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Top Chef - D.C. - Ep. #11 - 08/25/10 (Spoilers)

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LOL! Interesting way to start off the episode - in the morning at the TC House, Ed comes out of his room in Tiffany's dress when he gets up in the morning! Too funny!

And Kelly says in the confessional she wasn't surprised that Amanda was in the bottom 3 last challenge; she wants Amanda to go home. Meanwhile, Angelo is working through his brain to get himself psyched back up, while Amanda is laughing at Angelo saying mantras to himself. I'm wondering if Amanda and Angelo are going to be featured prominently in the bottom group this week, Magical Elves?

And then there were six! For the QuickFire, Padma starts to say various food sayings: Top Dog, The Big Cheese, Top Banana, Flash in the Pan...Padma's trying to get across the point of the QF, which is create a dish based on various Food Idioms. The winner's recipe will go into Schwann's frozen meals delivery service.

Kevin - Bring Home the Bacon
Amanda - The Big Cheese
Kelly - Sour Grapes
Ed - Hot Potato
Tiffany - Spill the Beans
Angelo - Bigger Fish to Fry

As they start the challenge, Ed is trashing Amanda in the confessional, while Angelo is saying that he thinks that Amanda is a dark horse. Amanda is getting a LOT of confessional time, which Angelo is talking to himself a lot.

Ed's Hot Potato gnocchi dish looks GREAT! Angelo makes a good point about Kevin's Bacon 3-way dish - it would virtually impossible to become a frozen dish.

Rick Moonen didn't like Kelly's Sour Grapes dish, nor Amanda's Big Cheese baked mac & cheese dish.

The dishes that were on the top were Kevin's bacon dish - so maybe Moonen isn't thinking about how the dish could be frozen as well? Ed's Potato dish was also a favorite of his.

And Ed wins the Quickfire! Angelo said he can see Ed's face being on the wrapping of the frozen dish, as "Ed's face kind of looks like a potato." ;-)

For the Elimination Challenge, they're going to take over two concession stands at Washington Nationals Park on a Game Day during the pre-game. They're tasked with creating game snacks, but with a higher-end flair to the Scooby Snacks. They're working as ONE team to create the snacks.

Chef Rick Moonen is again the guest judge, and baseball players Adam Dunn, Matt Capps and John Lannan make an appearance.

During planning, it gets interesting - Amanda said she wanted to do something cold with crab, but THEN Kelly said she was planning on doing crab cakes - could Amanda do something with fish instead of crab? And Amanda capitulates! WHY? WHY do they give in when someone else says they want to do something using the same ingredient? So now she's going to make tuna tartare? Rut-roh! for Amanda. Kevin's going to do a chicken skewer with a Romesco sauce and fried potatoes alongside. That sounds good to me!

Tiffany's making something smart for ballgame fare - she's making a high-end version of sausage and peppers - AND she's making her own sausage! Angelo is braising pork (not sure what he's making though), and Ed is doing shrimp and corn poppers. Don't know HOW he does it, as he's running around the TC kitchen like a whirling dervish, but Ed's difficult prep on his poppers actually gets done before the clock runs out.

Back at the house, Amanda realized they didn't have anyone to take orders in the Nationals' kitchen. Angelo steps up when no one else says they'll do it and says he'll take the orders. Lots more confessional talk from Amanda as well. I'm thinking one of those two are going home? And then Kevin is saying he doesn't trust Angelo in taking orders? Why? Angelo would potentially have to trust more that someone is going to plate his food properly when it's called out by him!

At the ballpark kitchen the next day, Angelo realizes he can't cook his dish and take orders at the same time. So Angelo is saying he's not going to take all the orders; he gives guest check order pads to everyone, but Kevin said "We're not going to do that!" and throws it back at him. He said that Angelo never should have taken on the role of the orders. I *do* have to agree with that. Ed said he'd cook Angelo's dish, and both Tiffany and Amanda said they'd help plate and get it up to the pass.

Tom brings the 3 (very large!) Washington Nationals' players into the kitchen with only 25 minutes to finish cooking. Kelly's saying how cute the players are, and Amanda said "All I can think of is 'Tom, get out of the kitchen and take your tree trunks with you!" LOL

Comments by the cheftestants just as the crowd is about to walk up to the concession stands: "Fifty-six seconds!" "It's about to get ugly, boys and girls!" "It got ugly the minute you walked into this place!" :-)

Tiffany's sausage meatballs and peppers and Kelly's crab cakes are the hot favorites. Kevin's chicken skewers are favored by the ball players, but so are Tiffany's sausage meatballs.

Kelly's crab cakes and sweet potato fries and Tiffany's meatball sub both look WONDERFUL! Moonen's comment "Raw fish at a stadium - that takes some (base)balls!" is still funny. Padma finds Kelly's crab cakes a bit salty, and Tom Colicchio said "If the challenge was to get you to drink more beer, it worked!" :-)

Angelo's sweet glazed pork looks good, too, as did Kevin's chicken skewers, and Ed's corn and shrimp fritters - ALL THREE look great! But how do they taste? Ed gets good reviews on his dish, but Kevin's dish isn't getting a lot of orders. Someone said "Because of all of these interesting dishes, why would you come to a ballpark and order chicken?" Hmmm...

Just before going to commercial, Angelo is defending himself at JT. Was it because he's on the bottom? They then show Angelo talking late at night with his Russan fiancée and Angelo saying "When I win the $250K, the first thing I'm going to do is get her over here from Russia and get all the visa stuff figured out."

Padma comes into the Stew Room, and asks to see ALL of them at JT... So Angelo does defend himself in front of everyone. Padma asks how Angelo took over the orders and he explains...sort of. But hey - did Tiffany just throw Angelo under the bus a little bit? And then Kevin did as well. Not sure that'll factor into final judging, however.

Ed's fritters were in the top group, as was Tiffany's meatball dish. Moonen announces that the winner is: Ed's fritters! And HE gets a double win! WHOA! He wins a trip to Australia! He also wins Moonen's new cookbook. :-)

So the remaining four of Angelo, Amanda, Kevin and Kelly. Tom calls out Amanda for grinding her tuna for the tartare the day before. Kevin's called out for the soggy fries. Kelly's called out for her slightly soft crab cakes, but I think she'll stay in, as they seemed to like the flavor of the crab cakes overall. Angelo's pork dish was called out for too much sugar and a LOT of soggy bread to the amount of pork. And they're sent back while judges deliberate. And Kevin's frites on top of the skewer was called a "fatal mistake" by Padma.

OK, who do I think is going home? Amanda or Kevin. But it could be any one of them. Yup - it's Amanda going home! She's the only sous chef that made it that far.

Next week for the last challenge before Final 4 - they're at NASA and Buzz Aldrin will be a special guest!

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  1. If Kelly goes home I'm out. They are making Amanda the true B which I really think she is not.
    This is the most Chaotic episode by far so far.

    13 Replies
    1. re: chris2269

      Well, it looks like her crab cakes were well-favored by the crowd. But now here's a thought - we didn't see the judges asking anyone else for their opinion. So perhaps Kelly's salty crab cakes are going to put her on the bottom with Kevin's poor chicken skewers and Angelo defending himself as I noted in the original post is defending himself against Kevin getting all up in his face before cooking started? But based on all of that, I still think Kevin's poor showing might put him out. I still can't believe that Amanda's tuna tartare won't put her in the bottom though!

      ETA - guess I was right except that Amanda IS in the bottom 4.

      1. re: LindaWhit

        OK Kelly is safe so I'm OK. She is really the only chef I would make a trip to visit thier restaurant. I have eaten at Angello's and was not impressed.

        1. re: chris2269

          Kelly seems to me like a very selfish person, definitely looking out for #1 (herself) almost always. Sure, others are too - but her version seems somewhat insidious and disturbing in a sense. Quietly bullying in a certain way too. Step away from her if she ever "asks" you to do something - like give up your beets, or give up your crab dish idea, because SHE wants it...you will go home for it.

