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Oct 26, 2008 09:25 PM

Iron Chef America 10/26 Symon vs. Cosentino

Halloween special with offal as the secret ingredient. Any comments?

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  1. Let's hold off commenting until the show's over, or the winner's announced for us in PDT.

    1. I thought it was hilarious how Ruhlman and Knowlton were going at it right off the bat.

      1. The female judge was way too much of a culinary lightweight and offal-phobe to hold her own or my interest. Ruhlman and Knowlton were inspired choies for judges, tho. But where's Jeffrey when you need him? Or Anthony Bourdain?

        About halfway thru Cosentino's judging it was obvious he was down and would stay there. Too many "timid flavor" comments from Knowlton.

        Did anyone else notice Alton gave us no education about offal? He usually lectures about the secret ingredient for a minute or so, and I expected this for offal since the growing acceptance of it represents such a change in American eating.

        5 Replies
        1. re: KenWritez

          You know, I completely missed that about Alton. Which is peculiar because I like that about him (the way he educates about the history of the secret ingredient).

          What I noticed the most was that Symon kept pronouncing it "OH-full"

          1. re: Ralphie_in_Boston

            I thought it was Cosentino who did - but I noticed it too. Interestingly the scores were low all around. I don't eat it - too squeamish but couldn't help watching anyway.
            Thought the woman was a lightweight but didn't think she was phobic about it.
            I think the dish should taste good - as long as you can taste what it is, I don't think it needs to be overpowering. But more than just their juvenile bickering - I do think it's obvious that Knowlton and Ruhlman just have different palates. Which I actually think is kind of cool. Shows that even in the "top" you don't have to agree. Would have been a great place for Bourdain or Steingarten. And Ruhlman is going to turn into the "too oily" lady if he keeps saying everything needs more acid. :)

            1. re: AMFM

              I sorta thought Ruhlman gave Knowlton a few well-deserved slap-downs. Ruhlman can be a little "sneery" sometimes, but I like that when it is appropriate, and Knowlton deserved it.

              The fact that Knowlton announced early in the show that he felt the chefs would need to work hard to tame the various strong flavors of the offal, and then spent the entire judging segment whining about the flavors being too mild, well, that about sums him up, as far as I'm concerned.

            2. re: Ralphie_in_Boston

              Offal can be pronounced "OH-full" or "AW-full".

              I was at the Hunan restaurant CHOW tasting earlier this year here in Fresno and had tripe for the first time, and it was delicious! Chef Mike at Trelio, my favorite local restaurant, has also taught me to enjoy foie gras, sweetbreads, snails and frog legs.

              My next goal is try assorted offal (everything except blood, which I choose not to eat for religious reasons) and also whole roast pig. I've seen enough of it on Tony Bourdain's shows it looks great!

              1. re: KenWritez

                "Offal can be pronounced "OH-full" or "AW-full"."

                apparently so, but my dictionary says "AH-ful" or "AW-ful"

                I'm no English teacher but I'd never heard "OH-full" until watching that ep.

          2. DH is a more squeamish than I, he could not watch this episode and was quite shocked when I reminded him that I've eaten several of the items on the alter (Beef heart, beef/chicken/turkey liver, beef tongue). There were some things on the menu that I would not try tho! It was fun.

            1. I really enjoyed the show because it is so rare that I'm fascinated by the secret ingredient. When I've seen offal used on other shows it has been limited to a few varieties- and the education provided is about soaking it in milk to help the smell- I've not been exposed to so many varieties before and thought it was a great choice. I hope to see more like this in the future.

              1 Reply
              1. re: lhb78

                I enjoyed the show as well!

                I think Constentino was robbed, but I love him, and think Symon laughs like a hyena, but he has toned that down a bit.

                I normally enjoy Knowlton's snarkiness but he did truly annoy me with the "not nasty enough for me" comments (ok I'm paraphrasing)

                And than calling sweetbreads the gateway offal, so he was basically putting him down for even serving it? Well, they taste good.

                When we saw the commercials I thought it might be offal. I didn't realize Constentino was going to be on it though. I was on his website not so long ago and I didn't see anything on the blog.