With nine chefs remaining, we’re not exactly yet in the phase where we weep for those who get booted off, but we already know enough about these chefs that we know who we’re rooting for.
The Quickfire challenge paired beer and curry: In half an hour, they needed to prepare a curry, one which would pair well with a specific Goose Island beer. With only a half-hour to create a dish that’s complex by definition, they were understandably a little stressed. But they all picked out a beer (the same one, incidentally), decided on a curry to make, and got to work.
Los Angeles’ KCRW’s music director Jason Bentley was brought in to judge, because music is like curry, or something. Here’s what seven of them ended up with (for some reason, we haven’t been seeing all the chefs’ Quickfires):
Franklin: Malaysian curried mussels with okra and scallions, paired with Sofie beer
Jennifer: Harissa mussels with eggplant, chickpeas, chile papadum chops, and Matilda beer broth
Douglas: Coconut water consommé, petrale sole and mango, paired with Sofie beer
Lynn: Vegetable curry with green apples and cashews, paired with Sofie beer
Sang: Northern Thai yellow curry with Kaffir lime and chicken thighs, paired with Sofie beer
Neal: Grilled chicken leg, basmati rice and coconut curry sauce, paired with Sofie beer
Bryan: Wood oven-roasted shrimp, peanut, coconut, and orange cells, paired with Sofie beer
Douglas’ consommé "didn’t feel curry enough," according to Bentley, and Franklin’s mussels were too complicated. Lynn’s vegetable curry paired nicely with the beer and blew him away, though, and Sang’s was hearty, spicy, and "a real curry." Sang won the challenge, and won $5,000 for his charity, Worldwide Orphans. He’s far and away been the strongest challenger yet.
For the Elimination Challenge, James Oseland showed up to tell them that his magazine, Saveur, would be throwing a "global tasting," and that they’d need to provide the food. Douglas’ sous chef won the earlier competition, so he got immunity. Lynne, Bryan, and Sang’s sous chefs were on the bottom, so they automatically got put in a group together. Douglas got to choose his partners, David and Sue, and the remaining three chefs, Franklin, Neal, and Jennifer, were teamed together.
Off to Whole Foods they went, where everyone except the losing team had a half-hour to shop (Lynne, Bryan, and Sang got only 15 minutes). After Curtis left, Oseland told them that he wasn’t in fact feting Saveur, he was throwing a surprise engagement party for Curtis. Good times! To help them plan their menus, Curtis’ fiancée Lindsay Price came in, and she told them that he loves chocolate and spicy curry crab. They went shopping, some with more time than others, then headed into the kitchens to get some cooking done.
In the meantime, a bunch of (presumably) Curtis and Lindsay’s family and friends crept into the main room, drank some champagne, and waited for Curtis to walk in. We got to see what the set looks like backstage (it looks like the backstage of a set), Curtis walked in, smiled broadly, showed his human side, and tried some of the chefs’ food.
Here were the dishes, broken down by team:
Sang: Deconstructed Korean BBQ with ssamjang vinaigrette, scallions, and black sesame
The judges thought it was a great take on tartare, and deemed it delicious.
Lynn: Curried crabcakes with mango-ginger relish
Curtis thought that the crab tasted great, and Lindsay agreed.
Bryan: Bay scallops, grapefruit, and maple vinegar
The yogurt fought with citrus, but the scallop was just about perfect.
Team: Yellow corn cake with bourbon ice cream and caramel
While the cake tasted a little bland, overall it wasn’t a bad dessert.
Neal: Lamb kafta with peanut coconut curry
This largely came across as too fatty and difficult to eat.
Jennifer: Lobster, lentil, and coconut ravioli with macadamia and red curry
They didn’t get much in the way of lobster, but it reminded Lindsay of what they ate on their second date, so there was that.
Franklin: Salmon with citrus, avocado and cucumber and pink sake guava coconut cocktail
The cocktail was no good.
Team: Ricotta chocolate donuts
The texture was good but it had no taste, and the chocolate was more like a "skid mark."
Team: Korean surf and turf with steak and lobster
While the lobster and meat together was a little weird, it still tasted pretty good.