          My personal views, your mileage may vary.

          1. re: huiray

            That's why I carped about it in my original post. I couldn't believe Amanda backed down from using crab. It's quite possible if she hadn't done so, her crab dish wouldn't have sent her home as the tuna tartare did.

            1. re: LindaWhit

              Well someone had to go home, and it still might have been Amanda!

              1. re: Ruth Lafler

                True, but Angelo and Kevin's dishes weren't very well received either. Kevin's soggy fries seemed to get a lot of attention, as did Angelo's soggy bread.

                But I did change my post above slightly from "I'll bet..." to "It's quite possible..." :-)

            2. re: huiray

              Each of them SHOULD be looking out for themselves, if they're not. No one is making anyone give up their ideas for Kelly. I don't begrudge her the guts to suggest they should.

              I think Angelo's quiet suggesting detrimental things to others is similar, yet you're not picking on him.

              Each of them is there to win, not to help the others. And now, especially when they are down to the wire.

              1. re: ChefJune

                I think you can look out for yourself yet be able to help others too when it does not undercut yourself. Season 6's contestants did this frequently. To me, Kelly's 'requests' have more of a touch of sneaky shafting than of 'guts'. We see this differently, I guess.

                As for Angelo - fine, I'll say that he should not have given Amanda that advice. However, she made the first move (ditto Kelly 'made the first move' in making her request), and Angelo responded. I think his advice was misguided, even wrong (a strike against him in terms of his technique) but I don't think it was malicious. I do not subscribe to the school of thought that ascribes evil intent to anything that he says to others by way of advice.

                ETA: Angelo did say something about putting oil on it to stop the oxidation, I think, in one of those 'asides' and that she should have known it. A rewatch is merited to confirm this - in which case I would qualify my comment above about his technique a little.

                1. re: huiray

                  I also recall Angelo saying she should have known to top it with oil to prevent oxidation. That he didn't mention it to her is telling.

                  That being said, you make a good point. Angelo may be giving other contestants bad or incomplete advice, but if they're willing to go to him to ask him his opinion -- and then go ahead and do what they say -- they are at least as responsible for the result they get.

              2. re: huiray

                I wonder why it matter that someone else used crab? More than one person made a sandwich type fair.

                1. re: huiray

                  Amanda signed her own death warrant by trying to do a dish she was unfamiliar with in an unfamiliar setting this late in the competition. I admire the guts, and she clearly has skills, but she should have never backed down from Kelly.

                  Tonight sealed my dislike for Kelly. She seems like she is decent in the kitchen, but she is a complete bitch, and I will relish seeing her go.

                  1. re: TuteTibiImperes

                    I thought it was a bad decision for her to do the tuna tartare, too. If there is no easy time to prep it, don't do it. If you want to do seafood, there are many options. And, if it bothers you that Kelly is pushy, don't back down from her. Don't do it and then complain. I don't like Kelly but she's playing the game to win. She's not TIffany who wants to win because she's proved to be the best. I really like Tiffany.

                2. re: chris2269

                  I don't care for any of the manipulated drama of reality TV, but I can confirm that Restaurant Kelly Liken IS worth visiting.

            3. Wow. I'm kind of surprised Amanda is going home. They seemed to like the flavor, just not the appearance. They seemed to be uninspired by Kevin's dish. I'm fine with her going home, mind you, because I think she was out of her league. Just guessed wrong on this one.

              Overall, a fairly uninteresting episode. I want some "higher end" challenges at this point in the competition.

              10 Replies
              1. re: debbiel

                I do have to agree on the relatively uninteresting episode (although I did like the Quickfire Challenge). It seemed more about the drama than about the cooking, what with Angelo and Kevin going at it.

                1. re: debbiel

                  Tom's blog is up explaining why Amanda's tartare sent her packing:

                  http://www.bravotv.com/top-chef/seaso...

                  "When Eric Ripert goes so far as to use the word “offensive” in connection with fish, what more is there to say? As you’ve no doubt noted in the episodes thus far, he is encouraging of the chefs and seems truly to be rooting for them. Amanda’s permitting her tuna to oxidize was hands down the most egregious of the errors made by the chefs in this challenge. People are frightened of eating fish that has spoiled. Even the appearance of spoilage will engender an aversion to a dish, whether the fish has actually begun to turn or not. Anyone eating Amanda’s tuna tartare first had to overcome our reflexive impulse to turn away from the fish because of its off-putting color. And this is an utterly unacceptable obstacle. To be honest, Eric was a bit afraid to eat the dish. He actually said, “it’s dangerous — it could kill me.”

                  That pretty much says it all. AND Chef Ripert's vlog's title and description is " Spitting Out Amanda's Food" - Eric Ripert reveals a moment at the ballpark that didn't make it on-air. "

                  And he seems to think that Angelo conspired to send Amanda home by telling her it was OK to grind the tuna the day before.

                  1. re: LindaWhit

                    I would give someone misinformation if they were making fun of me too.

                    1. re: LaLa

                      Huh? Who was making fun of Angelo?

                      1. re: LindaWhit

                        Amanda - when she was laughing at his praying to his chef deities etc ?

                        1. re: huiray

                          So she's trash-talking him just as Kevin's trash-talked others just as Angelo has trash-talked others just as everyone has trash-talked the others. She did it in the confessional - unless we see that she said something to his face, Angelo would have no idea that she had done so.

                          I think Angelo is just giving misinformation because that's the way he is - he's manipulative, as others have mentioned further upthread.

                          http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/7301...

                          1. re: LindaWhit

                            < "She did it in the confessional - unless we see that she said something to his face, Angelo would have no idea that she had done so." >
                            ------
                            Of course. I think LaLa was making a sort-of droll comment, as someone with 'insider' knowledge, as was I.

                            <Shrug> We disagree a little about Angelo. C'est la vie.

                    2. re: LindaWhit

                      i think she asked angelo HOW to grind it, not WHEN. And, regardless, it is not his responsibility to tell her how to stop a dish from oxidizing when it sits out. everyone who has made a pesto or a guacamole, or a million other VERY common dishes knows something has to be done, and that something is usually oil. To blame her not doing on angelo reveals more about one's dislike for angelo, than any maliciousness on his part. She made an error. at this level of competition, that is enough.

                      1. re: thew

                        Umm....I don't disagree with you. I didn't say it was Angelo's responsibility to tell her how to stop the oxidation. Nor did Ripert or Colicchio. Colicchio said "Amanda’s permitting her tuna to oxidize was hands down the most egregious of the errors made by the chefs in this challenge."

                        Note the key words - "Amanda permitting..."

                        You said "To blame her not doing on angelo reveals more about one's dislike for angelo".....I'm not really sure what that means.

                    3. re: debbiel

                      At this point everyone should know better than to get advice from Angelo. That being said, even I know that grinding that meat the day before was a bad idea.

                      But after watching the reactions at JT, I really did expect Kevin to leave. I suspect he's next.

                    4. yawn.

                      i'm so glad Amanda is *finally* gone, but i thought this episode was a total snore. something was wrong with my DVR recording so i couldn't see most of the first round of JT and a couple of other random clips... and i didn't even care!

                      random observation: that's two consecutive weeks in which one chef won both challenges.

                      4 Replies
                      1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                        Tiffany has two double wins, so actually there three times.

                        1. re: araknd

                          Has that ever happened in a season before?? I don't remember...

                          1. re: becky315

                            The first chef to win a quickfire and the elimination challenge in the same show was Michael Midgley in Season 2. He was an unlikely chef to be the first to achieve this feat.

                            1. re: John E.

                              " He was an unlikely chef to be the first to achieve this feat."
                              :-)
                              I nominate John E. for understatement of the thread.

