home Archive Top Chef: DC, Ep. 3 – An Insult To Italians, and No, Not Jersey Shore

Top Chef: DC, Ep. 3 – An Insult To Italians, and No, Not Jersey Shore

Angelo – Sweet Potato Pie, Curry Spices, Crumble Crust.  I think it was not the spirit of the challenge, but making a savory pie was certainly not against the rules.  So it was a clever move for him. 

Tracey – Blueberry Almond Crunch Pie with Light Cream and Almond Brittle.  Elvis notices the gush of liquid that comes out and asks her if she added anything to thicken it.  Clearly not. 

Tiffany – Peach Cobbler with Cornmeal Crust, Buttermilk-lemon Crème Anglaise.  It looks really good and really, really dark due to her use of marmalade.

Lynne – Mango Pie with Basil and Vanilla Crust.  Also looks good.  However, it led to this inane exchange between Gail and Lynne – “Have you ever made a crust with basil?” “No, I have never made a crust with basil.”  Why repeat exactly what she said?

Ed – Banana crème Pie with Salted Peanuts and Celery Spuma.  Yuck.  After Ed credits his grandma for the pie, Gail wonders if it compares to his grandma’s celery spuma.  I can honestly say that I have never looked at a pie before and
said, “You know what this needs?  Liquid celery.”

Moby – White Chocolate, Tapioca and Chevre Pie with Almond Crust and Raspberry Puree.  Elvis asks if there is egg in there, which is correct.  He then correctly points out that it makes it more of a quiche than a pie.

The others – Nothing.  Sorry, hope your pie was good.

The bad – Moby for bad texture, and presumably for using chevre in a pie; Tracey for a thick crust, burnt bottom and uncooked middle; and Ed for too many extra things going on.  And liquid celery.

The good – Kelly for a beautiful piece of pie with no need for bells and whistles (which I would imagine would taste pretty bad); Stephen(!) for a surprisingly good flavor combination; and the win for Kenny for his simple, but good flavors.  So Kenny wins his first challenge, breaking the glass ceiling set by Angelo.

Elimination Challenge – Cook a picnic using a grill for Capitol Hill interns, making one main dish and two sides.  Moby has never taken advantage of an intern before.  I usually just make them make a forest-killing amount of copies.  The guest judge is none other than the Obi-Wan Kenobi of Top Chef: Masters, and grilling expert, Jonathan Waxman.

Arnold – Sesame Lamb Meatball with Tabouli Salad and Gazpacho.  Arnold comes up with a good dish, despite not having a clue how to set up his grill, and complaining how it will clog his pores.  Arnold’s shtick is getting tired really
quickly.  However, Obi-Wan likes the meatball and Tom thinks it was seasoned well.  Gail thinks the salad holds up well in the heat. 

Tamesha – Marinated Skirt Steak with Caramel Soy Glaze and Fennel Citrus Salad.  Obi-Wan finds it overcooked and chewy.

Angelo – Vietnamese-Style Lettuce Wrap with Smoked Egg Salad.  Obi-Wan thinks it looks like a magazine cover.  Personally, I think that it was a poor idea, even if made well, because it is not a picnic food item to me.  Or maybe I just want Angelo to fail.  Kenny says it well; Angelo keeps making Asian food, and forcing it into challenges where it may not work.  Granted, one-note cooking worked for Ilan in Season 2, but it is risky.