Ash – Duh! Plus the only dish he made was runny.
BryanBot – What! Bad execution. Dude actually struggles a bit on Quickfires.
Laurine – Boring dish
Hawk – A bite transported Michelle. Not sure where, but hopefully not Five.
Eli – Kudos for the butter pesto
Robin – Very nice contrast and a great salad.
Robin wins and everyone rolls their eyes. Eli belittles her win by calling it sympathy.
Elimination – Use Penn and Teller as inspiration to do magic on food, or take a traditional dish and deconstruct it. Yeah, I know. Weak. Basically, you take apart the components of a meal and allow the diner to eat them in order and thus reconstruct the dish on their forks. Chefs served in pairs, but were not working as teams. Robin served solo, having won the Quickfire and Immunity. British crank Toby Young returns to join Tom, Padma, Michelle, and Penn and Teller this week.
Hawk. Caesar Salad – Chicken Wing, Parmesan Jelly and Brioche. Hawk hides the dressing in a little puff, which comes out when you break it. It’s magic, get it? They all like it, although Penn thinks that if he made Hawk’s little creation it would explode and kill everyone.
MM. Eggs Florentine – Braised Kale Roll, Egg Emulsion, Crispy Phyllo. Toby did not care for it, and Tom thought things were lacking.
BryanBot. Reuben – Tuna, Warm Mayo, Thousand Island Flavors, Rye and Gruyere Cheese. BryanBot is worried giant Penn will crush him for serving such a small dish. He need not worry, Tom thinks it tastes like a Reuben, and Michelle raves as well. Penn said it didn’t taste like corned beef, and well it shouldn’t, since it was tuna.
Laurine. Fish & Chips – Halibut, Zucchini Relish, Tomato Confit, and Parsley Chips. Laurine burns most of her chips and it hurts her dish.
Ash. Shepherd’s Pie – Lamb Chops, Leeks, Glazed Carrots, Pea Puree and Madeira Jus. That’s right, he made Shepherd’s Pie without mashed potatoes. That’s like a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, but with sour cream instead of peanut butter. Wrong and gross. And Pea Puree might as well be Pee Puree. It was universally hated. Toby is offended as an Englishman by the lack of potatoes. Tom says, “Ash’s major issue is with the cooking.” That’s bad.
Jennifer. Meat Lasagna – Steak, Mascarpone Béchamel, Tomato Sauce, and Parmesan Crisp. She struggled with this having no experience deconstructing, and in fact, kept avoiding Tom during his rounds. Good job, Jenn – everyone loved it. Michelle was impressed by how it was truly deconstructed. Padma digs the savory flavor.
Kingpin. Seafood Paella – Lemon and Herb Oil, Chayote and Peas. He serves paella at his restaurant. Remind me to order the veal. Oh, and he didn’t understand the challenge. Bodes badly. His paella lacked the bottom of the pan crispy crunch. Boo! Michelle rips it apart for being overcooked and lacking crispness.
Eli. Sweet and Sour Pork – Pork Rillettes, Broccoli Puree, Sweet and Sour Sauce. Here’s where we get the “bull’s testicles” comment from Toby. Padma says her awesome line, “I’ve had bull’s testicles before.” Penn – “I’ll bet.” Padma – “…and these are a little big.” HA!
Ashley. Pot Roast – Seared Strip Loin, Potato Puree, Crispy Shallots, and Carrot Foam. Michelle says she kicked ass on the meat. Tom says she nailed it.
Kevin. Chicken Mole – Chicken Croquette, Mexican Coffee Fig Jam (Which should be the name of my new band), Pumpkin Seed Romesco. Kevin worried that last week’s was too close to this. No need to fret, my bearded friend! Even if it is
“thirteen shades of brown.” Penn doesn’t want any other mole again – has he even tried this guy? Michelle can see how hard he worked.
Robin. Clam Chowder – Fennel Flan with Potato Crusted Clams and Crushed Bacon. Toby calls this “Viscerally repulsive.” Yikes! Padma found it to be congealed and clearly not tasty. Good thing for the immunity!
Hawk – Tom liked his use of chemicals and dishes like this makes him excited about food. Wow.
Ashley – Michelle fell in love with the dish.
Kevin – Tom found the sauce to be perfect and well plated.
Jennifer – Toby says it was straightforward and simple, and Tom was surprised how good it was, based on her avoidance of him earlier.
We’re not used to a winner’s circle without BryanBot – but this one goes to Kevin, who wins a prize (Sweet!), the same Calphalon Unison pots I just bought.
Ash – Toby criticizes him for messing with British comfort food. Tom says the chops cooked inconsistently. Ash begs for his reality show life.
Laurine – Padma says the fish was overcooked, and Tom says she was tentative and it showed in the quality of her food. Michelle tells her that it was too deconstructed; you couldn’t put it back together again.
Kingpin – Toby wonders how he can make rice dry and soggy at the same time. Padma thinks he didn’t do enough to it, and Tom found it to be overcooked.
Presumably Robin would have been there too without the immunity. As it turns out, I expected Ash to go, but Kingpin goes instead. Tom called Ash’s dish a “poor plate of food.” and Toby said it was the one he would least want to eat again. It seemed as if he was a goner, but Kingpin may have been booted for pissing off the guest judge the most and for having a terrible track record so far.