                      2. Random thoughts:

                        I wonder if this was one of those times where the judges immediately knew who was going home (Amanda, obviously), and the editors had to work to keep us guessing. A kitty-litter gray tuna tartare like that would have been completely unservable at a restaurant. Of course, I wasn't there to taste how serious the mistakes of the other chefs were.

                        You guys notice that Ed talks some really major trash about some of his competitors? The editors have previously made villains out of other contestants for answering presumably prompted questions about their opponents a little too bluntly and by then taking said statement out of context (example: probably M. Voltaggio's comments last season about Kevin Gillespie cooking like he does on his days off) But with Ed, I can't imagine the prompting and imaginative editing that would make for 'he/she is obnoxious, a slob, can't cook, no technique, lucky to still be here.' I dunno - I just think it makes him look bad that he is so happy to publicly eviscerate whoever he perceives to be the weakest chef left in the contest that week.

                        I feel sorta like the other chefs at the judges table shouldn't have called out Angelo's waffling on taking orders. Yeah, I understand he made a verbal commitment and tried to back out of it. But the thing is, ultimately he took one for the team, reluctant or not. He helped them out, not vice versa. Did they really expect him to mention his attempted change of heart in front of the judges in the interest of full disclosure?

                        I don't know the exact time constraints of this elimination challenge, but I wonder if Angelo might have had time to just make steamed buns for his dish. They don't take that long. Though they are a bit labor intensive (at least the way I've made them). Seems from the comments like they would have worked better. At any rate, I had been hoping that Angelo, like him or not, would start busting out some really impressive cooking as the competition came to the home stretch. The last few weeks have been depressing.

                        10 Replies
                        1. re: cowboyardee

                          Michael Voltaggio would have made his own sandwich bread. Remembering the episode he made his own bread for ceasar salad croûtons

                          1. re: dach

                            I remember as well. When asked if he was being perhaps too ambitious, his reply: "come on, it's just bread."

                            Or something like that.

                          2. re: cowboyardee

                            < "I feel sorta like the other chefs at the judges table shouldn't have called out Angelo's waffling on taking orders. Yeah, I understand he made a verbal commitment and tried to back out of it. But the thing is, ultimately he took one for the team, reluctant or not. He helped them out, not vice versa. Did they really expect him to mention his attempted change of heart in front of the judges in the interest of full disclosure?" >

                            -------------

                            I agree. Angelo scored points in my book for stepping up the previous night, while the others made no move to do so. When he saw the actual situation the next day, he in effect tried to renegotiate the order-taking situation and Kevin simply started screaming and shouting. (Kevin does this a lot. He is definitely a jerk.) Angelo gives up, Ed steps up to help with Angelo's food and Kelly and Tiffany come on board, kind of, I think. Guess who made no move to help Angelo.

                            Angelo could have phrased his answer better at JT, but I think Tiffany did throw Angelo under the bus even though she helped Angelo earlier. Not cool, woman. Kevin? Of course he piled on - I would have been surprised if he didn't, after what has been shown of his crude and nasty behavior/character the past weeks.

                            1. re: huiray

                              I agree I can not bear to watch Kevin,,,,someone need to pop him in the mouth.

                              1. re: huiray

                                Kevin seems a bit eager to whip out the dagger when someone's back is turned, but Angelo shouldn't have waffled after he volunteered. He tried to make a grand gesture by offering to expedite before he knew what the situation was, and then tried to suddenly change the plan on everyone when he saw it wasn't optimal. If he wasn't willing to do it regardless of the situation, he shouldn't have volunteered.

                              2. re: cowboyardee

                                Re: your steamed buns comment - check out the extended JT video - Tom Colicchio says "We were questioning the soft roll [Angelo's soft roll] and that's why I asked him [Angelo] why. He wanted to make that rice bun - you know, what you typically get with pork buns"...at least that's what I think I'm hearing. So Angelo *did* want to make them, but perhaps he didn't have time?

                                http://www.bravotv.com/top-chef/seaso...

                                They also talk about Amanda cutting up and grinding the tuna the day before.

                                1. re: LindaWhit

                                  Every time I read one of the 'what I would do' comments is that I wish that in the down time, instead of Top Chef Masters, Bravo would have a Top Chef Fans-- in which all the armchair chefs participate,

                                  That would be fun.

                                  1. re: Lizard

                                    Participatory Theater. I like it. :-)

                                    1. re: Lizard

                                      "Bravo would have a Top Chef Fans-- in which all the armchair chefs participate."
                                      _______________________________________

                                      That's essentially Food Challenge on Food Network.

                                      1. re: ipsedixit

                                        I don't think you would find Eric Ripert judging that show. After his reaction to the tuna and the chicken, he'd probably be scared to death of what ever the fans prepare.

                                2. Two more Asian dishes for Angelo! It looked like they all did a good job, except for Amanda's oxidized tuna. I thought that while it was well done, Tiffany's dish was pretty safe -- I'm guessing there are a lot of ballparks where you can buy a meatball sandwich (including, I noticed last week, the Oakland Coliseum, which doesn't have nearly the gourmet offerings of some of the newer ballparks).

                                  31 Replies
                                  1. re: Ruth Lafler

                                    < "Two more Asian dishes for Angelo! " >
                                    ------
                                    <Shrug>. Why not? Notwithstanding previous discussion on this topic, cooking "Asian" IS his style. (Yes, of course it would have been splendid if he did something French, say, and did it well)

                                    None of the others really cooked 'outside' their style, either, or deviated from some form of their normal "American cuisine", from what I could tell.

                                    1. re: huiray

                                      Well it is probably going to work out pretty good for Angelo since they are doing the finale in Singapore.

                                      1. re: LaLa

                                        Yes, in theory it should.
                                        (Psst...that's s spoiler - are you a reader of TWoP too?)

                                        1. re: huiray

                                          It's not a spoiler as it is clearly on bravotv.com.

                                          1. re: huiray

                                            No it was on Bravo....they are advertising it so I don't think that constitutes as a spoiler.Does it?If so I am sorry.

                                            1. re: LaLa

                                              Oh, it is? OK, I just looked and yes it is - it must be a very recent posting, though. S'pore as the finale location was 'known' back in July as revealed on the spoiler thread on TWoP (***SPOILER***: as are the final four...and maybe more...DO NOT look there if you don't want to know)

                                              1. re: huiray

                                                I haven't read it, but how does TWoP know who the final 4 are and "maybe more"? Do they have a super-secret spy?

                                                1. re: LindaWhit

                                                  A poster there happened to observe the taping and posted about it. (Then there are other later posts...which may or may not be foilers instead)

                                                  1. re: LindaWhit

                                                    They're very well connected. Among other things, TWoP is owned by Bravo, so I imagine people talk around the (virtual) water cooler/espresso machine. Also, if Bravo wanted to "leak" something to TWoP that would be good for driving readers to both sites and give TWoP a competitive advantage over other fan sites.

                                                    1. re: Ruth Lafler

                                                      Ahhh, didn't realize Bravo owned TWoP. And yes, you're right on the competitive advantage.

                                                      @huiray: But I'm surprised they allow the leaks from the poster who posted it. Doesn't TWoP use the black bars across a potential spoiler that the read just has to highlight to actually read it?

                                                      1. re: LindaWhit

                                                        < "@huiray: But I'm surprised they allow the leaks from the poster who posted it. Doesn't TWoP use the black bars across a potential spoiler that the read just has to highlight to actually read it?" >
                                                        ------
                                                        Yes, that is normally done - although I think the poster has to 'invoke'/format it to use those black bars. I'm not sure "they" edit the posts with consistency to block out such things, not on a SPOILER thread, after all...:-)

                                                        The greater problem with TWoP in my opinion are the nazi moderators and their curious (to me) admonitions as to what and how you can post in terms of decorum. (Did you know that you can't start a post with "Uhh" or "Umm" because it is considered rude by TWoP and you will be deleted and warned?

