I went with On TV, I can choose a show or Host, then by type of meal, course, etc.

food network
search

The fourth method is to view recipes through a selection of videos, which are streamed. Each video entry will include a screenshot and intro, with a Play Video button located at the bottom of the screen. Once you find recipes you are interested in, you can add them to...

...My Recipes – This tab will display all of my saved recipes. Think of it as a place to store your recipe cards after filling them out. Recipes cannot be shuffled around and can only be removed from this tab by opening the recipe and selecting ‘Remove’.

food network
my favourite recipes

Video – Another video feature. This tab grants you access to a few different video categories to browse through. The Tips and Advice section helps you find information on a variety of topics, from growing your own herb garden (don’t get any ideas people), to prolonging your knife’s lifespan. The Recipes section is a duplicate of the video search option found under the Browse Recipes tab. The Ingredients section promises to fill you in on topics that include: types of onions and how to cut them or what you should look for when picking up whole grain bread.

food network
watch videos

When looking at recipes in detail, you will see that the information is broken up in to three different areas. The first area is the Overview, where you will see a large image of the dish you are about to cook and devour (nom nom nom), the name of the program, where it originated from and the programs host. Some entries may also display the number of servings. The second area will list the ingredients needed, as well as the required measurement/amount. The third section is where Directions are found. Follow the steps carefully, as you might want to avoid burning down the house. Directions are broken down to paragraph form and numbered. For easier reading, I felt that they could have been broken down even further.

food network
list of ingredients
food network
don't forget to follow the instructions

I’m hungry already!

If I ever show up at your place with an empty food container, it’s probably because I got hungry on the way. We all know that it wasn’t one of my recipes, but one I found while using the Food Network Canada Mobile application. Take your time while browsing through meal ideas; you have over 10000 to look at. As I stated before, I found the directions a little difficult to read. Cooking instructions shouldn’t be so involved that you forget what you are making. You can pick up Food Network Canada Mobile for free from the BlackBerry App World.

Pros

  • More than 10K meal ideas
  • Videos and images at your finger tips
  • Save recipes for easy access

Cons

  • Directions need to be rewritten

More Info

26 comments

twassel

Presumably your wife has an adventurous palate, which is in her mouth. A pallet is a wooden sled used in warehouses.

KillYouWithMyMind

Big Brother is watching you Ryan. The next spelling or gramatical error found will result in capital punishment.

Kevin Michaluk

fixed. :)

i love when the first comment to a post is in regards to grammar or spelling.  that's why we make mistakes...just to get the comment train rolling. lol. well, not really, but it's a good excuse after the fact.

Ryan Blundell

I was just making sure someone was paying attention...yeah...that's it..

Thanks for pointing it out, I'll pay a little more attention next time when I'm reviewing a review :) 

I wonder if the application has a recipe for humble pie... 

OHBULLET

this app is cool but I wish they made one for us in usa

cenloe

...food so different in Canada?? Why does Canada need it's own Food Network? I attended U.B.C., Vancouver and can attest to the food not being all that different, except for the tasty Fried American. Yum...

TheDeej

That would be because of the CRTC's Canadian content regulations. We used to get the US feed of the Food Network but then Food Network Canada was developed to fulfill those regulations. While we do get a number of the US shows there are also some Canadian produced shows on the Canadian version.

AQucsaiJr

I just started using this app the beginning of the week... Seems great so far... I don't know what the difference would be between US and Canadian version but I think this one is a great start... I am looking forward to trying some of these recipes.

OHBULLET

Becuase in the us version they would have recipes from the host on our version of food network like rachel ray and paula dean

lazydogrex

Will this app tell me what's the difference between Canadian bacon and a slice of ham?

tekware

The last time I updated their app they blew away all my "saved" recipes. Thanks a bunch.
Any reinstall of the OS or upgrade to new OS loses all your "saved" recipes too. Apparently "saved" doesn't mean what it used to.

FunkyDog

I've been using this app since over a year back on my Bold and now on my Storm2. Most of the recipes are good as I've been cooking all my life. Trust me, its a good one to browse when you're out of ideas.

FunkyDog

I've been using this app since over a year back on my Bold and now on my Storm2. Most of the recipes are good as I've been cooking all my life. Trust me, its a good one to browse when you're out of ideas.

hunoosh

This app seems cool! S***s though.....one of my fav channels n no app for the US?

Smokeaire

Just because it is for the Canadian version of the TVFN doesn't mean that US BB users shouldn't be able to use it. After all good recipes are universal,unless some recipes require Polar Bear or Seal...then I might have to substitute.

mijinkiyo

If you don't live up north you could always go to http://www.foodnetwork.com/home/food-network-mobile/index.html and use that instead.

snowmancomic

Stupid newbie question here...Everytime I go to AppWorld on my Storm 2 it tells me that this application isn't compatible with my device or carrier? Any suggestions?

Ryan Blundell

It's not you. I just tested this out and App World says my Bold isn't compatible either, though it wasn't a problem before.

Visit http://m.foodnetwork.ca on your Storm 2

Smokeaire

Many months ago I know I had the app on my Curve, it worked just fine. Now it won't download to my Bold. Pity. I liked it.

snowmancomic

Thanks Ryan, that did the trick :)

dragonelf

I have experiencing the same download problems. I tried going to the website you recommended, but when I try to pull it up I get a timed out/server error. I would really like to try this app especially since I do work in the food industry, but I keep getting blocked. Any ideas?

EnergyPlus

I downloaded this app quite some time ago, back when I bought my Storm 1 on release day. I found myself using it all the time and it was one of the first apps I redownloaded when I upgraded to my Storm 2.

I particularly love it when I'm in the store and forget a particular ingredient. I can easily look up the recipe (and if I'm not making something from their book, I can find something reasonably close enough to remind me of the particular ingredients I might need to purchase).

All the recipes I've tried have been great. My only "wish" would be to see them increase the number of recipes they already have (never can have too many)!

EnergyPlus

Ok, just read through some of the comments. Why the concern over "but, this is a Canadian recipe page!" Um...and your point is? Do our Canadian friends make fried chicken or pork chops differently than we do?? C'mon, it's not like it's a recipe site from Afghanistan, for cryin' out loud!

The Canadians could do something to improve their chili, though

mechanic_joe

Ouch... you attack our chili! perhaps you've never had moose chili? or beaver tail soup? (almost chili like in texture)

I got one Canadian food word to retaliate with...

Poutine :) nuff said