Thursday, September 9, 2010

"What's wrong with you?! You're coming to a competition! You know there's $125,000 at stake, right?"

Before we set it off, some duedilly:

I have 8 people who are interested in doing The Next Iron Chef as the next reality pool. Who else is down?
Hit me up email style and lemme know, Joe. FYI- Brownie saw an ep of Iron Chef where one of Cat Cora’s Sous Chef was none other than:
Brownie said if she knew that she would picked him.

And now, here’s a sweet interview with last weeks’ Guest Judge and resident cutie: Anthony Bourdain, tasty!

But let’s get to the main course, shall we? This first part of the 2 Part Top Chef DC Finale ep (I can’t believe it’s almost over, ya’ll!) began with Kelly walking around a market in Singapore looking sweaty and tired in long red and white plaid shorts, a white shirt and maroon chef shoes. She glanced at some fruit as she talked about winning. Then Ed from Boston appeared in a black…well, this is Ed so I’m guessing it’s a black undershirt…he stepped lightly as if on eggs and talked about winning. Oh wait, we’re doing this Real World style where everyone talks about how excited they are and all meet up in a central location? Gotcha.

Kelly asked how Ed’s flight was. Then Kevin showed up still in shock that he made it. He wore a safari hat as if he would not be the main course in a cannibalism contest. He said his wife was ready to burst with child. (Always a nice image to have.) Then Dusty (Angelo) appeared. He also looked sweaty but this time because everyone else did, you couldn’t tell he had recently smoked crills. But before they could ask Angelo if his Russian fiancé was still making ‘em say ‘Oh’ in Odessa, Colicchio popped up with Seetoh: The King of Singapore Street Food. Now I wasn’t aware there were Street Food Kings but Our Star was. She had read his book! (You can’t count this girl out, I tell ya.)

Colicchio introduced Seetoh and left to get a happy ending as Seetoh took the chefs on a tour of the market area that housed what looked like a hundred cooks serving dishes made on the spot. (Kinda like the Kitchen in Chinatown with, I’m guessing less roaches because they’re outdoors. So I guess that probably means more bats and rats then though, right?)

The chefs all shared a dish that a cute little Singaporean man made exactly the same way every day. As they stood and ate, Dusty told the Camera he spent a lot of time in Asia (more pipe dreams) and had a passion for the food and culture.
Seetoh showed them a stand where boiled chicken had been cooked in broth and served with rice. It looked plain but this was their main dish. “It’s our hamburger,” Seetoh said. They wandered about slightly giddy from the flavors and spices, eating chili crab that could clear your sinuses and tender cuttle fish. During this time, Our Star admitted to Camera that Kevin was her biggest competition, not Angelo, because they cook the same style of food and “when Kevin brings it, he Brings It.”
That’s totally surprising to me. Cause with the exception of like two wins I think Kevin’s only brought lethargy and maybe bedbugs.
As they walked through the next set of outdoor cafes and Kevin talked about how he promised himself he would enjoy this experience (how can you enjoy this? You’re in a competition dood, see, this is what irks me about Kevin- this is the same dood who showed up at the fridges after everyone else during a Quickfire and said: “No proteins? No more proteins?” Wake up, Kid!
They took the corner and there, in a blue strapless dress held up, again, by a titanium bra inside with a silver beaded necklace or an appliqué or breastplate (you never know) was Padma avec des monticules.
Padma: “The final street food Seetoh and I will be tasting will be yours.”

Quickfire Challenge
Create your own version of Singapore Street Food using a wok.
Pause Moment- Angelo in shock! He LITrally looks like he doesn’t know if he just stuck his willy in a backside or a an international electrical socket.

The wok would be the only cooking device and all the ingredients had to be local so Monty hoped they had been paying attention.
Seetoh said in Singapore the guy that holds a wok would make or break a restaurant and in many instances chefs there would only be able to use it after 3-5 years of experience.
Ed from Boston began to sweat.
Then Monty told them that the winner of the Quickfire would receive….
for the first time ever…
this late in the competition…
Yup, you go RIGHT to the finals.
Angelo looked at everyone: “Sorry guys.” The shriveled stones on this addict!
But there’s not a moment to take whatever Dusty’s been taking to add to the adrenaline rush because-

The chefs sprinted to ingredients that were labeled in- Cantonese!
Oh Snap! Our Star began to taste everything. Ed admitted there was some stuff he didn’t know about so he just didn’t bother.
Monty and Seetoh drank giant beers as everyone sweat, tasted and sweat some more.
Dusty gave us a wok tutorial- the flame is the most important thing and called wok-kay? Huh? I looked this up (tell me if you found something on it) and I think he’s just straight up lying now. Makes sense. I mean you combine that much air travel with Singaporean street food and methadone and who knows what will come out of your mouth. Hey, I use my laptop so much I have laptoptopia.
Also, I’m Golden God.