                                                        1. re: huiray

                                                          Ummmm.....LOL! at your last comment. ;-)

                                                          And I didn't realize the spoiler was in the spoiler thread. That's the one I try to avoid. I've just seen those black bars in other threads about an episode before where someone let slip a little something that was a spoiler.

                                                          1. re: huiray

                                                            TWoP doesn't require spoiler bars in a spoiler thread -- that would be ridiculously redundant! In fact, you'll be admonished for inappropriate use of spoiler tagging!

                                                            I agree the moderators at TWoP are strict and at times unreasonable and arbitrary. However, their policies keep it the only fan boards I'll read because they aren't full of stupid illiterate people gushing indiscriminently.

                                                            1. re: Ruth Lafler

                                                              And TWoP's write-ups of various shows are pretty damn funny. :-)

                                                              1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                TWoP moderators are strict indeed. I post on the Home Shopping forum and we aren't allowed to post about shows that are airing, so if we want to point out, say,the stripper pole that HSN was selling the other night, we have to wait for the show to end. However, on the Morning Joe thread you are allowed to post about Mika going off the deep end while the show is airing. <shrug>

                                                                1. re: Manassas64

                                                                  Some additional tidbits...
                                                                  http://www.google.com/search?q=reputa...

                                                                  1. re: huiray

                                                                    Wow.

                                                                    1. re: huiray

                                                                      Thanks & LOL

                                                                      They are the internet equivalent of shopping mall security guards.

                                                2. re: LaLa

                                                  thats as silly a comment as "hamburgers would be good, because it is being held is the USA"

                                                  singapore is a pretty international city/country, so people eat outside their own immediate culture. and "asian cuisine is such a broad category as to be fairly meaningless - why should someone from afghanistan prefer food from japan to food from south america?

                                                  1. re: thew

                                                    What I meant....because he cooks more international vs Tiffany that cooks more American leaning.

                                                    1. re: LaLa

                                                      Is cooking "more international" better than cooking "more American leaning"?

                                                      1. re: chicgail

                                                        not for me but the conversation was about the finale being in Sinapore

                                                        1. re: LaLa

                                                          again, so what?

                                                          the judges will be people versed in food. good food. do you think someone from sinagpore cannot understand or appreciate tiffany's food? and less than angelo can appreciate "asian" food?

                                                          makes zero sense to me.

                                                          1. re: thew

                                                            I may not agree with you on matters of baseball, but here you are right on. This line of argument makes absolutely no sense save for to function as some kind of fantasy that the only place capable of change and diversity is the US.
                                                            And come on, maybe they (if I choose to pretend that Singapore isn't one of the most globalised and international places on the planet) will love Tiffany's ethnic cuisine-- provided they don't get all wrapped up in a debate as to how authentic it is.

                                              2. re: Ruth Lafler

                                                BTW, did anyone read the review for Plein Sud (Ed's restaurant) in yesterdays NYT? He got slammed pretty hard. http://events.nytimes.com/2010/08/25/...

                                                1. re: huiray

                                                  Robert Sietsema of The Village Voice slammed Plein Sud equally hard (if not harder) a few weeks ago.
                                                  http://www.villagevoice.com/2010-08-0...
                                                  So hard in fact that I was wondering if Ed had stolen Sietsema's girlfriend too. Now with the times piling on, I guess Plein Sud must really have some problems, or else Ed must REALLY get around.

                                                  1. re: cowboyardee

                                                    > "I was wondering if Ed had stolen Sietsema's girlfriend too." >
                                                    ------
                                                    Heh. HEH.

                                                  2. re: huiray

                                                    Whoa. "Five Guys does better." in reference to the Plein Sud burger.

                                                    And in Sietsema's review, I think he does Ripert and Colicchio a disservice in saying "Food that merely looks great is the objective of the show—since the home audience can't taste anything—and it seems as if a lot of that attitude has rubbed off on Plein Sud."

                                                    Colicchio and Ripert aren't just looking for "food that merely looks good."

                                                    1. re: LindaWhit

                                                      I haven't read Sietsema's review, but I agree with what you said. And this is one of the big problems I have with Gordon Ramsey's Master Chef show. What's the deal with only tasting the three best-looking dishes to determine the winner? I'd rather eat something that looks like crap but tastes good than vice versa.

                                                      1. re: Miss Needle

                                                        Agreed with the Master Chef format of only tasting the top 3 best-looking dishes. But I think their premise is that you eat with your eyes first and that *most* people wouldn't want to eat something that didn't at least look good first.

                                                      2. re: LindaWhit

                                                        Colicchio and his latest restaurant (Colicchio & Sons = C&S) has had mixed reviews, with Sam Sifton's being the only really positive one amongst the usual critics. C&S has been both panned heavily and praised extravagantly at the same time by various diners/posters.
                                                        A sampling:
                                                        http://dinersjournal.blogs.nytimes.co...
                                                        http://nymag.com/restaurants/reviews/...
                                                        http://www.newyorker.com/arts/reviews...
                                                        http://newyork.grubstreet.com/2010/03...
                                                        http://ny.eater.com/archives/2010/03/... (read the comments too. Heh.)

                                                  3. Some random thoughts as well...

                                                    If you saw that your tuna had oxidized but was still good, wouldn't you maybe try to throw it on the flat top and make tuna cakes so at least you wouldn't scare the crap out of the people consuming your dish? Maybe make tuna lettuce wraps or something? Tuna salad?

                                                    While I'm not a huge fan of Angelo's, I do notice that he doesn't say anything really bad about his fellow contestants. He's very positive. Even when he's making fun of them, it's not anything terrible (i.e., Ed's potato head), but rather light-hearted. Must be those Anthony Robbin's tapes! I hope he's able to recover and starts putting out better food.

                                                    Also, I've made some decent steamed buns in a couple hours just using flour, sugar, salt and baking powder. And I knead by hand! So I totally don't understand the use of the hot dog buns. Perhaps he keeps taking these shortcuts because he's so exhausted at this point in the game.

                                                    With regards to Ed's trashing of his fellow competitors, I think it's a New York thing. A friend of mine will verbally annihilate me and everyone else around, but it's really just the way she talks. When she calls you an idiot and a lazy slob, she means you made a mistake and that you could have done something a bit more energetically.

                                                    ETA: Also, my favorite part of this season is watching Michael V. recreate the winning dishes. Thanks to the CH'er them mentioned that last week! Now I feel like I'm getting to see some great cooking/technique, etc.

                                                    14 Replies
                                                    1. re: soypower

                                                      Tom Colicchio had suggested in his blog that perhaps Amanda could have made tuna burgers of some sort where, by cooking them, the unappetizing gray color wouldn't have been noticed. But then again, she didn't have any rolls/buns to put them on, so she probably wouldn't have gone that way.

                                                      1. re: LindaWhit

                                                        I was surprised that Amanda didn't have anything to put the tartar on it -- a cracker, bread, some kind of sliced vegetable.

                                                        1. re: chicgail

                                                          I know, I thought that was odd as well. These were supposed to be Scooby Snacks - relatively easily eaten. Ed's corn/shrimp fritters are a perfect example. A drizzle of aioli and they're finger food. :-)

                                                          1. re: chicgail

                                                            she was plenty complemented on the dish - apart from the colour/freshness of the tartar
                                                            it also looked very pretty

                                                        2. re: soypower

                                                          <While I'm not a huge fan of Angelo's, I do notice that he doesn't say anything really bad about his fellow contestants.>

                                                          {Perhaps not, but he continues to give them bad advice (which they seem to take). He certainly encouraged Amanda to GRIND (?what was up with that?) her tuna, and to do it a day ahead of time. It's not rocket science to know that tuna is not going to be any good the next day -- certainly not to serve raw.

                                                          1. re: ChefJune

                                                            if she didn't know what to do herself, she didn't deserve to be there anyway.

