Thursday, April 14, 2011

Reactions to Top Chef Masters 3 Episode 2

First off this week, we play "Substitute the Chef" when John Rivera Sedlar is called away on an emergency and is replaced by the recently cut Hugh Acheson. Welcome back Hugh!

Curtis Stone gives the chefs their Quickfire Challenge - to create a meatball dish, using the meat of their choice, and a hand grinder. In 30 minutes. Judging is done by performer Kelis - she of the distracting nose ring and, apparently, milkshakes - who also happens to be a trained chef. While she seems to like most meatballs - and she is nitpicky - she really loves the Vietnamese chicken version prepared by the remaining John, John Currance, who wins $5K for his charity, Share Our Strength.

For the Elimination Challenge, the chefs are tasked with taking a classic 60s dish and transforming it into a modern appetizer for a cocktail party for 40, hosted by Mad Men's Christina Hendricks and her husband, Geoffrey Arends.

In an appropriate bit of kitsch, the chefs draw fondue forks to see who gets what dish.

George gets Chicken a la King
Sue gets Duck a l'Orange
Alex gets Bread Pudding
Floyd gets Ambrosia
Traci gets Beef Stroganoff
John gets Oysters Rockefeller
Naomi gets Grasshopper Pie
Mary Sue gets Deviled Eggs
Celina gets Coq au Vin
Suvir gets Veal Oscar
Hugh gets Beef Wellington

The chefs get 2.5 hours to prep in the Masters kitchen, and 1.5 more hours to finish their dishes in a cramped kitchen on-site. There's lots of pressure, little room to work, and most chefs help their competitors, mostly to get them out of the way so they can take over the precious little counter space and plate their own dishes. Sue and Suvir especially feel like refugees, with Suvir forced to cook his veal in the deep fryer, and Sue having no place at all to work.

The chefs present their dishes two at a time, and for the most part they get favorable comments. Except of course for Suvir, whose veal is shoe-leather tough, and Sue, who didn't get a chance to plate all of the elements of her dish. Mary Sue, on the other hand, got raves for her Japanese-style rendition of deviled eggs, and Floyd for his take on ambrosia, a dish unfamiliar to him.

In the end, Mary Sue is given the win (and $10K for her charity, Share Our Strength), and Sue is given the boot.

So what did you think about this episode? About the return of Hugh? Sue's departure? Please leave a comment.

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1 comment:

raphael said...

Unfair having Chef Sue eliminated.


I can't believe Top Chef production dropped the ball on this!

Chefs Sue, Suvir, Mary Sue and all the other chefs DESERVE RESPECT and FAIRNESS.