Sue: Curried crab beignet with cilantro aioli
It was a big bite, but was crunchy and tasty.
Douglas: Shiitake umami broth
The flavor was great, and the glass’ rim impressed Curtis.
David: Chocolate cheesecake pops with peppermint whipped cream
These were addictive, and just about everyone seemed to love them.
Sue, Doug, and David were called in to see the critics first, and they were told that their team had the top dishes. The umami broth was "deceptively complex" and full of flavor, Sue’s beignet was crunchy on the outside and soft and creamy on the inside, and David’s dessert made everyone happy. Each member of the team won $5,000 for their charities.
Franklin, Neal, and Jennifer were called in to meet with the judges next. Obviously on the bottom, none of their dishes really worked. Neal’s kafta was too fatty and not very interesting, and Jennifer’s pasta dough was too thick and there didn’t appear to be any lobster. Franklin, who decided to take on two dishes (not a wise move), made an absolutely atrocious coconut guava drink, and the donuts were bland and needed more chocolate, even though his salmon was okay.
In the end, Franklin got the ax because he bit off more than he could chew, and served food that simply wasn’t very good. Another arguable elimination; they seemed to be leaning toward Neal because he made one simple dish that didn’t impress anyone. It’s clear that on Top Chef ambition is rewarded, but getting in over your head is punished.
Recap: 'Top Chef: Masters,' Season 5, Episode 4 - Recipes
Apparently, an artist's t-shirts emblazoned with "eat more kale" "is likely to cause confusion of the public and dilutes the distinctiveness of Chick-fil-A's intellectual property and diminishes its value."
Eat more kale. Eat mor chikin. Yup. Exact same sentence. Exact same sentiment. Come on, man!
Remember Phoebe Cates? She puts half-and-half in her espresso. Huh. But she cooks! (I find the whole Grub Street Diet column fascinating.)
More celebrities: GQ hates Gwyneth Paltrow, her cookbook, and her pizza oven. Personally, I kinda like Goop. I don't think she's purposely pretentious - it just comes naturally.
Anyone out there watching The Next Iron Chef on Food Network? I had several requests to recap it, but I'm already doing Top Chef. After doing Rocco's Dinner Party AND Next Food Network Star simultaneously, I was ready for the boobie hatch. Anyhoo. Chef Eddie Huang is recapping NIC for Eater. he's pretty entertaining. And possibly on crack.
I've mentioned before that the chats on Serious Eats can be pretty entertaining. And educational. In a recent discussion on shoplifting, I learned that Preparation H suppositories are popular items to steal. Apparently coke addicts stuff them up their noses to relieve irritation.
Posted by theminx on Minxeats.com.
Wannabe TV Chef
There was a repeat last night of the 7 minute commercial break almost at the end. This time the 15 second interlude was Hosea and Leah flirting. Otherwise, it was a quite interesting episode with plenty of challenge for the chefs.
The Guest Judge was Rocco DiSpirito, most recently a Dancing with the Stars competitor but usually a celebrity chef. The Quickfire Challenge was deceptively simple: create an amuse-bouche (which I think Leah defined as a one bite starter). Chefs were told that Rocco loves bacon, so they were supposed to infer that the dish should be savory because that is what he thinks is correct for breakfast. One chef did not agree and many did not follow the “one bite” philosophy.
Fabio – he created a sweet breakfast dish, a brioche with brulee banana and expresso cream
Jamie – Bacon Lettuce tomato breakfast sandwich
Daniel – cornflake crusted zucchini flower stuffed with hash
Stefan – Huevos Rancheros w/ salsa and cheese
Ariane – French Toast w/chli maple syrup
Melissa – French toast, eggs, strawberries, bacon
Jeff – twice baked potatoes, yoghurt sorbet with fruit
Leah – bacon, quail eggs, cheese w/ grilled bread
Radhika – feta cake w/ omelet, bacon, Hollandaise sauce
Those chefs not having their dishes shown in this QF as best I could see were Hosea, Eugene, Alex and Carla.