                                                            1. re: LaLa

                                                              I don't blame him for giving bad info. If they are dumb enough (or insecure enough) to be asking, they deserve whatever they get.

                                                              In my book, grinding the tuna was enough to send her home for me. It should have been hand cut. I believe Tom mentioned that in Extended Judges Table.

                                                              1. re: ChefJune

                                                                I was wondering why she ground the tuna as well. Tuna is not hard to cut, or even chop finely, if that was the texture she wanted.

                                                            2. re: ChefJune

                                                              did he actually tell her to grind teh day before? i thought she just asked how she could break teh tuna down and he said to throw it through the grinder. nothing wrong with that rec.

                                                              1. re: FattyDumplin

                                                                I think she asked him if he'd mentioned you could grind tuna for tartare through a meat grinder. he said yeah, and told her how it worked.

                                                            3. re: soypower

                                                              I lived in New York and that kind of talk is not a "New York thing", it's a bitch thing. They may be abrupt, but not abusive. Except for the mean ones. Which is the same everywhere.

                                                              1. re: soypower

                                                                ed may live in new york, but he's bostonian. (being a red sox fan immediately precludes you from EVER calling yourself a new yorker)

                                                                1. re: thew

                                                                  Bollocks. Off topic, but old school Brooklynites will pick the sox over the yanks for the old time rivalry.

                                                                  1. re: Lizard

                                                                    not since the 86 series against the mets

                                                              2. MAN ANGELO IS SOOOOOOOOOO WEIRD. I AM DYING. I CANNOT BELIEVE HE HAS A RUSSIAN WIFE HE MET ON THE INTERNET LOOOOOOOOOOOOOL

                                                                6 Replies
                                                                1. re: celfie

                                                                  It's his "fiance," not his wife and how do you know they met on the Internet? I don't remember hearing that.

                                                                  I think that Angelo is a little socially retarded -- his giggles when he talks, some of the weird stuff he says -- so I'm not shocked that he's would be interacting with electronic women who live somewhere on the other side of the globe.

                                                                  1. re: chicgail

                                                                    well he said he only met her a few times
                                                                    i mean, maybe he picked her out of a catalog ;X

                                                                    1. re: chicgail

                                                                      Didn't Angela say something about having a 9 month old son in an earlier episode? So he has a 9 month old son and a Russian fiance that he saw most recently in France.

                                                                      At first I kind of thought I liked Angelo and his cooking. He does seem to give pointers to other contestants and they seem to be soon eliminated. Is he really that clever? Or is it clever editing? I think some of both maybe. We don't know how much vidie doesn't make it to the 44 minutes they use for each episode. I bet it's hundreds of hours.

                                                                      My favorite to win is Tiffany. She's fun, a good cook and doesn't say too many bad things about her fellow contestants. I wanted to like Ed, but his bashing others, especially his saying several times how he banged Angelos girlfriend while she was still seeing Angelo annoyed me just a little.

                                                                      1. re: John E.

                                                                        i don't like tiffany's food
                                                                        it is predictable
                                                                        sure it's done right but i wouldnt go out of my way
                                                                        to eat her style of cuisine

                                                                        1. re: celfie

                                                                          Is that a poem?

                                                                    2. re: celfie

                                                                      how do you know where he met her?

                                                                      people travel

                                                                      they fall in love

                                                                      that's life

                                                                    3. BTW, the contestant progress at Wikipedia shows the following:

                                                                      Ed: 2 QF / 2 EC wins
                                                                      Kelly: 2 QF / 2 EC wins
                                                                      Tiffany: 2 QF / 2 EC wins
                                                                      Angelo: 3 QF / 1 EC win
                                                                      Kevin: 1 QF / 1 EC win

                                                                      Angelo and Kelly started off strong with their wins, but have faded as the season went on, whereas Ed and Tiffany started off middling, and are coming on strong, especially Tiffany. Since Episode 6, she's been in the Top group with a "High" or "Win" for the EC challenges and she has NEVER been in the LOW group:

                                                                      Tiffany IN - HIGH - IN - IN - IN - HIGH - HIGH - WIN - HIGH - WIN - HIGH

                                                                      1. "The skewer for me was too long and it was touching the bottom of my mouth and it bothered me"

                                                                        Eric Ripert is such a dainty man!

                                                                        30 Replies
                                                                        1. re: celfie

                                                                          also returning to the is amanda hot debate...i changed my tune, definitely a hotty
                                                                          kelly is frumpy and kind of a plain jane. plus amanda likes to party

                                                                          1. re: celfie

                                                                            ...and that's important how?

                                                                            1. re: celfie

                                                                              And she knows her way around a kitchen. That's hot!

                                                                              1. re: celfie

                                                                                Kelly can cook.
                                                                                Amanda can't.

                                                                                1. re: chicgail

                                                                                  sure but ilike to cook for my woman

                                                                                  1. re: chicgail

                                                                                    Every Top Chef contestant can cook. They are all work professionally and most have extensive culinary training. The challenges they are put through are very difficult and the competition is grueling. Some handle it better than others and there are obviously different levels of skill and experience. I think as fans we tend to judge them based on what we do in our home kitchens. Cooking for hundreds of people is whole different ball game.
                                                                                    With Amanda we had a young sous chef who learned a lot and held up well through the stress. I think she has a bright future as a chef.

                                                                                    1. re: californiabeerandpizza

                                                                                      she's 27 btw , not really that young

                                                                                      1. re: celfie

                                                                                        I'm 50, 27 is young to me!

                                                                                        1. re: californiabeerandpizza

                                                                                          ha, i'm 28 and feeling it

                                                                                          1. re: californiabeerandpizza

                                                                                            Megadittos! I'm 50 too. They're all young to me at this point.

                                                                                            Kelly lost a lot of points for me in this ep. Quite the beeotchy performance.

                                                                                            1. re: Bob W

                                                                                              "megadittos"?

                                                                                              Oh, dear.

                                                                                          2. re: celfie

                                                                                            27 isn't young?

                                                                                            I guess I better not trust anyone over 30. Abbie Hoffman told me so. 'Course he was way over 30 when he died.

                                                                                          3. re: californiabeerandpizza

                                                                                            Of course they can cook. I can cook (seriously) but I can't imagine myself competing with the likes of the top chefs who compete and win these shows.

                                                                                            But there's a huge difference between being able to cook and being a master chef who can COOK. Amanda can't COOK. It's likely that someday she may. There's nothing for her to be ashamed of in her performance, but she's not "there" now.

                                                                                            1. re: chicgail

                                                                                              I'm gonna paraphrase a line from Norm MacDonald in imagining Amanda's defense:
                                                                                              "Whoa- I'm not a bad cook. I'm a GREAT cook! I'm only a bad cook compared to other professional cooks."

                                                                                              1. re: cowboyardee

                                                                                                i agree. there's no way she can be called a bad cook. she's just not good enough to be anything more than a sous chef at th emoment

                                                                                                1. re: celfie

                                                                                                  wow. being a sous chef is not a small deal. it is't like she is a dishwasher or line chef.

                                                                                                  1. re: thew

                                                                                                    wow.

                                                                                            2. re: californiabeerandpizza

                                                                                              Have to second that thought Callfornia. I am entertained by the number CH arm-chair quarterbacks who make blanket statements about the cooking skills of many of the Top Chef contestants. Seriously, they can probably run circles around most of us, but Top Chef is a cooking TV show, with certain rules and contests that some chefs can do better than others.

                                                                                              Ever seen TC Masters? Even some of the best chefs have trouble with timed contests. If TC was a bearing on a chef's ability to COOK, then Roy Yamaguchi would be washing dishes...

