Bad home-cooked food got YouTube cooks Mike and Josh Greenfield into the kitchen

Josh (far left) and Mike Greenfield got their new TV show after their tutorial videos of easy-to-cook meals on YouTube caught the attention of a production house.
Josh (far left) and Mike Greenfield got their new TV show after their tutorial videos of easy-to-cook meals on YouTube caught the attention of a production house.PHOTO: MTV

Mike and Josh Greenfield have cooked for stars on their show and served Enrique Iglesias a rabbit meat sandwich

Although New York-based brothers Mike and Josh Greenfield have never run a food business before, their years of whipping up meals at home have now gotten them on a new MTV show, Brothers Green: Eats!, which premieres here tomorrow.

"We started making our own food as our mum wasn't a great cook. She would use frozen, boxed and canned foods that didn't have a lot of love in them," said Josh, who declined to reveal his age.

His first dish was an omelette, while Mike, 27, made a bacon, egg and cheese sandwich when he was 13.

The duo got their own show after their two-year-old YouTube channel, also titled Brothers Green Eats and which has more than 110,000 subscribers, was seen by New York-based production house Storyville Entertainment, which then contacted the brothers and went on to produce the show for MTV.

On their YouTube channel, the brothers post tutorial videos of easy-to-cook meals, like how to make a meal by adding eggs and vegetables to leftover fried rice.

Now on the 12-episode show, set in the brothers' home in Brooklyn, they demonstrate how to make dishes with easy-to-find ingredients. One example is Jelly Stuffed Everything Bagel Donut, a cross between a bagel and a doughnut.

It features biscuit dough, with a texture somewhere between chewy bagels and soft doughnuts, which is shaped into a circle, filled with jelly and fried. They are then glazed and topped with scrambled eggs, sausage and a drizzle of maple ketchup, which is maple syrup mixed with ketchup.

On the show, the brothers also make other items such as a microwaved banana cake and a burger inspired by char siew bao (barbecued pork buns).

In addition, they got a chance to cook for Spanish singer and record producer Enrique Iglesias, as well as English singer-songwriters Ed Sheeran and Charli XCX on the show. They met the stars through MTV sending them to events such as Isle Of MTV, an annual free outdoor music event in Malta.

They made a sandwich with rabbit meat for Iglesias there.

"Wild rabbit is a delicacy at Malta and we also wanted to cook Enrique something which he's never tried before. We bought a whole rabbit from a butcher and slow-cooked it till it fell apart," Mike said.

Josh added: "Enrique was initially hesitant, but really enjoyed the sandwich. He didn't go out for dinner like he was initially planning to."

The brothers do not worry about whether people consider them real chefs. Josh has a degree in marketing and Mike in architecture, and they have never had formal culinary training.

Nevertheless, they were praised by American chef and television personality Aaron Sanchez while competing in the American reality TV cooking show, Chopped, two years ago.

"He really seemed to love this taco dish we made - he finished the whole thing," Mike said.

A chef friend used to comment that they were not cutting and sauteing their vegetables right, but got accustomed to their way of cooking after making Jamaican meat patties - a flaky pastry stuffed with various meats and spices - with the brothers.

If they ever have a cooking business, they would prefer operating a food cart to a restaurant.

"When we had friends over to try our dishes, we'd pass around little finger foods, instead of having formal sit-down dinner parties. Our food's definitely more street-style and that's what we love," Josh said.

Their mother is pleased with their culinary skills.

Mike says: "She loves it because we've started cooking for our family gatherings - and she doesn't have to do so as much."

sarahgyx@sph.com.sg

Brothers Green: Eats! shows on MTV Asia (Singtel TV Channel 350 or StarHub TV Channel 533) on Thursday at 7.30pm. Recipes from each 30-minute episode are available at www.brothersgreen.mtv.tv.