Utensils down, hands up!
Everyone looked as if they showered with their clothes on.
Angelo was going to do a chili crab like the one he tasted in the market but then switched to chili crab inspired chili frogs legs with pineapple and Rambutan salsa.
Our Star (Kelly) made Chinese noodles with lobster, cockles, bean sprouts and Chinese broccoli. Seetoh immediately said not a lot of Asian cooks injected those flavors into the noodles and he liked what she did.
Kevin made seafood stew with lobster & cuttlefish with crispy shallots. Monticules asked if he had ever used a wok before and he said this was his first time. HUH!!??
Monty: “What’s wrong with you?! You’re coming to a competition! You know there’s $125,000 at stake, right?”
Yeah, whip that bastard, Monty. How are you a chef that has never used a wok? Trifling!
Ed from Boston made stir fry noodles with black pepper sauce, lobster and “and little bit of that WHY LAN..?”
Seetoh corrected him: “GAI LAN. It’s Singapore style asparagus.” Ed used three different kinds of noodles. He was nervous as he told Monty that he DID use a wok before and actually liked to “wok it out” all the time. New Bravo side biz: WOK IT OUT! Asian wok fried walkabouts. KAPOW, I get 20% off that one.

Seetoh’s comments?
Dusty did well with his flavors and the bits of pineapple were a good trick.
He appreciated that Our Star captured the essence of the ocean in the broth and seared her noodles.
He recognized that Kevin was trying to touch on the cuttlefish salad dish they had eaten previously and said his dish was sophisticated and complex.
He said Ed encompassed all the flavors in his noodles that lifted up the “entire street food sensation.”
Okay, are you smoking what Dusty’s smoking, Seetoh? Cause now you’re talking shit too. That sounded stoopid.
But the one who came close to bringing “that dish home here to his heart“ was…
ED !
Dusty was Completely Shocked. Ed teared up. So did Dusty.
Ed’s in the finals! (Crack the Pink Champale LB and Jenna!)

As Dusty licked his wounds, Monty said immunity would play a huge role in the next challenge because it was a team challenge!
Say whut now?

Cater a party for Food & Wine Magazine based on the local cuisine. Hosted by our very own Linda Hunt, Editor-in-chief: Dana Cowin. (Dana was not there wearing clothes from the Gaps children’s section.)
They were to create one cohesive menu as a team and were getting $200 each to cook for EIGHTY people. Oh and they would get to buy local spices. (Who gives a fuck? How about a translator?!)
Monty: “you can now head back the Hilton Hotel”
Hmmm…where you will lay on Wamsutta sheets and use cleansers from the Dial soap family of products as you drink Kona coffee? ENOUGH with the product placement commercial sheet.
Back at the cardboard-looking hotel, they all agreed to cook just one dish. They thought there just wasn’t enough time for more. Our Star made it a point to ask everyone, a few times. The conversation between them went something like this:
We’re only making one dish, right?
Yeah, I’m only making one dish.
One dish?
Yeah. I don’t want to make more than one dish.
Okay, one dish.
(You think something might come out of this?)

At the breakfast table the next morning, Ed took a little jar of marmalade from the muffin basket and put it in his pocket: “I think I can use this for a glaze on my crust.” Angelo (semi-smile): “I wish you would take this seriously.” Ooo he jealous!
Ed to Camera: “Yes Angelo, we understand you know Asian flavors, but having immunity now, I’m ready to kick a**.”
They all wrote in their blank black notebooks about what they would cook. Everyone except Ed, that is.
Finally they went shopping. Ed walked in front of Dusty: “Come on man, other people are shopping.” Now he’s just effing with him!
Dusty thought Ed from Boston had changed completely because of immunity. He said immunity is both good and bad because you lose that fire. Angelo: “…the spark in the forest has been set and…and…those flames are gonna be burning” (much like his fiancés loins after the first time they mated and she was left with a scalding selection of STDs.)

Then…Ed began to sneak around and buy more ingredients! He suddenly decided to make a second dish for a “little extra.”
OOOoooo, Ed!
He admitted that he had a learning disability growing up and this would prove to all those people who told him he was a “effing idiot” that he was good.
Awwwww, Ed.
(I’m so easy. Say you have a learning disability or bad parents and I just turn to vegan mush.)