                                                                                              -Kevin

                                                                                          4. re: celfie

                                                                                            "also returning to the is amanda hot debate...i changed my tune, definitely a hotty
                                                                                            kelly is frumpy and kind of a plain jane. plus amanda likes to party"
                                                                                            ________________________________________________________

                                                                                            Notice the arse-shot of Amanda at Whole Foods when she was bending over to get something from the freezer. Now, was that really necessary? Parting shot from the TC directors?

                                                                                            Kelly reminds me of a grade-school teacher I had -- total disciplinarian and probably someone who cares more about penmanship than anything else.

                                                                                          5. re: celfie

                                                                                            I think Eric Ripert complaining about the skewer and also Tfiffany's meatball sandwich being messy was a European thing. I remember having some German friends over for dinner one night and I think I served grilled Italian Sausage and peppers, it was definitely something on the big side, a little messy but also something meant to be eaten with your hands. Anyway they insisted on eating it with a knife and fork because to eat the sausage with their hands is unseemly.

                                                                                            1. re: lizzy

                                                                                              Yes, and I thought Tiffany's defense of that aspect of her dish was very good -- she clearly won Tom over. I'm not sure what everyone's problem with the skewers was. You don't have to put the whole thing in your mouth -- when you eat your way down the skewer you just slide the remaining chunks closer to the end!

                                                                                              1. re: Ruth Lafler

                                                                                                Or you eat it from the side. Who sticks a long skewer down their throat to get to what's on it?

                                                                                                1. re: chicgail

                                                                                                  Several people - Ripert and someone at the ballpark - seemed to try and take the majority of the skewered chicken into their mouth by sticking the skewer down their throat. That woman said the same as Ripert - the point of the stick hit the back of her throat and scraped it. Can't quite figure this out - as you said, chicgail - eat it from the side! LOL

                                                                                                  Look at the size of this sucker - http://www.bravotv.com/foodies/recipe... - WAY too big for a single bite, but eating it from the side works.

                                                                                                  Although I do agree with Moonen - either the Romesco sauce OR the Smoked Paprika Aioli. Not both.

                                                                                                  1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                    Ripert was making too big a deal out of the skewer thing.

                                                                                                    People manage all the time with corndogs the size of Kevin's skewers.

                                                                                                    1. re: ipsedixit

                                                                                                      Ripert did sort of come across as a girlyman with the extended skewer rant. And calling Amanda's tuna "offensive" was a bit over the top too.

                                                                                                      And this from a guy who said "gy-ro" last week. This would have been the week to come across as the reguar guy, being at the ballpark and all.

                                                                                                      1. re: Bob W

                                                                                                        <calling Amanda's tuna "offensive" was a bit over the top too>

                                                                                                        I don't think so. Have you ever seen/eaten oxidized tuna? Pretty nasty stuff. And he did say that underneath the sauce at least some of it had turned black from the oxidation. I don't think I would have even smelled it, much less tasted it!!

                                                                                                        Not to mention that food poisoning from improperly prepared or stored fish is pretty painful. No one I know who has been there ever wants to repeat that experience. :(

                                                                                                        1. re: ChefJune

                                                                                                          Given how heavily the show is edited, do you really think they would have let her serve bad fish? Yes, I understand the dangers of spoiled fish and no, I don't think they would have let people eat spoiled fish.

                                                                                                          It might have looked bad, but there is zero chance it was "dangerous," to use another of M. Ripert's terms. 8<D

                                                                                                          Personally, even if she had made it that day, I think that using a food grinder on such a nice piece of fish would have been a capital offense, but it could have resulted in Angelo going home instead.

                                                                                                        2. re: Bob W

                                                                                                          but perhaps he isn't a ballpark going "regular guy" so why should he act it?

                                                                                                          1. re: thew

                                                                                                            He acted it when he said "gy-ro" the previous week. That was one of the most shocking (LOL) occurrences this season. I'm sure he knows how to pronounce that word, why play Mickey the Dunce?

                                                                                                    2. re: chicgail

                                                                                                      one of the ball players commented that he really liked the skewers, IIRC. Of course, he may have had a bigger than average mouth, given what big guys they were. :-)

                                                                                              2. I was also underwhelmed by this episode. I liked the idea of the QF, but the way it turned out, it wasn't really that clever. Basically, they were each just given an ingredient and that was the end of it. There was no attempt to work with the meaning of the idiom. For instance, I thought Tiffany could have plated her dish differently so that it actually appeared that the beans were spilling out of another dish onto the plate - ergo, "spilling the beans"! But no, it was just beans, no more.

                                                                                                And then I didn't understand how the Elimination Challenge was a team challenge - they didn't work together at all, except with the ordering part (sort of). IMO, Kevin came off as kind of a jerk, even if Angelo was a bit flaky with the whole ordering thing - at least he tried to step up, which is more than any of the others seemed to do.

                                                                                                And how is it possible that Amanda works at WATER GRILL - widely considered one of the best seafood restaurants in LA - and screwed up something as fundamental as tuna tartare?!?! And knowing that she was going to be judged by Rick Moonen, no less! That to me was unbelievably dumb. I agree with some of the others - a true top chef would have figured out a way to turn that gray tuna into a tuna fritter or something rather than just bumbling on.

                                                                                                I'm glad Ed won - his dish looked delicious, and it also seemed very appropriate for high-end ballpark fare.

                                                                                                6 Replies
                                                                                                1. re: aching

                                                                                                  "And how is it possible that Amanda works at WATER GRILL - widely considered one of the best seafood restaurants in LA - and screwed up something as fundamental as tuna tartare?!?! "
                                                                                                  ________________________________________________________

                                                                                                  Yeah, I"m puzzled by that as well aching. But I'm even more surprised she actually went ahead and tried to do tartare. It's just a bad dish for a ballpark setting -- even if properly and well-executed.

                                                                                                  Now maybe I have an excuse to drop by Water Grill and maybe ask her.

                                                                                                  1. re: ipsedixit

                                                                                                    Let me know if you do - THAT is a conversation I would like to witness! =)

                                                                                                    Amanda seems to me like the type who will blame the editing for everything. "It was a brilliant dish and everyone loved it - it was just the way they edited it..."

                                                                                                    1. re: aching

                                                                                                      You can't "edit" gray tuna ... (unless you're doing a retro Black White film noir version of Top Chef)

                                                                                                    2. re: ipsedixit

                                                                                                      I think Amanda got her current job after TC7 taping. In her bravotv exit interview she says she is jobless. That would explain her never making seafood throughout the whole season until this episode.

                                                                                                      Good luck to her. I think she has very good potential after a couple of years in a top kitchen under her belt. She is surprisingly inconsistent with her protein prep, knowledge and finishing, considering the successes of her complex sauces and flavorings. It's almost as if the bulk of her professional experience is as a saucier, and she rarely preps or finish the protein, thus the lack of experience in that area

                                                                                                      1. re: ipsedixit

                                                                                                        I suppose it's possible Amanda's never made tartare except to order, so never had the opportunity to internalize that there's a good reason not to prep a day ahead.

                                                                                                        1. re: momjamin

                                                                                                          There was probably only a small amount of people brave enough to even order tartare at a ballpark and she probably could have made them to order.

                                                                                                    3. I have just a few other observations from this episode. Although Kevin's QF dish looked fantastic, I have no idea what he was thinking because that dish could not have been frozen. Speaking of Kevin, him taking over Kenny's role as the head Angelo basher is getting old for me. He needs to just let it go and focus on himself.

                                                                                                      At this stage in the competition I have no idea why anyone is asking Angelo's advice. If you are going to ask anyone, ask Tiffany.

                                                                                                      Amanda really should have cut her tuna into manageable portions during the prep time, and prepared the dish onsite. I think it would have been easier that way for her to change her game plan if needed. I am also confused as to why she didn't serve her dish on top of something so it could be eaten with your fingers. I kind of knew Amanda was going home because I felt her mistake was a technical mistake while everyone else on the bottom suffered from a conceptual mistake. You know it's bad when Eric Ripert says he spit out your food.

