Thursday, January 22, 2009

"Top Chef" 1/21

This week's guest judge is Stephen Starr.

QUICKFIRE CHALLENGE #9: Create one dish to showcase a prospective restaurant.

Since we've gone past the midway point of the season, immunity is now out of play. Two winners were chosen for this challenge.

Carla: Cod seared in tomato oil w/ Italian salsa & mache green salad- DUD (not enough salt)

Hosea: Shrimp w/ morel mushroom cream sauce, garlic potato puree & poached asparagus

Leah: Tempura poussin w/ dashi soy sauce & rice wine vinegar

Stefan: Fried white asparagus w/ trout, asparagus salad & white asparagus soup

Jeff: Grilled salmon w/ sunchoke & artichoke puree, grilled corn & asparagus salad- DUD (too mushy)

Radhika: Pan-seared cod w/ butter braised corn, spinach & chorizo w/ cream sauce

Jamie: Chilean sea bass w/ creamed corn, bacon, peas & garlic scape

Fabio: Tuna & swordfish carpaccio, roasted vegetable salad & filet mignon sandwich- DUD (too salty)

The winners were...

...Radhika & Leah! They each became a team captain for the next Elimination Challenge.

ELIMINATION CHALLENGE #9: It's that time again- RESTAURANT WARS! Here are the teams:

1. Radhika, Jamie, Carla, Jeff
2. Leah, Hosea, Fabio, Stefan

Each team had a $3,000 shopping budget, and they had six hours to prep at Bridgewater's. Here were the restaurant names for both teams:

Team Radhika: Sahana
Team Leah: Sunset Lounge

The Leah & Hosea love story continues, since they're both still alive.


1. Whole-wheat naan bread w/garlic oil
2. Curried carrot soup w/ smoked paprika & raita
3. Chickpea cake w/ seared scallop, masala tomato sauce & arugula salad

1. White lentil tabouli, seared snapped, tomato water & pea shoots
2. Cinnamon & saffron braised lamb shank w/ Israeli couscous

1. Spiced chocolate cake, creme fromage & cashew brittle- DUD
2. Fig & minted frozen yogurts w/ baklava cigars- DUD


Amuse-bouche: Vegetable roll w/ mushrooms, carrots, cabbage & sweet chili sauce- DUD

1. Tuna & salmon sashimi, radish salad & Yuzu vinaigrette
2. Coconut curry bisque w/ shrimp dumplings

1. Braised beef short ribs w/ ginger vegetables & beef demi-glace
2. Seared black cod w/ fresh vegetables & Chinese cabbage- DUD (fish was undercooked; the underneath part was too salty)

1. Chocolate rice parfait, grapefruit jelly & pineapple
2. Lemongrass & ginger panna cotta peach puree w/ ginger honey

Palate cleanser: Frozen mango, bitter chocolate & mint lollipop

The winners were...

 a narrow margin, Sunset Lounge! The individual winner was Stefan; he got some GE appliances. Stefan is the first three-time Elimination Challenge winner this season!

The Sahana member sent packing this week was...

...captain Radhika Desai.
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