1 Hour to Prep for the big meal tomorrow!
In the kitchen, Dusty asked if Ed took all the pork-
Ed: “Dood does that look like pork? What the *&$#%%”
(I wasn’t sure if it was pork or lamb to be honest.)
Dusty: “Come on Ed, please? What are you in fifth grade?”
Dusty went his book where he had sketched what looked like a cross section of a giant earthworm with platelets and bits of gum flying around it. Then he seemed to simultaneously pray and speak in tongues: “Jesus, have mercy on my soul.”
Ed from Boston: “I’m getting inside his head now.”
Dusty took every opportunity to call Ed an a** (kinda the way I do with my sister, but playfully, you know and not when she might be near a pair of shoes she can throw at my head.)

Dusty prepared lamb tartare with Rambutan ceviche & curry oil;
Ed – sweet & sour pork with crispy rice and potato cakes, gai lan;
Kevin – clam chowder with flavors of southeast Asia (sounds a little vague to me) and cockles. “Wake up, wake up” he said to himself as he cooked. That’s what I’ve been saying to you all season, Dood.
Our Star made seared prawns, spicy red coconut curry (kind of a yawn, don’t you think?) and crispy prawn heads. She said her confidence level in how things were gonna taste was a ten.
Ed filleted the pork, Kevin asked if he was going to use the bones -if not, could he? Ed said no problem. They all seemed to be getting along swell until…Colicchio entered the room:
“I’m looking at the menu, you know, this is like a party for Food & Wine Magazine, you guys only have four dishes? I mean, you think that’s enough?”
Then the bomb- Ed: “I planned for two all along.”
Our Star’s face began to look blotchy like she accidentally wet herself during the flute recital and the cute boy she was in love with was sprayed with pee.
Colicchio: “I really think you guys gotta do two.”
Ed: “Absolutely, I planned for it all along. I planned for two anyway.”
He left and everyone stewed as they stewed.
No one said a word.
Ed: “That was predictable, huh?” Kevin: “Fuck you.”
They all thought Ed’s decision to make two dishes made them look bad as a group. Not only do I kinda agree but I gotta say, if someone who DIDN’T plan to make a second dish, you know, someone other than Ed, blows the judges away with their second dish made with 25 minutes left, don’t you think they SHOULD win it based on principle? Just sayin’…

Kevin worked on a second dish: congee, a rice porridge that was usually made with egg that he decided to do with tapioca. Kelly, who was sick of tasting things because she couldn’t read the cans, chose to make cold cucumber soup and tried to open a can and couldn’t. She was freaked. She had to make a second dish for 80 people with…TWENTY MINUTES LEFT!?
Ed said they all should have chosen to knock it out of the park by making two dishes.
Kevin: “Immunity’s for suckers.”
Dusty decided to make a quick soup with prawns, Kevin shared his fish sauce. No one really spoke to Ed other than to chastise him. Then Dusty noticed blood on the floor….
Our Star cut herself! This is turning into a horror film! The blood began to seep down through the plastic glove she wore.
Dusty: “Anyone got any cilantro I can use?”
Ed: “Keep looking, Son.”
Ouch, Eddie! Now you’re mean and sarcastic with a learning disability? Well keep talking to me, playboy…
Our Star could barely seal her dishes with plastic wrap. The poor one-handed paw! This is not, however, the indie film where the adopted kid from Honduras begins to speak Cantonese and helps her do what she needs to do. Strength would have to come from within. Winning starts inside. Only You know what you’re capable of! (Can you tell I’ve been working on taglines lately?)

After prep it was nighttime which, apparently, is the right time for a little outdoor café that has a sort of cement pool where you get to sit in a chair and fish for prawns. Adorable!
Kevin had to have Our Star bait his hook- what a wuss!
He was the first one to catch a giant prawn but then: “I ain’t touching that, you’re outta your mind.”
Our Star: “I gotta bait your hook and take it off?” Resourceful little minx!

The next morning they entered the venue with just 1.5 hours to cook.
Typically in congee you find a poached egg at the bottom of your bowl (ICK!) but Kevin decided to do a 63-degree farm egg (which means the yoke and white are cooked perfectly.) Half a degree more or less and it’s a different product.
Meanwhile, Ed continued to be extremely sarcastic. He said he thought people thought he was being a douche bag but half the time with Angelo...he really was. (I heart douche bags!)
The wait staff arrived in nautical sorta striped shirts. Ed wanted to give them a preview of the meal and asked them to grab a menu as the chef’s picked someone to expedite. For a moment as everyone just stared at him I thought they didn’t speak English!
Finally someone said some semblance of ‘okay’ as Ed asked for all the dishes to be brought out at the same time to each table. The wait staff looked listless. Dusty said he was glad Ed was taking charge. Guess he sorta should have since he had immunity.

