Saturday, May 10, 2008

"Top Chef: Chicago" Episode 7

The guest judge this time around was Johnny Iuzzini, the executive chef of Jean-Georges.

Quickfire: Make a dessert. Just that simple. The winner got their recipe placed in the show's official cookbook.

Spike (El Cheapo): Pineapple rum raisin souffle with toasted coconut.

Richard: Banana scallops with banana guacamole and chocolate ice cream.

Jen: Chocolate cake with chocolate-dipped banana bites. This didn't sound too impressive to me. But she also made another chocolate cake, with the other one being salted basil ganache.

Andrew: Banana and chocolate ravoli with cinnamon sugar and pudding on the side.

Nikki: Buttermilk cake with berry sauce. Boring.

Dale: "Halo-Halo" with shaved ice, avocado, mango, kiwi and nuts.

Lisa: Yogurt with fruit puree, fried wontons and strawberries. Fairly boring.

Mark: Pavlovas made with wattleseed.

Antonia: Bruleed lemon curd with lemon cake.

Worst: Antonia Lofaso, El Cheapo and Mark Simmons (his dessert wasn't classified one according to the guest judge).

Eligible for victory: Dale Talde, Lisa Fernandes and Richard Blais

Did Blais win again?...

...YES! In addition to the cookbook inclusion bonus, he got immunity one more time!

Elimination Challenge: The contestants were first taken to an improv comedy show. In the middle of it, the details of the next challenge revealed. Here, there were five teams of two. Each team had to cook something based on their three chosen inspirations from a hat. Their food would be served at the apartment to several local comics.

Spike and Andrew: Yellow, love, vanilla
Antonia and Lisa: Magenta, drunk, Polish sausage
Stephanie and Jennifer: Orange, turned-on, asparagus
Mark and Nikki: Purple, depressed and bacon
Dale and Richard: Green, perplexed, tofu

Everyone had a $150 budget.

Spike and Andrew: Squash soup with vanilla creme fraiche.

Stephanie and Jennifer: Menage a trois of orange with goat cheese, asparagus, salad and olive tapenade. Not good.

Dale and Richard: Tofu steak marinated in beef fat with green curry.

Antonia and Lisa: Sea bass with purple potato puree, chorizo and tequila sauce. I think they lost some points because they didn't include the tequila.

Mark and Nikki: Pork loin with sweet potatoes, grape sauce, jus and brussel sprouts.

Top teams: Spike & Andrew (whose dish was said to have been the best of the season thus far according to head judge Tom Colicchio) and Dale & Richard.

Winning team: Dale and Richard! Blais was on fire! Both won $2,500 worth of Calphalon kitchenware.

Bottom teams: Stephanie & Jennifer and Antonia & Lisa. The worst team was...

...Jennifer and Stephanie. Leaving the running next was...

...Jennifer Biesty.
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