leave your inhibitions at the door
Last week’s episode had the chefs creating a full Vietnamese menu and a couple of them made Pho. It got me thinking about the greatest name for a restaurant –
Honestly, I wouldn’t care if it’s as Vietnamese as Taco Bell is Mexican. I’m sooo going there based on the name.
The episode also got me thinking making some pho myself. Then I remembered that The Sicilian did a post on it earlier this year. So not only do I get to post about a recipe from last week’s episode, I don’t have to actually do it! Hooray for laziness. And The Sicilian.
They brought back the challenge from TC Seattle where everything in the kitchen is wrapped with aluminum foil. This time, in addition to the ingredients, all the equipment was wrapped. Gail’s and Padma’s mothers were introduced and were the ones who selected all of the equipment and food for the challenge. Sure it’s a little hokey, but it’s a great challenge to show creativity and flexibility. The chefs were split into two teams with the winners getting $10K.
Team Simmons –
Sara & Stephanie – Lamb & fonduta with sharp cheddar & roasted mushrooms
Justin & Michael – red snapper papillote with rice pilaf
Carrie, Louis & Shirley – compressed buratta with pickled apples & balsamic sabayon
Team Lakshmi –
Carlos & Travis – Clams poached in fish sauce with coconut cream
Nick & Patty – Snapper & Branzino papillote with mustard vinaigrette
Bene, Brian & Nina – soup with beans, carrots, chiles, okra & cherry chutney
Winner: Team Lakshmi – they had a bigger challenge given the ingredients.
Elimination Challenge – Cater a costume party for Lea Michele
The Glee star was introduced as she was hosting a Halloween party and the chefs were going to provide the food. When asked what her preferences are, she said – she lives a vegan lifestyle, but on occasion she enjoys cheese. She also likes Italian – pasta, pizza, and anything fried. And lots of spice. And should be spooky. This is going to be a shitshow.
They were split into teams of two, with each team preparing two dishes.
Michael & Nina
Nina’s Candy corn – Ricotta gnocchetti with kale pesto
Michael’s Bloody eye: yellow arancini with saffron & tomato jam
Bene & Brian – Spooky Spa
Brian’s Crispy quinoa salad & mushroom espuma
Bene’s Heirloom tomato salad with wilted kale
Nicholas & Patty – Fall Theme
Nicholas’ Butternut squash cannoli with ricotta salata
Patty’s Lemon arancini with smoked mozzarella
Carrie & Stephanie –
Doomed shrooms: mushrooms with black garlic & radichhio
Freaky Leeky: ash coated vegetables with fontina fonduta
Shirley & Louis
Louis’ Severed thumb: braised quinoa & onions with potato puree
Shirley’s worm salad: hand cut noodles & fresh daikon radish
Travis & Carlos – Dia de los muertos
Travis’ vegetable ceviche
Carlos’ goat cheese fondue with fried zucchini
Justin & Sarah
Justin’s blood pasta: beet pasta with green tomatoes
Sara’s Evil eye – arancini with Moroccan tomato chutney
Lea joined Tom, Hugh, & Padma at the Judges table.
Favorites – Carlos/Travis, Nicholas/Patty
Winner – Carlos & Travis
Bottom – Michael/Nina, Brian/Bene
Gone – Michael, his arancini wasn’t good, the sauce was too sweet and tasted like canned sauce, and his attempts at making it look like an eyeball was amateur.
– I’m a huge fan of Glee. And you’re surprised by this?
– When I saw Lea Michele at the party, I was wondering what her costume was –
– Then I thought of Karen from Mean Girls –
– I wasn’t clear if both members of the losing team would get booted or just one. If it was a double, I’m pretty sure Brian and Bene would’ve been gone. Theirs was pretty weak.
– OK, I’m really tired of those commercials featuring last year’s winner – Kristen Kish. She is so awkward in front of the camera. But it’s nowhere near as bad as the one with the Brooke and Josh.
– Vegans… hahaha… have you seen my Facebook page’s cover?
– If I was going to be at a huge, star-studded, Top Chef catered event, I would’ve been pissed to find out it’s all vegetarian.
– They tried to go spooky, but didn’t come close to the time when Charlize Theron was on TC Texas two years ago. Not only was the creativity off the charts with the theme, it was the best food I’ve seen on in the 2+ seasons I’ve been watching. Don’t recall that one? Here’s my recap.
– Agreed with Nina that making arancini is amateur. Loved how there ended up being three of them.
– This is the second time this season that Gail appeared, but didn’t judge. Is she not doing that any more? I don’t like it when they have a non-chef as a judge in the Elimination, but Lea had some good points.
– Carlos’ accent is killer!