The judging by Rocco was very direct. He hated Fabio’s sweet breakfast and Fabio commented that he should have listened to the hint. Daniel’s use of corn flakes did not resonate with either me or Rocco. Who in the gourmet world wants to eat cornflakes if something better is available?
The race for the best was between Stefan. Leah and Jamie. Stefan was lauded for his fancy container (hollowed egg shell cut precisely) but I say who cares since it does not impact the food and Tom Colicchio is adamant on the quality of the food being the only criteria for judging.. Leah was lauded for great arrangement of flavors in one bite and Jamie for beautifully assembled and perfectly prepared dish. The nod went to Leah, who won immunity for the Elimination Challenge plus Rocco’s book “Rocco Gets Real”. I should note that Jeff, whose tasty dish had two separate components, clearly failed the one bite criteria. I should also note that the Keep It Simple Stupid philosophy appeared to be key to success (and for the Elimination Challenge below as well)
The Elimination Challenge was to do a 2.5 minute live demonstration of a dish for television. Chefs had limited time to buy produce and only one hour to prepare for this. Fabio talked the fish retailer in Whole Foods to allow him to cut tuna himself. Hosea and Eugene then did the same. We will surely have 3 tuna-based dishes. Here is the menu:
Fabio – tuna w/ roasted carrots and asparagus salad
Jamie – bittersweet salad w/ duck egg, bacon and caviar
Alex – rose infused crème brulee
Daniel – ginger sweet soy skirt steak w/ cabbage salad
Stefan – minestrone soup w/ pancetta and herbs
Ariane – New Jersey beefsteak tomato salad w/watermelon and feta cheese
Jeff- Malfouf roll w/ shrimp and muhammara sauce
Leah – seared duck breast w/corn and blueberry hash
Eugene – tuna sashimi and pea shoot salad
Radhika – sweet shrimp and cucumber salad
Hosea – crispy ahi tuna roll wasabi peas
Carla – tortilla soup
Melissa – blackened habanero shrimp
Comments by the judges were:
Leah – she ran over, so “it’s a good thing you have immunity”
Alex – he too ran over but worse his brulee never set properly in the one hour prep time
Daniel – he smoked up the studio plus his hamming it up was over the top
Stefan – showed insufficient personality
Jeff- pulled it off
Ariane – perfect presentation
Winners were Jeff, Fabio and Ariane. the overall winner for the second time in a row was Ariane, whose comment on this was “move over you young kids, here comes the old lady”. Her point is that she has broad experience which is difficult for younger people to have. I like her a lot, not just because she’s from New Jersey (without the Joe Piscopo accent). She has redeemed her poor showings in the first 2 episodes.
The bottom were Melissa, Jamie, Leah, and Alex. Leah was immune and not subject to elimination.
Now an extraordinary (but clearly highly planned) surprise happened. Tom snuck into the sleeping quarters and awakened the 3 top competitors. He told them that their dishes would be judged by the 4 TODAY show hosts and taped at 6:37am for showing on “the day after the episode shows”. That would make it this morning for the showing. So that occurred without incident except for Cathy Lee Gifford spitting out Jeff’s shrimp on-camera. The judges went with simple and flavorful and picked Ariane’s dish as the winner. She will also get a 5 minute live spot on the TODAY” show sometime and she won a set of chef’s tools from Rocoo..
The 3 remaining losers were now judged. Melissa had been defensive during her presentation when criticized. Jamie left the lack of doneness of her egg whites to impact her and was angry on camera. Alex picked a dish which had no chance at setting up in time and then his on-camera presentation failed, leaving him without crème brulee. The loser was Alex, who went home to his fiancee for their marriage in one month (which means it has already happened).
I was very pleased with the concepts and the editing of this episode. They were excellent challenges for these chefs.
