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Just Desserts 7: Dessert Wars!

I guess TC:JD has really lost its Hound audience - no posts on last night's episode yet! I was irritated by last week's episode but this far into the season I can't give it up. I enjoyed this episode much more than the previous one, especially the Quickfire Challenge, where we finally got to see some technique (and I learned that I should never, ever try to make strudel at home!). Team Diva was clearly riding for a fall, and it was no surprise that Heather was sent home - although I think Danielle is by far the weaker chef. I think Morgan is going to take it all - his desserts just seem a cut above everyone else's, both in concept and in execution.

Anyone else out there still watching? =)

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  1. Yes, but I missed the first half of it.

    Morgan is extremely annoying. I think it's between Morgan and Idgit or whatever his name is.

    1. Barely. Just when you think it can't get more boring, it does. I flipped back and forth between this and a couple of other stations. Heather H couldn't have come off as more unlikeable in this episode. I don't think it occurred to Team Diva that it would be better for them to be split up since there would be a chance one of them would be sent home if they lost (I don't think it occurred to them that they could lose). I agree that Danielle is the weakest link and I don't think I can put up with another week of her odd voices and faces. I like Yigit, even if he's a member of Team Diva, he doesn't seem as Diva-esque, though I like Eric best. There's a chance Morgan could take it and I'd hate to see that happen. I have to say, though, that I'm impressed at the number of desserts they can make w/out a recipe, in the portions they're given, from one to hundreds. It's not just a matter of multiplying/dividing a recipe to make enough. In that vein, I don't understand why Eric didn't ask his teammates when he drew a blank on the banana cake leavening.

      9 Replies
      1. re: chowser

        What is it about Morgan that you all find annoying?

        1. re: huiray

          His comments like saying his mannequin was going to be one sexy bitch, his response after elbowing Heather comparing it to going up against Shaq and you'll get hurt. There were quite a few that made me think, What??? There was a whole series where they showed a bunch of them, a few episodes back. And, there was the way he was acting in last night's episode when things didn't go his way.

          1. re: chowser

            Hmm. Seems like a lot of the stuff many alpha-male hets would do or say. <Shrug> Can't say I'm bothered/surprised much by his comments or behavior. (At the same time, he seems to me to not pick on the gays, FWIW, from what the editors show us.) From what I remember, he seems to display restrained satisfaction and frequent relative humility at his successes. His apparent skill seems clear. YMMV.

            Team Diva, OTOH, makes my hackles rise. Glad it is no more.

            1. re: huiray

              Alpha male hets. Yeah, they bother me. Guys who aren't secure enough in their masculinity that they have to beat their chests and feel good about knocking into someone else and causing injuries. And, he was a whiner in the last episode.

              1. re: chowser

                aching, lol streudel!
                (I'm still watching, on DVR. Don't do sweets often, so I'm learning something. Incredible that they are doing all this without recipes.)

                Co-sign everything chowser said above. **Except real alphas don't throw elbows -- that's pure beta pack fighter.

                Morgan was waaay more sympathetic this episode, even with his teammate who likes him calling him a dick. Go figure. He obvi has skill, but I sure hope he doesn't take the prize.

                I don't love where Heather went, but I can see how frustration messes her up. She has remarkable skills - I totally feel bad for her getting cut. I thought she went out with grace "woulda coulda shoulda", yup.

                1. re: chowser

                  Amen! It does seem like those hets are the biggest whiners on earth when things aren't going their way. And heaven forbid they get sick! Bring me my mommy! I just think he's obnoxious. Love the divas.

                  1. re: Parrotgal

                    So far, you seem to be in the minority. The divas are annoying. Morgan can be annoying as well, but he was a good loser in the quickfire and a gracious winner in the elimination challenge, unlike Heather before and after her loss.

                    1. re: John E.

                      We also see him apologizing to Eric at the end of the day for his grumpiness that day. (He may have done so to others too, but we don't see that?) It takes a big man to do that.