                                                                                                      I thought it was funny, and more than a little telling, that after Amanda made the announcement she was the one told to PYKAG in the stew room she went to give Tiffany a hug. However, Kelly was walking towards a chair and got in the way so that turned into an awkward hug.

                                                                                                      Ed made me laugh a few times last night. First when he was wearing the dress, and second when he was talking in the confessional about how many fritters he needed to make. Ed said, "if you do the math" he needed to make 3 fritters pp for 150 guests so he would need to make 550 fritters. No, Ed, "if you do the math" you would need to make 450 fritters.

                                                                                                      22 Replies
                                                                                                      1. re: lizzy

                                                                                                        Oh, I noticed Ed's math error too! He must have kicked himself when he realized that he made 100 extra fritters (and lost a quart of bodily fluids in the process - I've never seen such a sweaty chef)!

                                                                                                        1. re: aching

                                                                                                          Hmmm, I wonder if he actually made the extra 100 fritters or if he realized his math mistake before he completed the task.

                                                                                                          1. re: aching

                                                                                                            I've never seen such a sweaty chef)!
                                                                                                            ~~~~~~~~~~~
                                                                                                            Howie. Hands down.

                                                                                                          2. re: lizzy

                                                                                                            I think Angelo was really focusing on the fact the winning dish would be on the Schwan's frozen dish offering and made the comment about Kevin's dish not being able to be frozen. The challenge was to make a tasty dish based on the phrase. Kevin did good with his dish but I agree it would not have translated well to frozen. Ed's dish looked and sounded amazing and I'm glad he won.

                                                                                                            On the Amanda/Kelly hug.....did anyone notice how Amanda kind of pushed Kelly to the side and headed towards Tiffany? Like there was no love lost.....

                                                                                                            1. re: Dee S

                                                                                                              You'll notice that when Padma asked Moonen to choose a winner, she specifically asked him to choose which dish would make the best frozen meal, not which was the best dish. I wonder if he was planning to choose Kevin's dish on the basis of overall quality and had to be reminded that an essential part of the challenge was that it was going to be used as a frozen meal.

                                                                                                              1. re: Ruth Lafler

                                                                                                                Yummm ... frozen poached eggs.

                                                                                                                1. re: ipsedixit

                                                                                                                  And frozen bacon foam!

                                                                                                                  1. re: Ruth Lafler

                                                                                                                    Where's Wylie Dufresne when you need him.

                                                                                                                    1. re: Ruth Lafler

                                                                                                                      Frozen or fresh, I'm not a fan of foam, certainly not as a deliberate and prominent component of any dish. Ick. Just ick. Spit, that's what it always reminds me of. I really wish this was not such a 'popular' or 'in' thing to do.

                                                                                                                      1. re: huiray

                                                                                                                        Ice cream and bread are foams. just sayin...

                                                                                                                        1. re: TheFoodEater

                                                                                                                          OK, but I think you know that what I am referring to are those bubbly thingies spewed onto otherwise non-spit-looking food.

                                                                                                                          (Actually, without researching it further, I think I would consider ice cream more of a coarse emulsion than a foam)

                                                                                                                          1. re: huiray

                                                                                                                            You mean like whipped cream? I HATE that - i always ask that my apple pie be served sitting in a pool of lightly sugared heavy cream. That way the crust that someone worked so hard to get right is nice and soggy, and neither a spoon nor a fork is adequate to eat it.

                                                                                                                            quote: "Actually, without researching it further, I think I would consider ice cream more of a coarse emulsion than a foam"

                                                                                                                            It's not.

                                                                                                                            1. re: cowboyardee

                                                                                                                              http://www.foodsci.uoguelph.ca/dairye...

                                                                                                                              I don't think my intended meaning of 'foam' on food is ambiguous in the current context. I somewhat think TFE's and your responses are tending towards not being useful comments and even mildly sophomoric in nature.

                                                                                                                              1. re: huiray

                                                                                                                                I know that ice cream is both. Heck - milk alone is already an emulsion. Your reply seemed to imply that ice cream was not actually a foam, which is untrue.

                                                                                                                                You're welcome to your own personal preference, and I'm sorry if I jumped down your throat for stating one. A lot of people tear into a chef for including foam on one of their dishes and seem to be completely unaware that they already eat foams on a regular basis. As such, I am protective of chefs that I feel are unfairly bashed. Sorry if I jumped the gun on defending a chef when you were only stating a personal taste.

                                                                                                                                A foam is above all a USEFUL technique. It can keep multiple sauces distinct. It avoids water-logging foods (like pie crust) whose textures are sensitive to wet sauces. It can keep a dish lighter when desirable. It can make sauced foods easier to eat and finger foods easier to sauce. And it can turn unappetizing foods (sugary egg whites, milk popsicle) into treats (meringue, ice cream). That was, sophomoric or not, the point of my last post.

                                                                                                                                1. re: cowboyardee

                                                                                                                                  No apology needed. We're good.
                                                                                                                                  Thanks for the additional discussion, that's good info. :-)

                                                                                                                                  ETA: BTW, i might mildly add that I didn't say ice cream wasn't a foam but, rather, that it seems more an emulsion than a foam. :-)

                                                                                                                                  1. re: cowboyardee

                                                                                                                                    absurd technicality. people object to foam in non-desert contexts because it looks out of place and disturbingly similar to spit.

                                                                                                                                    i personally find foam as a proxy for sauce distasteful - the texture focuses attention away from the flavour. it is novelty and not aesthetically pleasing

                                                                                                                                    1. re: celfie

                                                                                                                                      Quote: "Absurd technicality."

                                                                                                                                      I don't see why. A foam is a liquid with large amounts of air incorporated. It should be at least worth pointing out that foam-haters don't really dislike foams - they generally only dislike foams of an otherwise non-foaming sauce stabilized with lecithin. Or foams with larger air bubbles, I guess. Do you also dislike foams with perhaps more fat content or gelatin and then created with a whipped cream canister? It can be quite a different effect. Less reminiscent of 'spit,' more like a mousse (also a foam). Or is it all bad on principle?

                                                                                                                                      Quote: 'it looks out of place and disturbingly similar to spit'

                                                                                                                                      These are your biases. Fine. But again - YOUR biases. I don't make the mental connection to spit when I see a foam (why not soapy water, btw, or sea foam?) And I have no idea what 'out of place' might mean to you beyond restating that you don't like foams in your food - we knew that already.

                                                                                                                                      Quote: "the texture focuses attention away from flavor."

                                                                                                                                      How? If a foam itself is flavorless or bland, then it is simply a poorly made foam. And if it is used in lieu of a wet sauce in a dish that otherwise calls for a wet sauce, then it is a poor choice by the cook, not a poor technique in of itself. Do other textures steal attention away from flavor? Or just that of foam?

                                                                                                                                      Quote: 'it's novelty'

                                                                                                                                      In my last post, I already listed a half dozen reasons one might use a foam that have nothing whatsoever to do with novelty.

                                                                                                                                  2. re: huiray

                                                                                                                                    i'm just sayin words have meaning. there is a big difference between what you mean to say and what you actually say. It's not sophomoric to point out that you're failing to use a technical term properly, and as such, fail to say what you think you are saying. To me, "it looks like spit so eww gross." sounds a lot more sophomoric than "more things are foam than you think, including ice cream and bread."

                                                                                                                                    anyone who says they hate foam but eats bread and ice cream doesn't know the meaning of the words they are using. it's that simple.

                                                                                                                                    And, I think comments on a food forum pointing out what technical terms actually mean are much more useful than comments which distort language and misinform everyone who reads them.

                                                                                                                                    1. re: TheFoodEater

                                                                                                                                      What I said was in the context of Kevin's bacon foam. I don't think it is too much of a strain to be able to understand my comment in context. I also don't think you should paraphrase and distort my actual comment (Ick), as a colloquialism - as celfie points out - to the more colorful phrase you attribute to me.