‘Top Chef’ recap: All-Stars duos must cook in harmony to ‘Get Your Phil’ at the LA Philharmonic
On last week&rsquos episode of &ldquoTop Chef,&rdquo Season 6 and 8 competitor Jennifer Carroll failed to tickle the taste buds of the judges with her Sunny Lemon Ginger Love sauce. She then lost in &ldquoLast Chance Kitchen&rdquo for underestimating the time that her beef sauce needed to thicken while Lisa Fernandes gets to move on in the after-show. This week, the remaining 10 chefs will celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Los Angeles Philharmonic. Read on for our minute-by-minute takes on the sixth episode of the season, &ldquoGet Your Phil.&rdquo
10:02 p.m. It&rsquos rise and shine time in the roomy house in the scenic Hollywood Hills. Nini Nguyen and Brian Malarkey share a love of crystals, apparently. She explains, &ldquoIt&rsquos &lsquoTop Chef.&rsquo Everyone at some point will have negative energy. And when they do I hold on to my crystal and I say, &lsquoGet away bad energy.&rsquo&rdquo Melissa King says she is superstitious too so she puts on her jade all the time, because her mom told her to.
10:04 p.m. The guest judge for the quickfire challenge is the James Beard Award-winning chef Chris Bianco, owner of Pizza Bianco. Kevin Gillespie says that Bianco is known as an artisan and a baker as well as one of America&rsquos greatest pizza masters. When host Padma Lakshmi asks if he could share some wisdom about baking. He says, &ldquoYou learn things and you burn things.&rdquo
THE QUICKFIRE CHALLENGE
10:06 p.m. Padma says, &ldquoWe want you to make your perfect dish. You just have to use flour.” There are assorted types of flour in canisters ranging from buckwheat to rice flour. What&rsquos missing? Any all-purpose flour. Apparently, alternative types of non-wheat flour are becoming a thing. Brian M. says the challenge is &ldquoway, way outside his comfort zone.&rdquo Padma adds there will be no immunity for the elimination challenge. But &ldquoto soften the blow, the chef who rises to the occasion will receive $5,000.&rdquo As it that pun weren&rsquot enough, she comments, &ldquoThat&rsquos a lot of dough, right?&rdquo
10:08 p.m. They get 30 minutes on the clock to complete their dish. Melissa has almond flour. She plans to make a duck-fat financier. Thank goodness the scroll on screen explains it&rsquos a small French almond cake. Bryan Voltaggio picked both hazelnut and rye flour and is making a crumb with kalamata olives. He will serve it in a fish dish. Gregory Gourdet chose tapioca flour and is making pancakes with blueberry maple syrup. Kevin shouts out, &ldquoWhat are you making, Malarkey?&rdquo Brian says, &ldquoI&rsquom making a coconut bread and coconut ice cream.&rdquo Karen Akunowicz brings up the last time he did ice cream as we flashback to a rather messy outcome in last week’s quickfire.
10:10 p.m. Brian says: &rdquoIt&rsquos the joke of the house &ndash Malarkey has got the ice cream machine again. But this time it should work just perfect.&rdquo He says he is going to make a great coconut honey ice cream. Somehow, he pulls it off. Lee Anne Wong has buckwheat flour. &ldquoDumplings are my jam,&rdquo she proclaims. But buckwheat doesn&rsquot work for dumpling dough since it has no gluten. So she will boil little dumpling balls instead. Nini makes a Vietnamese rice flour crepe, something she learned from her grandmother. Stephanie Cmar is using blue corn flour for the first time and is making gnocchi. She worries that it might turn into &ldquoblue poop.&rdquo
10:12 p.m. Five minutes are left. Malarkey&rsquos dough is in a fryer and he says the texture is like &ldquomud pie.&rdquo That isn&rsquot good. He fears he won&rsquot have something representing flour on his dish. Padma and Chris walk in while Brian is boo-hoo-ing. Time is called and he dubs his plate to be &ldquothe worst dish in the history of ‘Top Chef'” and &ldquoan epic failure.&rdquo Lee Anne is up first with her buckwheat polpette. Eric Adjepong has cooked porridge with roasted cassava and cornmeal. Chris tells him his choice of ingredients &ldquoplays very well together.&rdquo Gregory serves his nutty tapioca pancakes that look quite yummy to me. Chris compliments the lightness of his flapjacks.
