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Okay, I'll do it - Next Iron Chef, Episode 2 (SPOILER)

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An example of how even the "mighty" can stumble. Ming Tsai was being a bit over-confident, and then overdid his dish and ended up in the bottom 2.

I have to say that I was surprised that Mary Dumont squeaked by, considering the toughness of her meat. Flavor must have been her savior.

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  1. thank you for doing this! I wondered if they put Ming in the bottom to create drama- never intending to send him home, but wanting it to look like he isn't walking away with the competition. Thoughts? I have to say I am liking this more than I thought I would- less personality drama than Top chef.

    1 Reply
    1. re: karenfinan

      I do think there was a bit of "drama" involved as well. I have been watching Ming for years and am really surprised they wouldn't just have him be an IC. He has the chops, he has the recognition and the personality.

    2. I think Ming got a raw deal.

      He shouldn't have been second to last.

      The episode was about innovation. He definitely innovated, albeit a bit overboard. Plus, no one commented that his dish actually tasted bad, and Simon really enjoyed the beef.

      That said, I think Ming was his own worst enemy. He's just too good, and oozing with technique and talent (dare I say, "innovation"). He just has to harness it and use it appropriately and the gig is his.

      It's like a pinch of salt and pepper can really liven up a dish. A handful of each makes it unpalatable.

      (Chef Estes rubs me the wrong way for some reason. Maybe it's those goldfish eyes, or something. Dunno ..)

      1 Reply
      1. re: ipsedixit

        i'm with you on Estes. for me, i think it's that huge chip on her shoulder and those ridiculous pigtails. for some reason she reminds me of a petulant child who's on the verge of breaking into a temper tantrum if she doesn't get her way.

      2. The "reinventing an American classic" assignment was in Forgione's wheelhouse, so it's no surprise he won. Tsai might have gotten a raw deal but it was a bit show-offish to present such a complicated plate of food, and I can see why the judges were annoyed.

        3 Replies
        1. re: NYCkaren

          Agree. He comes across as a bit smug and arrogant.

          1. re: mucho gordo

            Smug is exactlyhow he comes off on that show.

            1. re: C. Hamster

              That's how he always is.
              His on camera style is fussy ... like Julia Child fussy.

              It seemed clear to me that's why his show got dropped by Food Network those many years ago, and picked up by PBS.

        2. I'm questioning how the turkey dish that was up for win was innovative. On TV it looked like a pretty standard Thanksgiving platter, albeit with cherry sauce instead of cranberry.

          It must have tasted wonderful. But innovative?

          2 Replies
          1. re: dach

            I thought the same thing and the plating wasn't appealing either. He really just took an open faced sandwich and smeared it across the plate in different components. I don't think it compared to the chicken pot pie at all, in terms of creativity.

            1. re: chowser

              The "bread" looked like those cheap vanilla wafer cookies with the cream filling.

          2. When Ming Tsai was describing his dish, it sounded like he was never going to end with his description. I thought it was good when he admitted that as he described his dish, he knew he'd done too much, and agreed w/ the judges. I don't know if he was overconfident, as much as didn't think and just threw in everything he thought would be good, separately. It didn't seem like he'd planned out the whole dish, just each component. I'm so glad he stayed.

            I don't understand how short ribs were updated pot roast for Mary Dumont--braised meat is braised meat? They never showed how she opened her pressure cooker.

            Oh, and the meatloaf psuedo-sous vide? The best part of the meatloaf is the crustiness you get from baking it. If he was concerned about it cooking it time, make little ones or flatten it out and then roll after cooking--ooh, with mashed potatoes inside. Maybe large meatballs w/ mashed potatoes inside.

            1 Reply
            1. re: chowser

              They did show how the Texas guy (turkey dinner) opened it for her.