                                                                                                                                      Oh, for the record, I RARELY eat bread and can't remember the last time I ate ice cream.

                                                                                                                                      BTW I've been a research scientist for 30+ years and believe I know how to use technical terms when called for and appropriate.

                                                                                                                                      -----------

                                                                                                                                      < "And, I think comments on a food forum pointing out what technical terms actually mean are much more useful than comments which distort language and misinform everyone who reads them." >

                                                                                                                                      I would like to know if everyone who reads "foam" as used in the original discussion indeed thinks of ice cream and bread. People - comment, please?

                                                                                                                                      1. re: huiray

                                                                                                                                        Huiray, I think that it was pretty obvious what you meant .

                                                                                                                                        1. re: huiray

                                                                                                                                          Huiray, it was incredibly obvious what you were talking about. I don't really care about all the other stuff.
                                                                                                                                          Discussion of languages is always interesting, but sometimes words can't be taken so literally (as in, pointing out ice cream and bread when you were clearly talking about something quite different). An example I'll use is "viscosity". I was commenting on the viscosity of a red wine at dinner when I first started dating my current gf and she, being a chemical engineer, thought it was ridiculous that I would describe any food thinner than molasses as "viscous." The fact that it's an accepted and standard term in the world of wine did not sway her opinion. My gf was hearing and using the term "viscosity" in the same way TheFoodEater heard and used the term "foam." Both are technically correct in their insistence, but both are unnecessarily stubborn in their insistence as well.

                                                                                                                                          1. re: gastrotect

                                                                                                                                            gastrotect & dmjordan, thanks for your comments.

                                                                                                                  2. Team Tiffany over here.
                                                                                                                    So over Angelo. He is a one trick pony and a weird one at that---praying to pix of chefs? Anthony Robbins, I'll give him, but a chef shrine? Creepy.
                                                                                                                    Amanda, finally! It's about time. That vile looking cat food she served thankfully was her demise.

                                                                                                                    1. Did anyone else find it a little weird how Angelo was talking to his girlfriend? The man was practically humping the bed!!

                                                                                                                      And yes I'm still watching but really am underwhelmed. Amanda made a comment after the quickfire that her mac and cheese was the first time she disagreed with the judges. Uhm, why would you put out food you knew was not good? Sure she showed some skills when it came to sauce as others mentioned but she simply lacked the confidence or the know how to take charge of her dishes.

                                                                                                                      I thought Angelo might actually go home. Seeing as he has a sandwich shop and made a terrible sandwich. Someone with a better memory can correct me if I'm wrong but I feel like in the past there was someone who made something that was supposed to be "their" thing, failed miserably and went home.

                                                                                                                      I am definitely rooting for Tiffany. Sure she may not have the most wow food, but I would rather have yum than wow any day!

                                                                                                                      1. I'm so glad to see Amanda go home! I was so sick of her shocked face when she was told things weren't good at JT! how many times was she in the bottom? I'll have to check Wiki in the morning.
                                                                                                                        Go Tiffany! And yeah, Ed made me laugh too. I knew his dish would win the QF over Kevin's, as soon as it came down to the two of them.

                                                                                                                        1. Ok, a confession of my complete immaturity in the form of a question: Was I the only one who giggled at the name 'Schwann's '? The way it was said sounded so close to...

                                                                                                                          7 Replies
                                                                                                                          1. re: Lizard

                                                                                                                            LOL I must be getting away from my roots, because I see Schwan's trucks all the time and have never thought that.

                                                                                                                            1. re: Bob W

                                                                                                                              ok I give up (or have an unimaginative mind). What does it make you think of?

                                                                                                                              1. re: DGresh

                                                                                                                                Well, Lizard is the one who made the association, but I suspect it reminded him/her of the Yiddish word shvontz or the German word Schwanz, and I think you have enough of an imagination to figure out what those mean. 8>D

                                                                                                                                1. re: Bob W

                                                                                                                                  That's exactly what it made me think of. And I'm still snickering.
                                                                                                                                  (It's kind of like I get when I pass by a 'Zizzi' (a UK pizza chain) here. That's the word French style.)

                                                                                                                                  1. re: Bob W

                                                                                                                                    i certainly don't want to eat a schvantz covered with foam

                                                                                                                                    1. re: Bob W

                                                                                                                                      I took German in High School but that word wasn't on our vocabulary lists :)

                                                                                                                                      1. re: DGresh

                                                                                                                                        The best words rarely are. 8>D Now, I took German in college, and at that level you will learn some better words. But the best words are never learned in the classroom.

                                                                                                                              2. havent read the thread yet, but i was so annoyed - neither top dog nor flash in the pan are food related idioms.

                                                                                                                                5 Replies
                                                                                                                                1. re: thew

                                                                                                                                  Well, people cook with pans.

                                                                                                                                  And, there are certainly enough people in the world that consider dog a delicacy.

                                                                                                                                  1. re: ipsedixit

                                                                                                                                    And there's at least one hot dog restaurant in the U.S. calling itself "Top Dog." :-)

                                                                                                                                    http://www.topdogrockport.com/

                                                                                                                                    1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                      And one more!

                                                                                                                                      http://www.topdoghotdogs.com/

                                                                                                                                    2. re: ipsedixit

                                                                                                                                      but the expression "flash in the pan" comes from old school gunnery, not cooking. different pan.

                                                                                                                                      and the expression "top dog" is about pack behavior, not sausages or cooked dog

                                                                                                                                      1. re: thew

                                                                                                                                        Literary license. :-)

                                                                                                                                  2. Well at least someone made tuna tartare.

                                                                                                                                    I thought we were going to go a whole season tartare-less ....

                                                                                                                                    1. I saw the discussion regarding the "dangerous" tuna tartare...I didn't see anyone mentioning WHY Tom said that...he said the grinder heats up the meat, which than you get into the whole safe/unsafe termperatures arena.

                                                                                                                                      Is it me, or is anyone else surprised when they realized the finale is almost here? I feel in previous seasons, there's clear front runners, and you actually can pinpoint east contestants cooking style. Other than Angelo and his penchant for asian flavors, I have no clue what the other contestants cooking styles are.

                                                                                                                                      I like Tiffany, she's my favorite. But I'm not sure if she does Tex Mex, or American comfort....or that is just what she wins on?

                                                                                                                                      I'm just kind of "eh" over this whole season.

                                                                                                                                      1. I don't know if this was covered, but I just had the TV on and this episode is being repeated right now. I was bugged a little by a comment made by Angelo. He apparently put up a shrine to his 'food gods', i.e. chefs he admired, and prayed to them. I think that's a little odd. It's not something I would do, but if it helps him, ok then.

                                                                                                                                        4 Replies
                                                                                                                                        1. re: John E.

                                                                                                                                          I was more weirded out that he said "when he was a little boy". Takes all kinds, though, right?

                                                                                                                                          1. re: John E.

                                                                                                                                            http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/7301...

                                                                                                                                            1. re: huiray

                                                                                                                                              I've never before been provided a link to the same thread that I was already reading.

                                                                                                                                              1. re: John E.

                                                                                                                                                If you were to click on the link you would be taken to a post in this thread that mentioned Angelo and his chef deities.

                                                                                                                                          2. Did anyone else think it was weird that Amanda said she's the only sous chef that made it that far? I thought both Ilan and Marcel (Season 2 finalists) were sous chefs...

                                                                                                                                            Can anyone confirm or deny?

                                                                                                                                            2 Replies
                                                                                                                                            1. re: soypower

                                                                                                                                              I thought she meant among her competitors.

                                                                                                                                              1. re: chowser

                                                                                                                                                Ohhh....I can't believe that didn't occur to me. Geez. I guess I'm not as smart as I think I am!