by Monica Y. Hong
Last week I was too consumed with turkey day prep and baking pies to fit in the Top Chef Texas chili cook-off recap, but I’ve extracted all the necessary ingredients for you to move right into this week’s rundown. Consider these morsels from the Thanksgiving Day leftovers:
- *Nyesha Arrington, executive chef of Wilshire restaurant in Los Angeles, added some more Korean flavor to the mix when she revealed that her maternal grandmother is from the motherland. Uh suh oh ship shi yo Chef Arrington!
- *Beverly needs sleep and misses her husband. Also, she finally cooked something other than Korean-inspired food.
- *Padma looks damn hot in some tight high-waisted denim. She even gets on a horse. Yee haw!
- *Filipino American Chef Paul Qui is a silent force to be reckoned with and the only chef brave enough to cook with the ghost chili pepper. He’s on fire!
- *Last but not least, Ed can open a bottle of wine by slamming it against a wall. The cork flies off and the wine is flowing. Cheers!
So with the holidays approaching and Christmas cookies and gift-giving on my mind, I thought this week’s recap should be a list à la Santa’s naughty and nice list.
Chef Ed has been happily married for one year to a “wonderful Indiana girl” and we get to see cute couple pics of them on TV! Aww.
Ed pulls his back during the quickfire challenge where the contestants have to cook on the side of a dirt road in the blazing Texas sun using ingredients from a survival kit. This slows Ed down but doesn’t stop him from being resourceful with the packaged and canned goods. He makes a Thai peanut soup with salmon and tofu with a nori-wrapped crab and artichoke cake topped with fried hominy. It ends up being one of the judges’ favorite dishes, but he loses out to some Vienna sausages. Poo.
During the elimination challenge, the chefs have to cook a progressive dinner party for three Dallas neighbors with each course cooked at a different residence. Beverly is part of the entrée group and isn’t very good at sharing kitchen space. The other chefs think she’s being selfish and Chef Nyesha even claims sabotage. Naughty Bev.
When the entrées are served, Beverly presents pan-seared diver scallops with creamy polenta in an XO sauce and crispy garlic. One of the Dallas socialites likes her dish and would ask her back to cater another party. Wonderful.
Nyesha serves a roasted filet of beef with a vegetable mélange and a red wine sauce. The Dallas folk finds her dish unappetizing and her red wine sauce blood-like. However, her dish survives the scrutiny of the judges.
In the dessert house, Ed shows off his classy style once again with his cardamom-scented panna cotta, cantaloupe consommé and raspberries stuffed with basil pudding. A creamy white island floating in a pale orange broth with strands of basil lingering about and topped with two filled raspberries.
When Padma comes out in her cleavage-friendly dress and announces the top four dishes, none of our KA chefs are included, but Chef Paul comes out victorious at judges’ table with his winning appetizer dish of fried brussels sprouts with grilled prosciutto. Paul from Texas wins in Texas!
Next week perhaps one of our KA hopefuls will rise to the top of the pack, but other cheftestants will not stop bitching about Beverly. She is seen in next week’s episode breaking down shrimp too slowly for their taste. Naughty chefs! Ho ho ho!