Then the judges walked in like they owned the place. Linda Hunt in a lovely green dress, Seetoh in the house! Monty in a pretty ruched dark yellow silk gown with flowers and Gail- hey Gail is back everyone, in purple. I think Gail is prego.

Back in the kitchen, Kevin’s cockles wouldn’t open! Ed asked if he needed anything and helped him pop them. And then they made sweet love.
I keed. I am keeder. I just heard of cockles being popped and, you know…

The first order came in!
Kevin called it out. The cockles opened!
Ed couldn’t read the tickets (WTF we need penmanship classes now!?)
Kevin said they were all cooking al minute- nothing cooked ahead of time with a new brand new wait staff. MADNESS!
The staff stood in the doorway holding hot dishes. They wouldn’t leave! They just stood there. Dusty: “Go, go go go. Guys, just go!”

Our Star’s chilled cucumber-yogurt soup with bitter melon salad was brought out. Gail liked it and Monty pointed out her Asian components. Seetoh said the concept was good and balanced the flavors of sweet and bitter. Gail thanked Linda Hunt for coming all the way to Singapore. As if she had a better TV appearance offer in Hawaii. Not with the magazine industry drying up like it is, sheet, you know that toothpick-legged chick was gonna show!
They tasted Kevin’s chowder with the flavors of Southeast Asia, it was deemed great to look at and delicious. Dusty’s sweet and spicy shrimp broth with prawn and ginger dumplings was enjoyed.

Suddenly the wait staff brought back another ticket- one table didn’t receive their food. Our Star scolded them in a stern but caring manner as if to say- spitting in food is spitting in food but you shall not spit on this food on this day.

Dusty’s lamb tartare wasn’t Linda Hunt’s thing but “he pulled it off.” She would want to eat it. And she did. Ed’s sweet & sour pork with crispy rice & potato cakes was met with ‘yummy’ and ‘very good.’ Colicchio said it was a lot of the flavors he had in the market but refined. Linda Hunt said she would have a bottomless bowl of it. (And she needed it because her chest ribs were showing.)

In the kitchen, Kevin couldn’t read the next check, neither could Dusty. Ed didn’t know what they were doing or why they were doing it. Ed had to go out to the restaurant to ask for runners!! uØr¬vÑ (that was supposed to be Chinese for ‘Crazy!’)

Kevin’s 63-degree egg with pearl tapioca, radish condiment was a risk that paid off. Our Star’s Seared prawns with spicy red coconut curry and crispy prawn heads were eclipsed by the side salad. Seetoh loved the guava in it. Colicchio thought the dish was good. Gail said it was complex.

Ed from Boston’s banana fritters with red chili paste was ADORED. Gail and Linda Hunt both literally yelled out that they loved them. Seetoh said he would put a blog (blob) of coconut ice cream on the top in his kitchen.

Then Linda Hunt raised a glass to the chef’s (she almost needed help because she was so skinny) and as they all assembled in the restaurant, “A toast to you for making a meal that made everyone smile.”
That’s all you got, Linda? A meal that made everyone smile?
Maybe this is why the magazine industry is dying…

In the Asian Stew Room the chefs discussed what they could have done differently. No one seemed really pissed at Ed at all. Monty asked to see all of them…

Colicchio said it was the best food they had all season.
Dusty said he never made a lamb tartare and wanted to challenge himself. Seetoh loved the flavor of the prawns and the lamb, it was almost like tuna. Monty though his sauce was a little salty and Gail called it overpowering. Oh.

Colicchio thought Our Star’s fish in the curry was cut a little rough. Gail wanted her red curry to have heat. Our Star said she liked spicy food and Gail said this is not the place to be timid. Seetoh said he was going to copy her guava apple salad. SINGAPOREAN BITER!

Kevin’s clam chowder was called ‘elevated’ though Seetoh wanted a tad more heat. Colicchio thought his 63 degrees paid off. Seetoh said a little texture, toasted peanuts or sesame seeds would have brought everything out.

When it came to Ed from Boston, Gail: “Holy Asian extravaganza it was so taste-I-licious.” Hmmm, I think your commentary is better when you’re mad, Gail.
Ed: (as if he was Dean Martin with a full glass of apple juice cause he was always really sober, right?) ‘Thank you.’
Dusty gnashed his teeth.
Seetoh said he wanted Ed’s rice cake dropped in a deep fryer so it would have puffed out. “It would have been lovely.”
Ed: (listless) “Oh-K.”
Then Colicciho said if Ed took his fritter, put it in a truck and parked it in the East Village “you would have so many stoners lining up. That was the perfect stoner food and that’s a compliment.” Monty had a giant grin like she was packing Humbolt County. (What’s with all the stoner talk?)
Then Gail: “Here’s my really big problem with that dish-
Everyone froze.
“..I wanted six, I got two.”
Everyone laughed. Ed said he was eating them in the kitchen.