10:14 p.m. Stephanie&rsquos Parisian gnocchi is next. Chris is pleased with the scale of her dish. Bryan serves his roasted sole with his hazelnut crumble. It looks, as always, as a fine dining dish. Karen has a spinach falafel. Chris&rsquo reaction? &ldquoReally, really nice.&rdquo Next is Nini with her Vietnamese flour crepe. Padma says she likes how lacy her crepes are. Next is Melissa&rsquos duck fat financier. Chris observes: &ldquoTexturally, that&rsquos really rich. Great job.&rdquo Kevin goes rustic with cornbread with beans and greens. Chris comments that the dish is a &ldquotad salty&rdquo but he likes the moisture and texture in his bread. Padma likes Brian&rsquos ice cream but alas, &ldquoThat wasn&rsquot the challenge.&rdquo
10:16 p.m. The bad news? Chris says to Bryan, &ldquoSurprisingly, this might be my favorite dish to eat.&rdquo But he didn&rsquot employ enough grains in the dish. Bryan is bothered that it this is his third quickfire at the bottom this season. He is determined to win the next one. And, as expected, the other Brian is right there with him. The good news? They loved Melissa&rsquos fancy cakes, Gregory&rsquos pancakes and Nini&rsquos crepes. The winner getting the dough is &hellip Gregory! This is his second quickfire win of the season to go along with his two elimination challenge wins.
THE ELIMINATION CHALLENGE
10:19 p.m. Padma tells the chefs that the challenge will celebrate the 100th anniversary of the L.A. Philharmonic and that tomorrow night is opening night of their 100th season. Lee Anne says she actually saw the orchestra play at the Hollywood Bowl years ago when she was a child. &ldquoIt&rsquos just an incredible experience.” Among their guests will be legendary conductor Gustavo Dudamel and 60 members of the orchestra.
10:22 p.m. It&rsquos time to draw knives. They each have one of five taste profiles on them &ndash sweet, salty, bitter, sour and umami. Padma tells them, &ldquoJust like in music, each instrument has a purpose. Each ingredient should as well in your dish.&rdquo The catch? &ldquoEach chef must pair up with another chef with a different flavor profile to create one cohesive dish that highlights the two tastes that you pulled.&rdquo Brian draws bitter and says, “I love bitter. I can&rsquot get enough endive and raddichio.&rdquo Nini (sour) and Karen (umami) quickly partner up. Kevin and Melissa make a match with their salty and sweet selections. Bryan and Eric make a bitter and sweet combo. And Gregory and Stephanie buddy up with salty and sour while Lee Anne with umami is stuck with Brian &ndash who threw her under the bus in the vegetarian challenge.
10:25 p.m. Padma suddenly tosses out some not-so-good news: &ldquoThis is a double elimination.&rdquo Nini recalls she was cut last season during a Kitchen Wars double elimination. As she says, understandably, &ldquoIt sucks.&rdquo She feels pressure since this is a harder season. The chefs brighten a bit when they learn they will get to visit the Walt Disney Concert Hall as the guest of maestro Dudamel, where they can soak up inspiration. They will have two hours to prep and cook at Otium restaurant before service begins. As for the guest judge, it’s Otium&rsquos chef and owner Timothy Hollingsworth.
10:28 p.m. Gregory says, &ldquoI just wanted to pick someone based on the taste.&rdquo Stephanie snarks back, &ldquoSo it wasn&rsquot because I am popular?&rdquo Gregory just laughs. He says he knows that he and Stephanie work well together. &ldquoWe won as a team before. So it just seems like a nice fit.&rdquo She asks if she can wear his vest and he complies. Melissa and Kevin are contemplating a dessert. Eric and Bryan feel good about their chances. Karen and Nini seem to be on the same page. But not so much Lee Anne and Brian who don&rsquot appear all that happy even seated next to one another on the drive to the concert hall.
10:33 p.m. The chefs admire the silvery Walt Disney Concert Hall as Kevin calls it &ldquostunning.&rdquo He admires the interior as well with its blond woods and the cup-shaped ceilings. He observes, “It almost looks like a cabbage leaf.&rdquo The conductor comes out and greets them.