                      1. re: huiray

                        Morgan does not remind me of any alpha males I know, and I work in an industry with many of them. He has poor impulse control and is borderline violent in both thought and action. And, it does not take a big man to apologize. It takes a thoughtful human being, and certainly Morgan does have this side of his personality (it just is not all that special). He should let this side of his personality take over his other far more unpleasent side.

        2. Yes, still watching but am really looking forward to Top Chef All Stars.

          Agree that Danielle is the weakest, but glad that Heather got sent home. I had issues with her from the second episode, and am surprised that some people actually think she's likable. Loved what Iuzzini said in his blog about Heather and karma. I actually like Danielle -- she's very entertaining to watch, but think that she should be the next one to be sent home.

          I think it will come down to Morgan and Yigit and Zac (if there's a third finalist). I think Yigit is more sophisticated with his flavors but Morgan does more crowd pleasers. Zac is good (having eaten his desserts before), but doesn't have the wide range of skills as the other two.

          And, yes, I will never attempt strudel at home.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Miss Needle

            Regarding that studel; last night I was watching a "Challenge" episode; it had four families competing on making a personal-familly-style Thanksgiving dinner. One family was Serbian and the mom-chef pulled out a studel dough BY HERSELF as far as I could tell with so much finesse I was blown away. But anyway, the thing I noticed reminded me of what I thought when I watched this Top Chef episode; after pulling out the dough, team diva just dumped the filling at one end and rolled it up. My thought was, this can't be the best way to do it; wouldn't you want the filling in between each layer? So this home cook from Serbia did just that; she had the spiced mixture and just sort of scattered it around very sparsely over the entire dough, then rolled it up. Any studel experts out there to comment?

          2. Still watching but a bit under the weather and couldn't post last nite. Glad Heather went home although I warmed up to her a bit with the post-chop interview. I think she's had a tough life and she's taken on the role of "kitchen shrew" to compensate. I'm sure she'll mellow out with time. I
            As for the "dessert wars," I think the concept was a little sketchy so it wasn't quite fair for the judges to be so harsh about ambience and the selections. Yigits dish looked nasty--like a puddle of motor oil, but that could also be the poor quality of my TV picture. Morgan's seemed the most appealing but not quite fitting to the concept, more of a fine dining dessert. I still love this show and love how the relative limitation of desserts allow for creativity using ingredients I might actually have at my disposal. (Regular TC is getting so meat-focused I think it's out of range for many budgets/health-focused diets.) In addition, Gail and Johnny aren't so campy/bizarre that they distract from the proceedings, unlike Padma and some of the characters they drag out for regular TC.
            I love TC:JD! More Sylvia!

            5 Replies
            1. re: newhavener07

              I agree that it was Heather's turn to go home. Danielle may not be as accomplished as Heather, but her desserts this time were better (at least the ginger ale was). I think Morgan's dish was fitting since the point of the dessert wars concept was dessert, not just stuff found in an average bakery.

              I think regular TC might be too fish centric, but not too meat centric. That's what the majority of people eat at restaurants. As for campy characters, I've never seen anyone on any TC as campy as Sylvia the wedding cake baker.

              1. re: John E.

                Sylvia's not campy, she's a goddess!

              2. re: newhavener07

                I hear what you're saying. What I like about TC:JD is that it's....simpler (?) to follow - not a huge menu to remember for each cheftestant. Or maybe I'm such a Dora Dessert that I like it better! But I'm enjoying the format of it. I also respect that they can pull this all up on the fly with no recipes - that's impressive to me.

                1. re: CurlieGlamourGirlie

                  So true. I'm totally neurotic about following a recipe to the letter when I'm baking. And I have nightmares about mixing up baking powder and baking soda! The thought of improvising a recipe for dozens of people on the fly without confusing Dawn Hand Renewal for egg whites gives me the shakes. And on regular TC they're always pulling out scallops or foie gras, which even in my much more carnivorous days I was unlikely to have on my shopping list. Almost everything for the TC:JD recipes I have in my pantry right now.

                2. re: newhavener07

                  Per my cable guide, there will be more Sylvia in the episode after next!

                3. Still watching! Very good episode. No point in trying to convince people; either they like it or don't. It has it's problems but is very interesting to us and we hope it will be around for seasons to come!