I’m a bit behind because I just woke up from a thirteen hour nap. I am trying to sleep off this stupid nagging cold that continues to linger. So far it is not working. I think I will recap this and sleep a bit more. Perhaps the cold is just an excuse for sleeping under warm blankets during cold weather. I love that they are giving us a peek inside the Chef House this season. That is always one of my favorite parts.
It’s the mise en place challenge. Mise en place is just a French phrase for doing all the crap work necessary to begin cooking. It’s the stuff I will no longer do when I win the lottery. I’ll have a sous chef for that. Then I will waltz in dressed like June Cleaver and do the actual cooking and seasoning. Then I will leave and someone else will clean the kitchen. This is my lottery dream.
Laura’s nerves got to her in the mise en place challenge leaving the team with “the three bears” to win the round and cook head to head. It also left the winning team with only about ten minutes to cook their steak dish. It was crazy fast and hard to keep up with who is doing what. In the end, everyone seemed to have a really good dish that Padma and the guest chef loved. There didn’t seem to be a bad dish in the bunch. The bottom two were Rogelio, and Tyler (that is a surprise, he won last week and if very confident. Perhaps too confident?). The top two were Brother and Joe. I was really pulling for Claudette. Chef Joseph won. He is one of the three bears with Tyler and Bruce. Three big guys who room together in the house.
The elimination challenge is a farm to table four course progressive meal. Each course must use the secret ingredient that they won’t find out about until they get to the farm. On the trip over, Rogelio seems to be interested in Claudette. So cute. Meanwhile, I was wondering if the three bears where actual bears (big gay guys often with lots of body hair) or if they just like the name. They are all three drooling over the the guest chef, so question answered. There is a creamery on the farm that makes a variety of cheeses. So that is the secret ingredient! YUM! CHEEEEEESE! Let the cutting the cheese jokes begin.
I want to taste these cheeses! They have four cheeses and they need to use on in each course. The team that lost the quickfire has Mustache Joe who seems to be taking over the discussion of what cheese to pair with each course and shooting ideas that other chefs throw out, especially the female chefs. They are the green team for this challenge. I’m starting not to like Mustache Joe. Laura is particularly distressed by Mustache Joe running the show. Christopher is on dessert with Laura and Mustache Joe is still trying to boss him around. The green team is in trouble. Back at the house, Christopher tries to let Mustache Joe know he needs to stay in his lane, but the message is not received.
Mustache Joe is very cocky when Tom comes and he makes fun of Tu when Tom shows him a better way to tie up the lamb. Later Joe is more concerned with correcting Tu than focusing on his own dish.
The blue team has a fish course. I don’t know if I would have done that with a cheese component requirement but they seem confident and everyone is all in. Adrienne is running the fish course and has done fish and cheese pairings before. Claudette looks up to Adrienne, but Adrienne is confused as to why Claudette wanted to cold smoke the fish, yet she doesn’t know how to do it, so Adrienne is having to teach her to do her part. The fish dish is not going well. Is this a good time to say I told you so?
I can’t believe I am still sleepy. I really do have narcolepsy at times.
It’s time for service.
Up first is the blue team’s fish dish and the green team’s cheese and crackers. I mean I love cheese and crackers and this is a very high-end version of the concept. But still, could you not have called it something else? They used the rind to make the cracker and the creamery judge loves that. It looks like a hit. Padma actually asks the guest chef if she can have the rest of his cracker. That’s win for the green team right there. They are not a fan of fish and cheese. Look, I don’t even know why I try to write these recaps because I’m not a culinary expert. Even I know that fish and cheese, two of my favorite things don’t go together.
For the second course, the blue team made a beautiful pasta dish cooked by Joseph and Bruce with the feta cheese. I am starving just hearing the description. Wait, the green team brings out a ricotta dumpling made by Carrie and Mustache Joe’s big contribution was a butter sauce? Let’s send him home tonight. Sadly, the judge’s loved Carrie’s dumpling and the butter sauce. They also loved Joseph and Bruce’s dish. This one is too close to call.
For the third course, Tu, on the green team has had a problem grilling the rack of lamb evenly. There are many different temperatures going on. They struggle to plate and Mustache Joe whines in his talking head. I believe they also had problems with frenching the rack of lamb before cooking. Tyler and Rogelio on the blue team did a lamb with the Shepherd’s halo cheese melted into some wheat grass and other crap. It looks gross. I wouldn’t eat it and I am not a picky eater. The green team did a lamb chop with corn cheesy grits. Mustache Joe did the grits. Why is he out there twice? The judge didn’t like either dish. Neither did I and apparently Joe’s grits were sweet.
Finally for the blue team, Brother Love did a blueberry tart which for some reason he cut in half. I want the other half of my tart! It was topped with a ricotta almond and some candied grapefruit zest. For some reason they are giving feedback to the chefs for this round. They like the tart. The green team Christopher and Tanya, two of my favorites, did a fried dough stuffed with feta ice cream and a chocolate ganache and orange cream. The judges like it. Padma said that Christopher’s dessert that Mustache Joe kept trying to fuck with was probably her favorite desert ever on Top Chef. Take that Mustache Joe! The chef who owns the farm did not like the ice cream. He says he is a texture freak and it was a turn off for him. Tom says that his tart was underbaked.
Tom says that the green team’s first two dishes really best highlighted the cheese. He also says there was one really bad dish that may be enough to cancel out anything positive their team did. We will not find out until judges table.
The Judges Table
As much as I want Mustache Joe to go home, and I think the lamb chop with the sweet grits was probably the worst, he always seems to find a way to send a female chef home if at all possible. So I am dying to know what they thought.
Padma says their favorite team also had the worst dish of the day. Yep, I think they are talking about the green team. And I was right. They let them win despite having the worst dish. Fatima and Laura’s cheese and cracker dish they thought was amazing. They were blown away by the cracker that used the cheese rind. Hopefully this gives Laura a bit more confidence. Carrie gets all the glory for her dumpling. Suck it Mustache Joe. Christopher and Tanya’s dessert dish also got great praise. However, they hated the lamb chop and Mustache Joe’s grits. Oh, Tu. Learn when to be quiet. Saying that the dish would have been better to eat with your hands is not helping you at all. Plus, Tom already had to teach you how to tie up the lamb. Shut up and let Joe go down on the sinking ship. Carrie wins for her dumpling dish.
For the blue team, Rogelio’s lamb was a big problem as was Claudette’s poorly smoked trout. I guess this love affair is over before it begins? Such a tragic love story. I have no doubt my girl Claudette will go home. Because, that’s the way of the Tom Colicchio Vagicide.
And she does. She is pissed and so am I. However, she is blaming Adrienne and that is wrong.