10:35 p.m. Gustavo speaks in sacred tones as if the hall were a church. He says he loves the similarities between music and food. &ldquoFood is an art,&rdquo he states, &ldquoFor the flavor, for the feelings. Put them together and you create harmony.&rdquo Karen says being in the hall is like a dream come true. She shares that she was a music major when she started in college. Kevin asks how he handles music that have really strong contrasting elements inside them. Gustavo explains passionately, &ldquoIt is the best, because you have that all of the time. Every instrument sounds completely different. A violin can be a beautiful match with a bass drum.&rdquo
10:38 p.m. Karen and Nini are bent on grape tomatoes that burst with sour and umami. Gregory suggests miso cod for his salty component. Eric and Bryan who have sweet and bitter think about getting a pair of duck legs that would be bitter, sweet and roasted with a bit of smoke from the jus. Eric thinks the key to the challenge is to show restraint. He thinks of a West African spicy peanut stew usually made with beef, sweet potatoes and carrots along with a special caramel crust. Sounds perfect to me. Melissa likes the direction that she and Kevin are going in. They seem to have tossed the idea of dessert as they talk about roasted cabbage and fish sauce instead.
10:40 p.m. Lee Anne says beef is classic umami. &ldquoHowever, we shouldn&rsquot put a giant piece of steak on there.&rdquo Brian agrees, but then he suggests, &ldquoWhat if we cooked it in talo?&rdquo She says Brian goes in a million directions &ldquolike a cat with a laser pointer.&rdquo She struggles to edit him down. Off they go to Whole Foods where they have 30 minutes and $700 for each team. Lee Anne manages to take all the bitter endive in the store, leaving Bryan and Eric with none. Bryan decides to pivot to pork since his first choice meat isn’t available. Meanwhile, Karen and Nini are doing an Italian fish dish with a special broth.
10:42 p.m. Lee Anne lays down the law, telling Brian they don&rsquot need carrots because they are sweet. That&rsquos when she comes out with what might be the best and truest description of Season 17: &ldquoShopping with Brian Malarkey is like shopping with monkeys on crack.&rdquo
10:44 p.m. The chefs swoop into Otium to claim their prep spots. Nini asks what Kevin is doing. His reply is bleeped out. He quickly says, &ldquoJust kidding.&rdquo Nini fights back and calls him a bitch, though it’s all in good fun — Kevin is clearly a Method actor playing the salty member of his team. Melissa says they are going to top their braised cabbage with a cured pork crumble. Bryan is making a West African caramel sauce. He says, &ldquoIt is Eric&rsquos cuisine. I am confident in his ability to pull it off for sure. It just sounds delicious. It sounds like something I want to lacquer all over meat.&rdquo
10:45 p.m. Stephanie and Gregory do their sour and salty fish dish, and when Stephanie looks over she describes Lee Anne and Brian as an &ldquooil and water combination.&rdquo Sure enough, they are clashing over how to plate their dish. Brian says if they don&rsquot come to an agreement about how their dish is served, &ldquoThe wheels are about to fall off.&rdquo
10:47 p.m. Stephanie says, &ldquoThere definitely is a heightened sense of nerves today in that two people will be going home.&rdquo She adds that she feels a great deal of responsibility to make sure that Gregory and I are not on the chopping block, especially since I&rsquove been on the bottom forever now. At least, &ldquoWe have a clear idea of what we are doing.&rdquo
10:48 p.m. Stephanie and Gregory place their plates before the judges. He explains they had sour and salty as he describes their sea bass with miso. Head judge Tom Colicchio says every element in the dish is salty and sour. Gustavo adds that he put all the elements in his spoon and it was really well-balanced. Tom observes, &ldquoIt was like melody and harmony working together.&rdquo The flaw, according to Timothy, is the spice from the jalapenos. But it&rsquos apparently a hit with the musicians and with Padma.
