Wednesday, July 28, 2010

"Have you ever cooked with" duck white kidneys "before?"

Hey! It turns out I'm not the only one who loved Gerber strained plums and bought them in my teens. Q loved them too!
Anyone else? Lemme know Joe and we can get together for some mezcal and mashed jarred fruits.

In other news, Jet Li is gangster.
Jet Li’s cheddar arrived today (wtf, Stripes?) in a white envelope.
She put $20 in it. How do I know? I could see it right through the envelope. No wrapping it in a piece of paper like your Mama said (I do that, Mama! I remember you told me) because it might get stole by an underpaid postal worker. Jet said Eff That. Gangster.
Also since no postal worker stole it, recession over? Please?

When the chefs walked into the kitchen they found a table full of nasty proteins and I’m not talking about offal…
Padma avec des monticules stood with Guest Judge Michelle Bernstein. Andrea with the Bad Perm said she was not happy to see her. Really? Michelle knows Bad Perm from Miami? Wait, they both have restaurants there and apparently there’s a rivalry betwee- another rivalry born!

Andrea looked at Michelle the way those girls looked at girls whose a**es they wanted to beat high school. Yeah, that “You gotta use the bathroom sometime” look. As they smiled at each other, Bad Perm said she wasn’t that sure if you sat down at her restaurant and Michelle’s there would be that one would be that much better (really, Contestant?) and that she wasn’t that comfortable with Michelle judging her and she put the emphasis on judging like she was 7 and her Dad left the room and she could finally curse. Rowr! But before the fur could fly-

The Quickfire Challenge!
The chefs pulled knives to determine the order of picking the “exotic” protein they had 45 minutes to prepare. Tiffany said she never ate or prepared any of the ingredients as her dimples melted our hearts (she should really do the news, I’d except that we’re invading another country from her, no problem.)

Alex picked the knife marked “1” and snagged the foie gras. Kenny Q Sign grabbed the frog legs. Ed from Boston- wild boar. Tiffany- yak (take out the garbage and the trash…sorry, couldn’t resist); Stephen- Cayman crocodile. Dusthead Angelo picked duck white kidney.
Padma asked if he had ever cooked with them before. Dusty said he hadn’t and didn’t know what they were. Michelle: “They’re testicles.” Everyone clapped. I mean, Price Is Right decibel clapping with Showcase Showdown smiling. They hate him so!
Ed from Boston said he used duck balls when he was working with Todd English and they did consommé with co*k’s comb and fried duck balls so it was called Co*k and Balls Soup. Nice!
(Also, the fact that he had worked with those balls before and didn’t pick them? Kinda badass. Not as gangster as Jet Li and the plain view 20 in the white envelope but…) Dusty said the texture of the balls were like sweetbreads so he was going to make a testicle marshmallow. Que?

Kevin- wanted and picked ostrich; Indie Film Star Kelly picked Diamond Back rattlesnake; Tamesha- llama; Bad Perm – duck tongue; Amanda- was last and got the emu eggs. They looked like smooth avocados and had the consistency of pool balls. She had to use a hack saw to ‘crack’ them!

As the chefs raced about (Angelo looking like he was on his third bump of the morning) Monticules came back and with 34 minutes left in the challenge asked for everyone’s attention…
“Please take over the proteins to your left!”
Nice ones TC Producers!

Indie Film Star got Pilly’s emu eggs and decided to make an omelet realizing it had to be perfect to win; Alex had ostrich that he barded with caul fat (animal membrane- ew) and basil; Kevin ended up with Dusty’s balls (har) and cooked them meunière style (brown butter sauce) with beet and licorice puree. Pause Moment! Padma puts a ball in her mouth as Stephen stares, smiling creepily.

Tamesha had the duck tongue and went with a soup she pressure cooked with mirepoix (the French name for onions, carrots and celery. Hey, switch out the celery with some green peas and you’ll have what we used to eat in a can growing up: Veg-All.)

Bad Perm had wild boar she put it on top of risotto with dried cherries, parmesan and almonds. Michelle said the flavors were beautiful but it was a little chewy. Bad Perm grabbed her by her hair and smashed her face into the stainless steel table!
No, I keed.
Just keeping it frosty, Dear Reader. And thinking of Douglas.
Pale, angry, Mad Men–styled Douglas who refuses to read even now as he, the only Bad Perm lover, could possibly win the whole pot (let’s humor him for a moment) and yet he isn’t even bothering to read this. Even now when she’s facing the wrath of her greatest rival. Damn you Douglas McDermott. Damn you to the depths! (Not to be confused with The Lower Depths™.
Hi Jenna!)

Tiffany ended up with the foie gras and made it with a brandy-caramel sauce and caramelized apples and toasted pecans; Dusty marinated his crock in sesame oil with ginger, garlic and chili. Michelle loved the flavor. Stephen went from crocodile to frogs legs, he made one confit and one seared. Kenny Q Sign made rattlesnake French style and a rattlesnake cake. Pilly had roasted llama in a soubise sauce (white sauce with strained onion) with leek and bacon compote.

