Thursday, April 03, 2008

Top Chef Chicago, episode 4

I'm feverishly trying to get spring cleaning and decorating done before I head to Dallas, so here are a few random thoughts and reactions to the most recent episode:

Quick Fire Challenge:

- Ryan says he spent a short time working with Daniel Boloud. "It wasn't my style," he said, with a sneer. Now wait a minute ... if memory serves me right, didn't I read on Rick Bayless' blog that Ryan worked for HIM? I checked, and sure enough, Bayless wrote that he didn't care for Ryan:
... I remembered him and the swagger with which he walked through the kitchen, and that doesn’t go over very well in our kitchen.
Then Ryan goes on to gripe about the kiwi guy with the curly hair (I'll get the names straight one of these days) ... and then talk about "Dumb and Dumber" being one of his favorite movies. I think Ryan has surpassed Andrew as the jerk who's gotta go.

- The Quickfire dishes were impressive. I wish they had shown more than seven of them.

Movie Theme Elimination Challenge

- I liked the theme of the challenge. Like the zoo challenge, it required some creativity but it gave the chefs enough leeway to make good food.

- Did you notice that some of the chef's coats had pockets for pens in the sleeves? Cool. I want a jacket like that ... but I'd rather have a pocket for my iPod.

- I thought Ryan and the kiwi guy would get skewered for their take on "A Christmas Story." Their explanation: in the movie, there's a scene when they went to a Chinese restaurant and ate duck (which is, in fact, a great scene). So they served quail. That's quite a departure from duck, isn't it? But they seemed to get a pass for that interpretation.

- There were raves about the "Christmas Story" carrot puree. I can't imagine ever getting excited about carrot puree so I'm intrigued. I'd like to try it, but the recipes on that site are written for chefs, not home cooks. The recipe reads, "Roast carrots in saute pan with ginger, onion and corn oil." No information on temperature or technique. I either roast food in a roasting pan in the oven, or saute in a saute pan on the stove. How do you roast carrots in a saute pan? I'm puzzled.

- No crazy closeups of Padma eating. She looked gorgeous in that blue dress.

- This week's turd award goes to Andrew for his appetizing comment, "I have no doubt that the people eating the food will culinarily crap in their pants." Appetizing.

- The lesbian couple has bad taste in earrings. Especially Zoi. I can't watch her talk without staring at the great big earrings.

- I wanted Spike to be eliminated. Manuel was likable. He had a very classy departure.

- Fewer obvious, obnoxious product placements this week, thank goodness.

- I think I spied Ming Tsai next week! Hooray, I like him.


Deborah said...

I'm totally with you on the Christmas story duck thing. Although the dish did look delicious - it just didn't work with the movie like it was supposed to.

chou said...

My husband and I spent the evening post-watching discussing whether the four chefs eliminated so far were really as laid-back/ laissez faire as presented. My thought: no way! But hey, no one ever said reality TV had anything to do with real. I liked Manuel, too.

Emiline said...

OMG that is funny about the earring thing. You would HATE my earrings, they're huge. The bigger the better is what I say. ;)
When a person walks up to you and the first thing they notice about you is your earrings, that's a bad sign.

Manuel was likeable. I wish the other dude got kicked off.

The turd thing continues on. Sue FN Musings) pointed out the swiss chard packet looked like you know what.

Tracy said...

Deborah, OK I'm glad I'm not nuts on the duck vs quail thing. It made no sense to me. I was yelling at the TV, "Pick a different movie, you idiots!" OK, maybe not yelling out loud but thinking it like I was yelling it.

Chou, you're right, it's hard to know about the personalities of the chefs so far. There are just too many to keep track of. Which is why I'd be up for 2-hour Top Chefs at the beginning of the season. Or show it over two nights, like Dancing With the Stars. I want MORE Top Chef!

Emiline, it's not just that Zoi's earrings are big. Big earrings can be cool. Zoi's earrings, to my taste, are big and ugly. The other gal in the couple (I forget her name) wears smaller earrings but hers are ugly too. And I thought the Swiss Chard thing looked like duck poo. I forgot to mention it. Sue beat me to it? Darn, I'll have to check it out.

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