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Top Chef: DC – Episode 6 Commentary – Did I Thank You For the Duck Nuts?


Quickfire – exotic food expert Michelle Bernstein from Miami guest judged the chefs’ attempts to cook weird proteins. The randomly select an order to select ingredients. After 10 minutes into the allotted 45 minutes to cook, Padma instructs them to take over the dish to their left. Forced somewhat of a twist, but still a cool one. The winner gets immunity, won’t have to cook in the Elimination Challenge, and will in fact dine with the judges on everyone else’s dishes.

Tamesha– Duck Tongue in Broth with Mire poix, Lime and Sriracha. Again, she is making made up named foods.
Andrea– Wild Boar and Risotto with Dried Cherries, Almond, Mushrooms, and Red Wine – Andrea is worried because she and Michelle are Miami rivals. So worried, that she lets it get into her head and probably made her cook a subpar boar.
Tiffany – Foie Gras with Caramelized Apples and Toasted Pecans, Brandy-Caramel Sauce
Moby – Ostrich Barded in Caul Fat and Basil with Mushroom Duxelle and Balsamic Glaze
Sbarro – Duck Testicles Meuniere with Beet and Licorice Puree
Spenny – Seared Crocodile with Ginger, Garlic and Chiles. Michelle likes the flavor, but the texture is not right.
Stephen – Seared Frog Leg, Frog Leg Confit, Tomato Grits and Blackened Bourbon Sauce
Kenny – Rattlesnake Francese and Rattlesnake Cake with Leeks, Bacon and Curry Sauce.
Kelly – Emu Egg Omelet with Goat Cheese and Harissa Vinaigrette. She doesn’t know what to do with the egg after Hot Amanda separated it.
Hot Amanda – Roast Llama, Sauce Saubise with Leek, Date and Bacon Compote.

Bottom Three
Stephen – Michelle calls it insipid. Ouch.
Moby – The ostrich was dry, and the rhubarb begged for sweetness.
Andrea – she didn’t cook the boar enough.

Top Three
Kelly – A perfect omelet
Tamesha – Cooked to perfection.
Hot Amanda – She did a beautiful job.
Interesting, this may be one of the only challenges so far this season where neither Kenny nor Spenny were in the top. Regardless, Kelly wins for her emu egg omelet. And I have officially joined Team Kelly. I wish harm upon Spenny. And Kenny, while possessing a great back story, is quite the egomaniac. I have a very hard time rooting for someone who refers to himself in third-person so often. Kelly reminds me of Big Bearded Kevin from last season – simple, yet delicious dishes. I like that style – and I find it to be more difficult to be impressive with less than to be flashy with more. Go Kelly.

Elimination Challenge – Ugh. Cold dishes. Judging each other. Whatever.

Team Kenny
Hot Amanda – Chicken Galantine with Mache and Plum Chutney. Tamesha finds it not salted, Spenny thinks it’s not cold enough and Andrea finds more cartilage.
Sbarro – Tuna and Veal with Romaine Leaves, Pine Nuts and Mediterranean Condiments. In a rare complement, Stephen likes how it looks. Then the acid questions came up and Tom’s barely veiled derision for this group.
Kenny – Grilled Lamb Salad and Lamp Carpaccio with Black Eyed Pea Hummus. Tiffany found it chewy and Spenny slimy. I believe nothing that comes out of Spenny’s mouth.
Moby – Sous Vide Lamb with Red Beet Puree and Tzatziki. Tamesha found it heavy and Andréa thought it needed more. Of course, more what, we will never know.
Ed – Sockeye Salmon on Pumpernickel Bread, Cucumber Vichyssoise and Cream Cheese. Spenny wanted things separate and thought the bread was a dry sponge. Shut. The F***. UP.

Sbarro is sent through to the winners, while Kenny goes to the losers, even though Andrea shows some class by sending Hot Amanda a vote. Stephen didn’t feel there was sabotage here – and I think Stephen is a liar, liar pants on fire.

Team Spenny
Tiffany – Peppercorn Crushed Ahi Tuna in Gazpacho Sauce with Cucumber and Arugula Salad. H.A. likes the flavors and Moby finds it refreshing.
Spenny – Poached Sockeye Salmon with Cilantro and Chile and Pineapple Tea. Kenny nitpicks here too, so it isn’t only Team Spenny who seems petty. H.A. notices an Asian theme to the dishes – a passive-aggressive way of pointing out Spenny’s massive influence on the weak-minded.
Andrea – Tartar Trio: Steak and Tuna with Chile Oil, with Mushroom Fennel with Roasted Beets. Kenny finds it lacking seasoning, and Ed has a problem with the components.
Stephen – Chilled Beef with Crispy Rice and Jalapeno Oil. Kenny doesn’t want to have a second bite, and Ed makes a Wendy’s joke.
Tamesha – Scallops with Pickled Rhubarb, Cilantro, Basil and Long Pepper in Rhubarb Jus. H.A. is overwhelmed by the spiciness. Tom says if you ever wondered what long pepper tastes like, now you know. Sbarro points out that one side of the scallop is raw.

While Sbarro is ready to vote for Spenny, the others take Tiffany’s rather ugly looking dish. Tamesha’s dish is panned across the board.

The Stew Room is AWK-WARD! Hot Amanda is stunned by the cartilage reveal and thinks she is doomed. Have no fear – never underestimate the sneaky powers of Spenny. Kenny has a look of barely-contained white hot rage on his face as Spenny informs him that he is going to Judge’s Table with a 50-50 shot at elimination.


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