Monticules and Michelle, with probably the worst breath ever took to the front of the room. The worst? Stephen’s “insipid” frogs legs, Alex’s dry ostrich and Bad Perm’s undercooked boar. Ooooooooooo… I like Michelle Bernstein!
Bad Perm said it sucked that she was being called out by Michelle on national TV. CUT TO- Michelle handcuffed to a shower rod in a sleazy hotel in Miami. SFX: chainsaw. Male Voice: ‘Now we try the leg, huh?’

Michelle’s faves? Indie Film Star Kelly “pretty amazing,” Tamesha “cooked to perfection” and Amanda. Pilly? Huh?
The winner: Indie Film Star Kelly gets immunity!
This is the ending of the indie film where she kisses the boy and then leaves the apartment and then comes back and kisses him again - roll credits!

Elimination Challenge
A Cold War. They were to be divided into two groups (A and B) and had to make a dish best served cold. Chefs in Group A had to serve their dishes to the judges and the other group and each Group would pick a winner and someone to be eliminated.
Whoa! No, no, that’s not going to happen. There’s going to be a twist. I promise.
Meanwhile- Indie Film Star Kelly got to eat both group’s food. Wicked!

After the knife picks: Group A was-Kenny Q Sign/Ed/Kevin/Pilly/ Alex
Group B: Dusthead/Tamesha/Tiffany/Bad Perm/Stephen

Monticules told them they’d be doing their planning for the challenge on the S.S. Potomac, the maritime version of Air Force One. Monticules gave a little history lesson: apparently Kennedy did Cuban Missile Crisis meetings there. Blah blah blah just tell me Harrison Ford is gonna show up and kick some crack.

On the S.S. (really just a pretty old school kinda yacht thing, I mean, not bomb proof and I bet there’s no wi-fi) the paranoia set in. Q Sign said he thought all the chefs were out to get him. Pilly said she didn’t think anyone understood how hurtful, vulnerable and scary the challenge is. And Dusty suggested what the other chefs in his group should make. Kevin (Group A) walked by and heard him.

Starboard: Tiffany and Ed chatted alone. Tiffany: “Eddie and I get along really well…”
She told him what people were making and said she didn’t tell them what she was making. Kevin told Q Sign Dusty was giving people advice…

At Whole Foods Dusty said a cold dish means the flavor really has to pop. Stephen ran his purchases by Dusty. In the TC DC kitchen, Dusty tasted his Group’s dishes and gave advice (both solicited and not.) Now, if the Producers let the chefs choose the top and bottom contestants outright they’re just gonna vote off the front-runners so, no. This will not occur.

As they set up for the Judges (and each other) Ed said he had no beef with Group B and didn’t think he’d be personally attacked. Q Sign worried some more (Q Sign less for now) and Pilly asked Alex (Alex?) to taste her dish, he said it needed salt and pepper but didn’t tell her he could taste cartilage.

Group A went first and you realized that every Chef in Group B bought their clothes from Chess King. Also, they were colorblind.
The dishes were laid out. Pilly’s chicken galantine with plum and marsala compote, Kevin’s tuna and veal dressed Mediterranean style, Q Sign’s duo of grilled lamb one with salad and one carpaccio with a hummus in the middle; Alex’s sous vide lamb with beet puree, yogurt and pumpkin seed dust; Ed’s Sockeye salmon on pumpernickel bread with vichyssoise.

Tiffany said Q Sign’s lamb was chewy and Dusty killed Q Sign’s dish (again), saying the okra and carpaccio turned into a slime. Tamesha said Alex’s yogurt was heavy and Bad Perm said his beets needed salt and texture.
Whoa! Hold up- we have a contender for the Boob Throne! Check out the rack on Michelle Bernstein. Kapow! Hmm…I can’t figure out how she’s able to show that much cleavage without a bra- is she sewn into the bodice of that dress? Man, Monticules looks like a school marm in drab a** Talbot’s next to her.
Back to it- Tamesha said Pilly’s dish needed salt. Dusty bashed it by saying the dish wasn’t cold enough and Bad Perm got cartilage— [hey, wait a minute, the Judges aren’t saying Sh*t! Come on, they can’t let it go down like this, right?]
As Group A cleaned up Ed said he hoped Group B would set up Pilly because they had all had “enough of her.” Agree.
Kevin’s dish was pretty but lacked acidity, Bad Perm said she was all about acidity like it was a citrus job interview. Finally Colicchio, shaking his head: Did no one else get the Meyer lemon slices in Kevin’s dish? Also the tomato? The chef’s backed off a bit, agreed with him. They thought Ed’s dish had dry pumpernickel.
Most Successful: Kevin’s dish (with Tiffany concurring but giving a shout out to Ed’s dish if there were more moisture in the bread.)
Least Successful (with no input from the Real Judges): Kenny Q Sign. Hey, wow! What a surprise!
Bad Perm was the only one who mentioned Pilly’s dish as a potential bad dish because of the cartilage. Colicchio asked what was worse, a technical mistake or a conceptual mistake? Bad Perm said technical but majority rules. Kevin would be up for the win and Kenny Q Sign up for elimination.

