Thursday, May 13, 2010
TC Masters serve up some strange surf and turf,Movie Night on Idol and TAR's winners' circle has a square-off
The Quickfire Challenge for Top Chef Masters this week was to create a dish based on a character from The Simpsons. Judging the meals were three members of the show's behind the scenes team;producer Matt Selman,creator Matt Groening and voice over actor Hank Azaria.
The goofiest looking dish came from Susur Lee,who has no familiarity with the show and decided to make a portrait of Marge Simpson with food.
Her hair was purple potatoes and her face was a pork chop coated in a mustard sauce with glazed grapes forming her always on necklace(the pretzels as ears was the weirdest bit,to me). Apparently the dish tasted good but not enough to win here.
Rick Moonen won this round,with his Homer inspired shrimp sloppy "D'oh!" sandwich with truffle chips and a glass of beer. As Matt Groening and Hank Azaria pointed out,it is the kind of food that Homer would gobble up and enjoy but get annoyed if someone told him what was in it afterward. Rick received five grand for his charity Three Square and first choice of proteins in the Elimination challenge.
The challenge was to cook a surf and turf plate using exotic proteins such as geoduck(a clam with an extremely long neck),sea cucumber,duck tongues and kangaroo. Rick chose black chicken and monkfish liver,turning that into a poached chicken mousse and roulade with the liver being a touchon served with buttered leeks.
Susur Lee went with the same meats,making a poached monkfish liver with black chicken veloute. This gave the panel of diners,headed up by Andrew Zimerin,the host of Bizarre Foods,a compare and contrast with the flavors. It was pretty close there in the scoring but Susur wound up taking the win in the end,mainly due to the full robustness of his plate over the savory subtlety of Rick's.
Languishing on the bottom was Jonathan Waxman,who had the last pick of the proteins and had duck tongues and giant squid to work with. He had no enthusiasm for this challenge and even tho the fried duck tongues were delicious,the rest of the plate was a mess. Frankly,it looked like a heap of leftovers that someone dumped in the trash after cleaning out their fridge. As one of the judges pointed out,this was just Jonathan on a bad day,so better luck next time.
Packing her knives and heading for home was Jody Adams,for her spiced roast goat that came out way too raw. Her geoduck and chickpea chowder was tasty and much praise was given to her homemade harissa but that goat did her in here,big time.
Next week,the chefs go tailgating,which should be fun for some more than others. I'm not a sports gal but hey,go team!
Congratulations are in order for Dan and Jordan,this season's winners of The Amazing Racedespite the fact that the brothers chose the last leg to pull some sneaky tactics. The line cutting at the airport ticket counter was bad enough(Sorry,guys but when someone has been waiting for several hours already,dropping your backpack on the floor space ahead of them is poor manners)but getting the stewardess to move them up to First Class during the flight was downright devious.
Yes,it was barely within the limits of the rules(teams have to fly coach or at least buy coach tickets)but this was not a case of the airline having to move them up to make room for others,it was a less than original stunt to get off the plane before anyone else. Oh,well,the Cowboys did get a little payback with Cord's humorous attempts to confuse Dan during the Star Wars themed VR challenge.
What really left a bitter taste in my mouth was Brandy's behavior at the Final Pit Stop towards Caite,who came in third with Brent. Caite was about to offer up an apology to Carol and Brandy(who were still peeved about that U Turn)and Brandy cut her off,refusing any gestures of goodwill and calling Caite stupid to boot.
Brandy,you know Caite actually had a point when she said "Maybe you should've treated people a bit nicer."-Quit acting like you're some intellectual superior being already-hello,you're on a fricking reality show,not an university think tank,sweetie!
If you were really as smart as you claim to be,you would have taken a moment to reconsider going off on Caite as your last moment of fame on this show. Caite may be a tad dippy and self centered(she could've taken a second to thank Brent there)but whining about a game strategy that you didn't think was "logical" because it resulted in your being eliminated makes you appear childish and petty. Jet and Cord at least took their loss like gentlemen and focused on the positive aspects of their experience,taking the high road which you don't have to be "smart" to do. It was badly done,Brandy,badly done indeed!:
Movie Night on American Idol was a strange affair,to say the least. First off,Jamie Fox was beyond obnoxious with his "Contestant" and "Artist" T-shirt gimmick(how about giving some helpful advice instead,rather than your self serving conception of a mentor performance there,Jamie,seriously?)and the song choices were odd as a cod.
Crystal,I totally dig you but the theme song from Caddyshack? I also love Lee but his version of "Kiss from A Rose" was bad enough to qualify as a violation of the Geneva convention(Big Mike has the right range for that song,but he did a nice job with the Michael Jackson tune from Free Willy,in my opinion). Their duet was lovely to listen to,so instead of choosing an individual performance as the best of the night,the honors go to their joint rendition of "Falling Slowly". It was the sweetest moment of harmony on stage that night:
The Sanjaya award this week goes again to Casey,for his clueless take on "Mrs. Robinson." While Lee's horrible version of Seal was painful to hear,it was merely a bad choice of song. Casey turned this classic bittersweet tune about suburban regret and a middle aged matron's malaise into a cutesy countrified number,using a Tiny Tim guitar to play it no less.
Also,Big Mike clearly outshone Casey in their duet together(why they picked a song that wasn't written as duet to begin with is beyond me)and I'm truly sorry to see Casey stay on for the Final Three instead of Michael. Good luck to you and yours,Big Mike-your charm and talent will take you far. As for Casey,remember this wise old Judge Judy saying-"Beauty fades,but dumb is forever.":
ENOUGH WITH THE KARA THE COUGAR ROUTINE ALREADY!
THE LEMONHEADS HIT THE RIGHT SOUR NOTE HERE
LEGEND OF THE SEEKER: The two part second season finale begins this weekend and should be a hell of a send-off for the series or,if the campaigns to save the show are successful,a new beginning for a well deserved third go-round. Either way,this should be interesting:
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