Top Chef 1/14 Episode

I love Top Chef and, though life has been extra crazy, I am going to get back to timely recaps. But until then, here is the one for this last episode!

Quickfire Challenge:

Hung Huynh (season 3 winner) is the guest judge for the quickfire. Padma uncovers a pile of canned foods. They are supposed to create a dish without fresh food in only 15 minutes. They were terrified! They are all so snotty about using any kind of canned ingredient. Radhika says that she wouldn’t ever use a canned, aged ingredient, “it is something a housewife uses”. Step off babe (yes, hit a nerve). Apparently, Stefan isn’t smart enough of figure out how to open a can of Spam;). The bottom was Leah, Radhika, and Jamie. The top was Hosea, Stefan, and Jeff. The winner was Stefan (I bet Hosea regrets letting him have some Spam).

Elimination Challenge:
First we have the knife draw with different proteins on it and that makes groups of 3. They have to create a family style lunch, including dessert, for 16 people. That lunch is to be centered around their main protein.

They all go back to plan. Stefan and Jamie just kept fighting. Stefan basically refuses to let Carla and Jamie make the menu choices even though he has immunity.

Well, everyone gets in the cars to go shopping and then people start realizing that they aren’t going to Whole Foods. They are met by Chef Dan Barber at the Stone Barn Center. Basically they are farming at this agricultural center so no one really knows what is going to be available. They are cooking for the farmers, their family and people who work there. So the chefs all see the animals and spend a little time with the proteins they will be cooking.

Basically the chefs have butchered meat but it appears they have to break a lot of it down. Also there is a lot of produce laid out for them. Fabio said it took Radhika 1 hour to peel and grill 10 ears of corn. That seems to be a little slow. The lamb team took the lamb meat off the leg bone and that doesn’t make sense because they are supposed to be making a nice home style meal. It seems to be an even bigger mistake because Arianne seems unable to tie off her roasts.

Arianne, Hosea, Leah (Lamb): Roasted Duo of Lamb, Heirloom Tomato Salad, Rosemary and Garlic Roasted Potatoes, Swiss Chard, Summer Berry Trifle

Jamie, Stefan, Carla (Chicken): Chicken Cutlet, Lemon-Herb Roasted Chicken, Chicken Ravioli Soup, Nectarine and Strawberry Tartlet

Fabio, Jeff, Radhika (Pork): Seared Pork Loin, Sausage Ravioli with Pesto, Fried Green Tomatoes, Grilled Corn Salad with Bacon, Creme Brulee

Service and Judging:

The soup in the summer wasn’t making sense to people even though the soup was good. The lamb was badly butchered and over seasoned. One person thought it was over cooked. They thought the pesto overwhelmed the pork sausage. Tom didn’t like that the pork team took the pork loin off the bone. Tom loved that Carla used thyme in the tart. Other people loved that Carla tied the lemon in. The judges thought the creme brulee was to sweet. Dan Barber didn’t like the trifle at all.

Jamie, Carla and Stefan got called in first to judges table. They were the favorite! Carla’s dessert was their favorite. All 3 were the winners this week. There seem to be no prize associated with it though. Then the judges wanted to see everyone else. Jeff got slammed for removing the fat. Fabio got slammed for too much pesto on the dish and that overwhelmed the delicate pork. Radhika just did the salad and helped with the dessert and Tom lit into her for that. Arianne broke down the lamb and Padma asked why just Arianne did the lamb. Tom said that the butchering was done poorly and the tying was horrible. Leah didn’t think the roasts were rolled badly. Hosea said that he has broken down lamb and Tom said that he should have spoken up then.

The judges agreed that on the whole the lamb was way worse than the pork. But Tom was bugged that Radhika stood back and didn’t do much. While Hosea should have stood up and butchered but Arianne should have been doing better. Also, Leah didn’t do much and was willing to stand back and watch Arianne fall for the lamb.

In the end it was curtains for Arianne.

I am so excited for the next episode because it is the always fun restaurant wars!

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