In the Asian Stew Room-
Our Star said she thought her tour was up. Dusty said it was he that was going home. Our Star said she was proud of what they had done. They could have been at each other’s throats but they weren’t.
See how she uplifts everyone at every turn! This is the fantasy film where the caterpillar turns into a butterfly and then a Jaguar! (The automobile.)

Back at Judge’s Table-
Monty said it was nice that Ed, who had immunity, did such a fabulous job. Gail said he infused his personality into his dishes. Ew. If that’s true I don’t wanna think about what else was on those bananas.
Our Star’s shrimp dish was good but didn’t stand out. Colicchio said if she had worked her guava salad INTO the dish it would have been better. They didn’t like Our Star’s soup, but then Gail said between hers and Dusty’s soup she would have chosen Our Star’s.
Kevin’s dish needed a little more salt. Something herbaceous…MAN what will happen?!?

The chefs were called back and Dusty teared up and so did Our Star as Seetoh announced “the clear winner.” He said they had to resort to microscopic details but one Chef sailed ahead:
Ed danced away from my arms and into the Asian Stew Room. He had beat Dusty twice in one ep. Talk about a high note.

Our Star, a shaky-lipped Dusty and Kevin stood before the Judge’s Table.
Colicchio: “It’s tough coming half way across the world and only two of you can make it…”
Then he listed the problems: Our Star- grainy fish; Kevin- needed more texture; Dusty- you gave us two dishes, one marred by salt.

And then--
Monty asked Our Star to leave!
Dusty cried as he hugged her tight. She said it was okay and shook the hand of every Judge. Through her tears, she thanked them for the feedback and said she was definitely a better chef for it. Awwwwww-
I think this is the Indie movie where Kelly comes back to the TC Reunion having learned Cantonese and just after she serves everyone Sayor Loday- a stew of prawns, glangal, curd cakes, jicama and cabbage- Alex begins to get sick!
He chokes and sputters and falls to the floor, mouth fulla foam. Kelly protests as the other contestants begin to get sick. A poison control specialist arrives with an antidote as the authorities swab the kitchen and take Kelly away! Her husband shows up! And Ben Foster too!
Then Pilly cracks under no pressure and reveals that it was Alex!
ALEX put the moves on Kelly’s food and tried to frame her and wipe out the other contestants to be the last one standing (as if Top Chef followed Miss America’s Runner Up rules.)
Pilly is arrested for being an accomplice!
Our Star is released YAY! Also she gets Fan Favorite and Eric Rippert opens a restaurant with her in Colorado!
Oh he’s dead.

Gbag, Colanto, Brownie, Jet Li and Mama? (MAMA?! Naw!) I must ask you to pack your knives and go.


LB Ed Cotton

STRIPES Kevin Sbraga

LUCY Kevin Sbraga

CC Kevin Sbraga and Angelo Sosa

HOLLY Angelo Sosa

JENNA Ed Cotton

Q Kevin Sbraga

ME Kevin Sbraga

As the three congratulated themselves Monty said she needed to see them back at judges table. Ed: “Even me?”
Monty: “Even you.”
YES Even you, Ed, your immunity is over. Jesus.
It looks like the previous Top Chef winners are coming back and Dusty is in bed sick!
Hold up, he’s getting a needle in his ass! And he’s NOT enjoying it!


  1. I want in on the next pool! Thank you for your commentary, I have thoroughly enjoyed it. You are hysterical! Thanks for your support over the past weeks, it's much appreciated.
    Your Indie Film Star, Kelly

  2. Har! That's awesome! Who is that? Colucci? Nice job.

  3. Oh Snap, Ladies and Gentlemen...
    Our Indie Film Star and Winner in our hearts: Kelly!
    THANK YOU, Chef, for being such a fierce competitor!

  4. I can't believe Kelly is reading this blog!
    "Hi Kelly!"
    So awesome for so many reasons!
    Sorry for your loss, but we really enjoyed watching you this season.
    OH - and we always want more people for the pool!

    on another note, I'm going to be in DC this Wed for work on the night of the season finale. I'm trying to see if a restaurant around there is having a Finale viewing party (you'd think they would) but I'm can't find anything for the life of me! ugh!!! Have 3 more days to look.

    love the write up, D!

  5. This is hilarious! Thanks to Daisy and Lizzy for pointing me to this blog. Can't wait for tomorrow's finale!