leave your inhibitions at the door
The major theme for this season was a “match” of sorts between Top Chef rookies and veterans from previous seasons. In the first episode, Emily said that they’ve all lost before so it’s not like they’re unbeatable. On the surface it makes sense, but then it’s apparent that there are some advantages to having been there before.
Of the seven contestants left, Emily and Sylva are the only rookies left – and Emily should’ve been gone a long time ago. Last week, she made the worst dish on a winning team and the week before that is when Jamie gave up his immunity. I sometimes wonder if one distinct advantage of having been there before is that the judges know your capabilities and may be more lenient in the case of an egregious mistake. But I suppose that could work against them as well.
They did all the cooking in a remote kitchen for restaurant wars and that’s why this awesome kitchen guy was there.
That was his reaction to their cooking beef tongue.
Unfortunately, they had to go back to their kitchen and he wasn’t around this week. Like the great team player he is, Sheldon took on that role while listening to Shirley babbling.
This week’s Quickfire was interesting as it didn’t test their cooking abilities, but only their senses. Each were blindfolded and had to identify ingredients by smell and taste alone. Ingredients included clams, scallops, chicken, pimento cheese, and balsamic vinegar. The winner gets 14 cases of Terlato wine.
3 Fewest – Emily, Sylva, Shirley
3 Most – Brooke, Sheldon, Casey
Winner – Brooke, who identified 16.
The chefs had to provide food for a fundraiser for a children’s hospital. To tie-in the challenge to the event, their assignment was to cook something based on their happiest moments from childhood. There were 100 people at the event, each shelling out $500.
– John – butter poached king crab with garlic flavors and garlic foam
– Casey – crab macaron, orange & lemon marmalade, fennel & pea shoots
– Brooke – fresh ricotta & egg yolk crepe with trout roe & crispy prosciutto
– Shirley – Roasted leg of lamb with Beijing spice, sesame sauce and cucumber radish salad
– Emily – Icebox cake with orange bourbon sabaione cherries, hazelnuts & cocoa nib marscapone
– Sheldon – toasted barley tea & rice with steamed snapper, mushrooms, & turnips
– Sylva – Island beef “lollipop” with ground rib eye, turmeric potato & truffle jus
Favorites: Sylva, Brooke, Sheldon
Bottom: Emily, Casey, Shirley
– Remember how I said there’s two newbies left? At least Sylva has shown some competence and nerves of steel.
– This wasn’t a big surprise. Hell, it wasn’t even a slight surprise. Emily seemed ok with it, probably because she knew she should’ve been booted in the first couple of weeks of the show.
– Sheldon made a comment on how Emily was making an icebox cake for people who paid $500 a ticket. I thought the exact same thing, although it was more like “They paid $500 and you’re fucking giving them cocksucker icebox cake?!?!”
– I couldn’t decide between which I’d rather have more – Sheldon’s or Sylva’s
– I would’ve completely sucked at that Quickfire as I have a terrible sense of smell. But I’m guessing I would’ve got more than Emily’s five.
– It’s good that the Quickfire didn’t involve cooking because I didn’t want to see Emily ruin perfectly good ingredients.
– Alright, I think I’ve piled on Emily enough. Maybe she’ll do better in Last Chance Kitchen.
– In Last Chance Kitchen Emily faced Jamie, who is on a tear. To challenge her indecisiveness, they had to choose ingredients in 45 seconds, and cook in 20. Jamie forgot to get salt and oil, which should’ve doomed him. But Emily was Emily and she ended up re-thinking her first idea and made a muddled mess. Jamie moved on.