The Food and Wine Hedonist

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Top Chef NOLA Episode 3: Commander’s Palace

Episode 2

Episode 4


Here we are in the third week of the new season and I’ve actually shocked myself by following through on a loony idea.  In my recap of the season premiere, I tossed out the idea of cooking something inspired from the previous week and posting the recipe.  And, lo and behold, I did it.  In case you missed it this past Sunday, I posted a recipe for Gumbo z’Herbes.

GzH Bowl


Now that I did that, I think have complete carte blanche to ignore that idea for another month or so..


Quickfire Challenge

Dana Cowen, editor-in-chief of Food and Wine, came in as guest judge for the competition.  She had identified four food trends that she thinks has got to end – bacon, eggs on top, kale, and smoked.  The chefs had to create a dish that reinvents the food trend.  The winner gets immunity for the elimination challenge and the loser gets tossed from the show.

Nicholas – Quail egg, scallop, truffle juice & duck egg vinaigrette

Nina – scotch Quail egg on confit potatoes with leek & potato puree

Carrie – Soft boiled eggs with chili flakes & lemon zest on green beans – looks like cat puke

Shirley – Rice congee with shirred egg, soy sauce, & sesame oil

Sara – Tuna Tataki with arbol chile vinaigrette

Michael – cold-smoked oysters with strawberry mignonette

Janine – Roasted pork loin with chipotle smoked caramelized apples

Louis – Smoke trout with lime & olive oil vinaigrette

Bene – Seared tuna in bacon with honey, vinegar, jalapenos & corn

Brian – Bacon with scallop, ginger, honey & sugar snap peas

Travis – Bacon Pho broth with seared scallop & sweet carrot puree

Carlos – Bacon & halibut with apples, tomatoes, avocados, & bacon vinaigrette

Stephanie – Pasta with lightly candied bacon & flash fried sweet potatoes

Patty – Kale with toasted garlic, chili flakes, & shaved parmesan

Justin – Kale steamed with lemon, anchovy syrup & parmesan

Aaron – fried kale dredged in soy, mirin, rice vinegar, & yuzu sauce

Bret – Kale juice & gazpacho with kale salad

Favorites – Nina, Shirley, Stephanie

Winner – Shirley

Least – Bret, Aaron, Louis

Gone – Aaron – he blew it and he knew it.


Elimination Challenge

The chefs were treated to dinner at Commander’s Palace – one of the most influential restaurants in the country.  There have been some terrific chefs to come out of there – Paul Prudhomme, Emeril, and Chicago’s Jimmy Banos.  Right before dinner, the chefs were informed that the challenge was to recreate one of the dishes they were eating.  Judging would be based on how close they came to the original in taste and in presentation.  At the judges table were Tom, Hugh, and Emeril.

The dishes were:

Shrimp & tasso Henican – Bene, Michael, Travis, Nina

Black skillet seared trout with crawfish – Janine, Nicholas, Louis, Carlos

Veal chop tchoupitoulas – Brian, Patty, Shirley, Bret

Strawberry Trio – Justin, Stephanie, Sara, Carrie

Favorites – Stephanie, Justin, Nina

Winner – Justin

Bottom – Bret, Louis, Carlos

Gone – Bret


Random Thoughts

– It would’ve been COMPLETELY awesome if they would’ve told them what the challenge is AFTER they ate. There would’ve been some major trainwrecks of dishes.

– I’m a little pissed at how Dana Cowen announced that the bacon trend should be done.  It’s not that I disagree, it’s actually because I couldn’t agree more.  I’ve been developing a post on how bacon has jumped the shark, but the Quickfire just took some of the wind out of my sails.  Of course, if I ever got my act together and finished the post, I could’ve avoided this stress.

– Pissed at Dana part two – I was all set to do a whole bunch of experimentation with eggs, but apparently  that’s passé.  And I’m such a ho to trends.

– Pissed at Dana part three – What’s she know about what’s cool? Take a look at how she paired those earrings wtih that nasty blue top.  Ugh, and that hair.


– So Shirley said that she’s doesn’t cook Asian food, so it’s good to know that Congee isn’t actually Chinese.

– So far the most annoying people are Brett and Michael.  And Brett Michaels


– Stephanie is really close to making that list.  She’s just is completely wooden and kind of has a bitchy resting face.



About thefoodandwinehedonist

I don't know everything about the world of food and wine, but I'm not going to let a small detail like that stop me from blogging about it.

One comment on “Top Chef NOLA Episode 3: Commander’s Palace

  1. Pingback: Top Chef NOLA Episode 4: Captain Vietnam | The Food and Wine Hedonist

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This entry was posted on October 17, 2013 by in Television and tagged , , , , , , , .
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