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ICA - Symon et al vs. Culinary Students - Battle Balsamic (spoiler)

  • c

This show was a pleasant switch from the normal format, and it seemed like the students did better than some "professional" contestants (in spite of the final point spread). It was also refreshing to see how Symon reacted to their efforts.

Obviously, this particular show was set up as a nod to the culinary program at the Art Institutes being a show sponsor, but it was still an interesting twist on the norm.

And anyone know how Karine Bakhoum lost so much weight? She looked so thin, I hardly recognized her!

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  1. OT, but boy, did we ever notice! She not only looked thin, but she also looked like she aged about 10 years since the last time we saw her. I was going to google her and see if she had some horrible illness....

    I thought the show was kinda cute, with the students being all frantic, and pouring the ice-cream mix when the lid was still open.

    2 Replies
    1. re: linguafood

      Wonder if Karine went on the same sardine diet as Alton?!?!

    2. Nice episode. I thought Michael Symon was pretty classy with his tribute to the students just before the verdict. Still trying to get used to Alton as a size 2. Maybe if he grew a goatee or a soul patch it might be an easier transition.

      1. i actually thought michael looked thinner too. maybe food network isn't letting them eat? or maybe it was the camera angles? :)

        2 Replies
        1. re: AMFM

          I need one of those cameras ;-) I've been taking on weight like water on the Titanic lately.

        2. I thought the judges were a little hard on the students in the grading, especially on the plating. I thought their plates looked quite nice and thought they might have been graded down for being students.

          Ummmmm, did anyone else notice that Cat Cora's picture is no longer up there with the Iron Chefs? there were just three: Morimoto, Flay and Symon.

          4 Replies
          1. re: ChefJune

            I didn't notice that. So no more Cat, no more Mario, is that it?

            1. re: NYCkaren

              There are always only three pictures, so someone was always missing. Mario excised from the opening sequence was something else, however.

              I liked this theme episode, and don't mind "novelty" challengers on occasion. It kind of looked like Michael Symon had a "bring your son or daughter to work day" at points, though. They all looked so young.

              1. re: NYCkaren

                Cat could be absent right now because she and her partner both have newborns, so with two babies she is probably going to take a break (they now have 4 children in total)

                1. re: bermudagourmetgoddess

                  Cat also Just had the Grande Opening of her Restaurant Kouzzina Sept 25th. So she was in Orlando. However they are doing another "The Next Iron Chef" Contestant show, It Premiers tonight.

            2. Nov 2007 she was diagnosed with Cancer at the base of her tongue and throat with lymph node involvement. She lost 70 pounds following surgery to remove the mass, radiation, chemotherapy and a feeding tube.