Posted by: Lauren on Jan 12, 2011
Spike’s knifing last week is not the subject of very much debate, but people do talk about how Angelo can’t help but get his hands into other people’s food.
The chefs will face off against Tom Colicchio in a speed challenge to cook an entire dish. Tom cooks very quickly and throws something at Padma during his prep. Not classy, Tom! He cooks black bass with clams, tomato and zucchini, in 8 minutes, 37 seconds. The winner of the challenge gets immunity AND a Toyota Prius. Not too shabby!
Antonia: Seared ahi tuna with fresh tomato salad
Jaime: Clam amuse-bouche with bacon tomato and cream. Jamie didn’t finish hers in time either and Padma and Tom have to share the one clam.
Tre: Grilled beef tenderloin, seared foie gras with mushrooms and brandy sauce
Dale T.: He calls his an attempt to make pad thai with egg noodles, but he didn’t finish in the short time period.
Tiffany: Pan-seared bass with romato relish, olives and capers
Richard: Foie gras roasted with aromatics, corn, fresh coriander and port
Marcel: Black sea bass with dashi broth, bok choy, chili oil
Fabio: Clams, fish, zucchini, tomato broth, thyme (this is basically Tom’s dish)
Angelo: Yuzu branzino crudo with jalapeno and cilantro – he gets called out by Fabio for doing a raw dish that Colicchio warned them against.
Tiffani: New England clam chowder with celery and cream
Casey: Spice-rubbed filet and fresh tomato relish
Mike: Pan-roasted branzino with black olive and caper stew
Hootie (Carla): Shrimp with mango, cilantro and mint
Bottom 3: Dale, Jamie and Angelo end up in the bottom for not finishing and for doing a raw dish after Tom told them not to.
Top 3: Mike, Richard and Marcel end up in the top three and Mike wins the car. He is annoying me less than he did at the beginning of the season, so I am happy for him.
Elimination Challenge: Take over a dim sum restaurant’s lunch rush in Chinatown.
The chefs will work as one team to produce dim sum dishes for a popular restaurant in Chinatown. This one looks hard and the previews tell us that it isn’t going to go well, so that is fun.
Two people have to work the floor and Carla and Casey volunteer to do so. Dale and Angelo have experience in Dim Sum restaurants and should do well in the challenge. Fabio has a pet turtle that he walks on a Chihuahua leash. I can’t make this up. Casey is making chicken feet, which is a bold move considering it is something that Chinese kitchens make a lot of.
The chefs head to the kitchen they will be working in and it is a different kind of set up, with steamers and wok stations and other things. Jen takes some time to de-nail her chicken feet and I feel a bit ill.
The guest judge is Susur Lee. Once the service starts, the judges evaluate each dish and we see lots of shots of people wondering where all the food is. We also see lots of shots of restaurant patrons staring at empty plates and wishing they could eat. When they finally do start eating, the diners are not very happy. One of the people comments that the food is “Caucasian dim sum”. Slam!
Descriptions of each dish follow below:
Antonia and Jaime: They do one dish together which is long beans with Chinese sausage. The bicker about whether they are underseasoned (Antonia’s stance). The Judges call them overcooked and too sauced.
Antonia: Shrimp toast with pickled scallions and mushrooms. The judges like this dish.
Jaime: Scallop dumplings with water chestnuts and Chinese chives. The dumpling has too much wrapper and not enough filling.
Tre: Orange ginger dessert with fresh water chestnuts, toasted pine nuts and thai basil. The judges think the dessert needs to be much colder and more set.
Dale T.: Cheung fun with XO shrimp. I don’t know what this means. He also makes sweet sticky rice with Chinese bacon.
Tiffany: Spicy pork with vegetables on a steamed bun- the judges like that this dish has an authentic Chinese flavor to it.
Richard: They don’t tell us what Richard’s dish is, but it looks like a roll of some sort. The judges criticize it for having an alcohol flavor.
Marcel: Boneless chicken wing with scallion mayonnaise – the judges think it is very bland.
Fabio: Soy honey glazed spicy pork rib- Fabio manages to get this one out even with some challenges with the ovens being different and not having a grill. The judges like it.
Angelo: Shrimp and pork spring roll- this dish gets high praise from the judges.
Tiffani: Cabbage, cilantro and sesame salad with crispy curry chicken – the guest judge likes the flavor, but Gail thinks hers is over-sesameeed.
Casey: Casey’s chicken feet dish was supposed to be made by Antonia because Casey was a runner upstairs, and she doesn’t really seem to send it at all. Her dish is Chinese chicken feet and scallion pancake. The judges do not like it and neither do the patrons.
Mike: Mike does pork and prawn steamed dumplings with spicy soy sauce. The sauce is too salty and strong, but it doesn’t matter because he has immunity.
Hootie (Carla): Vegetable summer roll with lemongrass dipping sauce – the roll is well-made but doesn’t taste very good.
I don’t know who will go home for this disaster, but I suspect that Antonia, Jamie and maybe Casey will be in the bottom three.
Bottom 5: Casey, Antonia, Carla, Jamie and Tre
These 5 are called out for not getting enough of their food out and for having the least favorite dishes. Jamie knows her dumplings weren’t good. Antonia made one good dish, but also made the bad long beans with Jamie and didn’t do a good job of handling Casey’s dish. Tre knew that his dish didn’t work in the hot kitchen. Carla’s dish was just too dainty and not very tasty.
Top 4: Tiffany, Angelo, Dale and Fabio
Compliments all around for the top 4. The winner of the challenge is Dale.
The chef going home is……..
Ouch. That seems like a shaft. She didn’t even get to cook her dish.
- Noise of the Week: It wasn’t a true noise this week because the offending dish wasn’t a gross combination of flavors. Instead, this is the moment in the show when I felt nauseous. Casey’s chicken feet toenails.
- Padma usually wears beautiful clothes, but at the quickfire challenge this week, she wore an unfortunate black and white stripe long sleeve t-shirt thing with puffed sleeves. Not so nice.
- I think there is a problem with this kind of challenge because it is not just about the food, but how a team manages a restaurant. Those who put effort into making the restaurant side of things work would not have been rewarded with anything, and their food suffered because they weren’t tending to it. If the group had been split in to two teams and the restaurant that did the best won the challenge, then at least there is an incentive to do well in serving the customers.
- It really seems like a raw deal for Casey going home this week, but her dish was called “inedible” by Colicchio and she had been in the bottom before, so I guess it is for the best.
- There is a hatred brewing for Jamie for her non-cooking and generally unimaginative food (by her fellow cheftestants). I wonder if the judges will see that anytime soon.
- My recap is only 1 day late today...I call that progress!