In the extra content bump we learned that Ed from Boston knew Dusty. Like for years. And that they actually dated the same girl in college?!!?
I think that means Ed unknowingly did drugs by vah jay jay osmosis.

Back to the back stabbin! Group B prepared and plated as Group A, dressed much better, sat.
Tiffany presented fennel and peppercorn crusted ahi tuna with a gazpacho sauce and cucumber salad underneath; Dusty a slow poached sockeye salmon (that he admitted he over seasoned as he made it) with chili cilantro and pineapple tea; Bad Perm did a trio of tartare (steak, tuna and veggie); Stephen did a dish that looked like a car accident- chilled sliced beef with jalapeno oil on crispy rice; Tamesha- wanted to give them a taste they hadn’t had before, a sweetness with a peppery note: lightly chilled scallops with a rhubarb jus and rhubarb pickle and basil.

(Hey, I thought maybe Tamesha had a cold before cause she sounded stuffed up on an ep but now I think she just has a deviated septum.)

Pilly and Alex liked Tiffany’s dish. They said Bad Perm’s beef tartare needed more seasoning; Q Sign said Stephen’s sliced beef didn’t blow his socks off. Ed from Boston: ‘Where’s the beef?’ Pilly thought Tamesha’s scallops were too spicy and Colicchio said it was a very strange taste (they Cut To Dusty in the other room massaging Tamesha’s shoulder.)
Q Sign said he couldn’t taste Dusty’s salmon. Pilly said there was a lot of Asian stuff and it was all running together for her.
Ed, Pilly, Alex and Q Sign picked Tiffany’s dish as the favorite. And up for elimination- everyone picked Tamesha. OVERALL- Group A was a lot meaner and a lot more strategic in their selections… [but the Judges are gonna over rule this cause they can’t just let them pick.]

In the Stew Room, Bad Perm told Pilly she got a big piece of cartilage in her dish. She was mortified. As if announcing the weather, Dusty told Kenny Q Sign they all agreed he had the worst dish. A rivalry born!

Then Monticules asked to see Tiffany and Kevin- [WOW they’re really letting this sh*t follow through?] Colicchio said their peers picked them but they agreed.
Michelle announced the winner: Kevin.
He was given a 6-night trip to the Hilton Hawaiian Village. Hawaiian Village? Where’s that? They didn’t say an island, it could be in Cleveland.

Kevin went back to the Stew Room told the group the Judges wanted to see Tamesha and Kenny Q Sign. [Wow, this is really happening.]

Monticules asked how Tamesha was feeling about being there. She said she was surprised. Gail told her the jus was too spicy. Michelle said with the texture of the scallop in the jus it was like putting another tongue on your tongue.
Ewwwww- that totally made me think of the first time I saw sea urchin sushi cause that sh*t looks like a tongue, yo.
Tamesha said she stood behind her dish 100%. Colicchio said between the jalapeño, ginger, orange, long pepper, rhubarb, sugar and vinegar the scallop was lost. Um, that does sound like a lot.

Gail told Kenny Q Sign there was too much going on (there were 17-25 ingredients!) and it diluted the pure flavors of his dish. When Monticules asked why Kenny thought his peers voted him there he said he was a threat and consistently in the top.
Michelle replied that, as a person just arriving, she really didn’t enjoy the flavors. She said if she could talk about each piece on the dish it would take her through the end of the show!

Wow is Kenny Q Sign going home?!
Will eleven of you lose a pick (and Colucci be eliminated from the pool completely?)

In the end…

it was…

Tamesha who was asked to pack her knives and go.
Teary Tamesha: “This is some bullsh*t. F**k.”
As Tamesha cried and hugged Dusty the longest, Tiffany said Dusty knew the dish and tasted everything and knew the flavors and that you have to watch people. But come on, Tiff, you gotta know that Dusty wanted Q Sign outta there. Though Kenny had been in the bottom more than Tamesha, he had also been in the top more than her.

We’re all still in this sh*t. And next week, Tiffany might be in the sh*t too. Turns out she has a fiancé…


COLUCCI Kenny Gilbert

LB Ed Cotton

STRIPES Kevin Sbraga and Alex Reznik

GBAG Kenny Gilbert and Kelly Liken

LUCY Kevin Sbraga and Kelly Liken

COLANTO Kenny Gilbert and Kelly Liken

KAT BAKER Kenny Gilbert and Tiffany Derry

DAISY Kenny Gilbert and Alex Reznik

CC Kevin Sbraga and Angelo Sosa

HOLLY Kenny Gilbert and Angelo Sosa

BROWNIE Kelly Liken and Alex Reznik

JENNA Kenny Gilbert and Ed Cotton

MATT Kenny Gilbert and Alex Reznik

Q Kenny Gilbert and Kevin Sbraga

RUBY Kenny Gilbert and Stephen Hopcraft

JET LI Kenny Gilbert and Kelly Liken

DOUGLAS Kenny Gilbert and Andrea Curto-Randazzo

MY MAMA Kelly Liken

ME Kevin Sbraga and Kelly Liken

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