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Top Chef: DC – Episode 6 Commentary – “Dude, Where’s My Pea Puree?”


Elimination Challenge – Cook a power lunch at the Palm, using proteins supplied by the restaurant.

Porterhouse Steak
Kelly – Porterhouse with Crispy Potato, Arugula Salad, Roasted Shallot Demi-Glace
Hot Amanda – New York Steak and Filet Mignon, Red Wine with Pommes Parisienne and Arugula.

Amanda cut her meat off the bone, officially making it a different kind of steak. This annoyed Kelly, but not the judges. Savannah liked Hot Amanda’s flavor, and Palm Executive VP Bruce Bozzi liked her meat draping (perhaps the worst imaginable interior decorating plan).

Savannah thinks Kelly’s is as big as “half a cow.” Of course, that’s the Palm-sized portion. Luke thinks it is more Texas than DC. I am going to Texas in three weeks, and I really hope Luke is right! Gail goes into Kelly’s fatal flaw – the over-salting. Earlier, Kelly is shown throwing salt on the steak and refusing to share her salt with Hot Amanda or anyone else. As Amanda said, “that’s what you get.”

Swordfish
Tiffany – Swordfish with Olive-Raisin Tapenade, Broccolini and Bacon

Andrea – Pan-Seared Swordfish with “Risotto-Style” Israeli Couscous, Asparagus and Buerre Blanc. Andrea has lots of trouble since she doesn’t like swordfish, not a good sign.

Kelly O finds Andrea’s to be really sweet and full of butter. Warner doesn’t care for the vanilla. Strange – vanilla fish sounds like such a good idea. Art is afraid he may have just gained back all the weight he lost. Tiffany’s doesn’t get much notice other than Podesta thinking it was overcooked.

Salmon
Stephen – Pan-Seared Salmon with Warm Vegetable Salad and Worcestershire Vinaigrette.
Moby – Applewood Smoked Salmon with Black Forbidden Rice and STOLEN English Pea Puree.

Art loved the sweetness of the pea compared to the fish. Mika finds the portion to be perfect – kudos to Moby who cut his salmon down to smaller portions earlier. Art finds Stephen’s to be very busy and messy. Warner thinks the presentation is heavy. Um, ok.

Lobster
Spenny – Poached Lobster with Lobster Froth and Jicama, Arugula and Asian Pear Salad
Ed – Poached Lobster Ballotine, Eggplant Caviar, and English Pea-Asparagus Fricassee.

Spenny’s is chewy according to Gail. Joe is not a foam guy – don’t introduce him to Marcel. Ed’s lobster gets praise from both tables, with Savannah really liking the smoky flavor, while ironically Gail thinks what few peas he used were not even necessary.

Lamb Chops
Kenny – Peppered Lamb, Fig-Pistachio Bread Pudding with Vanilla-SOMETHING ILLEGIBLE THAT I WROTE IN MY FOURTH GRADER SCRAWL Demi-Glace
Sbarro – Double-Cut Lamb Chops with Olive and Goat Cheese Rissole, Mache and Tomato Concasse.

Rizzo finds Kenny’s to be sweet, while Luke likes the meat, but not the sides. “It gets an Oscar for Best Actor, but not the supporting cast.”
Gail thinks Sbarro’s lamb is overcooked. Warner also finds it tough, while Kelly starts making up words.


Winners
Surprisingly, Moby, Ed and Tiffany get called in for the win. Tiffany is literally in tears, and Ed tries to kill Moby with his thoughts and stare. Tiffany gets praise for the juiciness of her entrée. Ed gets credit for the difficulty of what he did, while Moby’s gets huge praise from Art, who decides the winner. Clearly, we saw where this was going. Moby wins – Tiffany and Ed stew, and the rest of the chefs seem stunned by his win, since they all seem to think he is a THIEF!!!!!

Losers
Sbarro, Andrea and Kelly go to the chopping block – and immediately anyone who has watched this season knows who is going home.

Sbarro – His red chili flakes caused the massive spiciness problem that ruined it for Gail. Tom says that by first cooking the lamb sous vide and then searing it led to overcooking. It is already medium rare before the searing. Art didn’t like the way the lamb was cleaned.

Andrea – Art says her dislike of swordfish showed in the dish and the goopy couscous. Tom felt the vanilla was too much sweet for the dish and criticized how the fish sat under the heat lamp for too long.

Kelly – Tom asks her if she knew why she was there. She did – salt. Not this Salt – that would be much cooler. Art thinks that it leads to questions about her palate. Kelly literally dissolves into tears in the Stew Room as the stress and exhaustion seems to be getting to her. She may be in trouble.

So – Andrea goes home. What is the lesson learned this week – don’t pair fish with fruit or vanilla. Not that I was planning on doing so anytime soon. Andrea thinks she’ll be ok, but had trouble because she is not used to cooking for four judges. What show did she think she was going on? This ain’t the friggin Bachelorette!

Quickfire hits
• It’s been driving me crazy – and of course, I figure it out the week she gets eliminated – but Andrea looks exactly like Carmela Soprano.
• Massive Show Foreshadowing – the first scene has Kelly and Andrea lamenting the elimination of their whole room so far. Well, at least Kelly now has a single.
• Anyone notice Spenny throwing an elbow at Kenny at the start of the Quickfire. That’s two-minutes in the penalty box.
• I know Spenny is…well, Spenny, but boy, those were some amazing knife skills during the Quickfire.
• Looking at Stephen’s shirt at Whole Foods, I can only think of one thing – He’s a Star Bellied Sneetch. He has stars upon thars.
• Andrea says there is no crying in the kitchen. Or baseball.
• Spenny thinks that the lobsters were as big as his hands. I would like to correct him – not your hands, Spenny, your ego. Much better analogy.
• Tom finds Tiffany in the corner. I would like to remind everyone that nobody puts Tiffany in the corner.
• New movie starring Ed and Ashton Kutcher – “Dude, Where’s My Pea Puree?”
• If Luke’s reference to loving the Obama burger was confusing to you – it’s a reference to Spike’s awesome burger joint “Good Stuff.” Or as it’s known here – the Place I Am Going To Lunch on Tuesday Next Week.
• Extra Scene – Stephen holds a “seminar” about being in the bottom. Funniest. Stephen. Moment. Ever.

Next week – Ambassadors. Moby does a face plant. Hot Amanda needs beef. Let’s just leave it there

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