10:50 p.m. Kevin and Melissa are next. He tells the judges that they were sweet and salty and that they are serving a fish sauce caramel roasted cabbage. Padma likes that the pair just focused on a vegetable. What she loves about their dish is that &ldquowhen you put it in your mouth, there&rsquos this bang of flavor, both sweet and salty.&rdquo Gustavo says the vegetable dish was addictive, which is a good thing.
10:52 p.m. Next is Team Trouble aka Brian and Lee Anne. She tells the judge that they had umami and bitter as they put together beef with a miso anchovy hollandaise and bitter greens. Padma asks (of course), &ldquoHow was it working as a team?&rdquo Brian says, &ldquoWe have known each other for a long time. So we&rsquore OG Top-Chef-fers over here.&rdquo Gustavo praises how they put their notes together, saying, &ldquoIt&rsquos very beautiful.&rdquo Gail Simmons offers high praise: &ldquoI think this is the best food we&rsquove had from Lee Anne and Malarkey.&rdquo Tom puts in his two cents: &ldquoIt&rsquos a beautiful dish.&rdquo
10:53 p.m. Eric and Bryan are next. Eric tells the judges they had sweet and bitter. &ldquoWe decided to do a play on a traditional Senegalese West African stew with maafe lacquer and bitter greens. Gail says, &ldquoThis dish is incredibly subtle and incredibly focused. But I think they could have drawn out the sweetness a lot more.&rdquo Timothy agrees: &ldquoI think that cooked-down apples or some sort of glaze or honey over the pork would have benefited them.&rdquo Tom also notes, &ldquoThe ratio of crust to meat was off.&rdquo
10:54 p.m. Last but not least is Nini and Karen&rsquos umami-sour dish. Karen says they made a tomato broth with poached cod and pickled cucumbers. She also gets a smile from the maestro by calling the broth the melody and the rest the harmony. As for the tomatoes, the chefs hope they act as a crescendo. &ldquoThey are like a bright popping point.&rdquo Alas, the judges think the tomatoes needed to be roasted. Says the conductor, &ldquoYou need a balance. That&rsquos true. Because some things are killing some other flavors.&rdquo
10:55 p.m. Eric says, &rdquoThis challenge was also a personality challenge. The fact that you are doing it with someone else, it&rsquos almost like that one voice has to be very clear.&rdquo Stephanie says, &ldquoWe&rsquore 10 now and we will be eight tomorrow. It&rsquos like mind-blowing.&rdquo
10:56 p.m. Tom says, &ldquoEvery dish had umami, sweet, sour, salty, bitter. But clearly the challenge was for those two that you chose were really prevalent in the dish. I think some of you did that to a better degree than others. All in all, I&rsquove got to say that hands down this was a fantastic meal.&rdquo Padma says that is what makes their decision even harder because, as you know, it&rsquos a double elimination.
10:57 p.m. Padma says all the dishes were fantastic but the judges had their favorites. Guest judge Timothy has the honor of announcing the triumphant dish. And the winners are &hellip Melissa and Kevin! Padma then says, &ldquoLee Anne and Malarkey, you guys were really close to winning this.&rdquo All Lee Anne can say is, &ldquoIt feels good.&rdquo Stephanie and Gregory get slammed for their spicy jalapenos but they are safe too.
10:58 p.m. Padma sadly delivers the news to Nini and Karen and Bryan and Eric that theirs were the two least favorite dishes and two chefs will be going home. The ladies failed to bring out the umami in their tomatoes and the guys lacked enough of the sweet element they needed. The eliminated chefs are &hellip Nini and Karen. Oops, there is a twist. They will get a chance to get back in the competition tonight as &ldquoLast Chance Kitchen&rdquo commences immediately as the best friends square off.
Next week: Action star Danny Trejo makes an appearance that features a machete and it appears the dreaded Restaurant Wars are on the horizon.
Be sure to make your predictions so that the contestants can see how they&rsquore faring in our racetrack odds. You can keep changing your predictions until just before the next episode airs every Thursday on Bravo. You&rsquoll compete to win a spot on our leaderboard and eternal bragging rights. See our contest rules and sound off with other fans in our reality TV forum. Read more Gold Derby entertainment news.