Pop Culture Princess

Pop Culture Princess
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Thursday, October 28, 2010

Top Chef: JD's Dessert Wars,a less than tasty meal for a TAR team and The Vampire Diaries prepare for cold blooded revenge

We're down to six chefs on Top Chef:Just Desserts and after a cookie jar pull,they were divided into two teams for their own version of a mise-en-place relay race. The challenges were to fill a dozen small tart pans with crust,make a batch of butter-cream roses,whip up a non drip froth of egg whites and the hardest of all,roll up a filled with fruit strudel.

It was pretty close but at the end,Team Diva(Zac,Yigit and Heather H)were defeated by Team Morganza(Danielle,Erik and naturally,Morgan). Since Team Diva has been carrying on with as much decorum as your average high school clique,this little let down should have woken them up about just how hot their pastry skills may not be.

Everyone staid in team mode as the big elimination challenge was revealed to be Dessert Wars-each group was given a bakery shop set and each person was responsible for three items,one of which had to be bread based.

The big prize for the winning team was 30 grand(to divide up,I assume-that wasn't made very clear),so all of the chefs were pretty jazzed for this challenge.

Team Morganza decided to call their shop "Whisk Me Away",with a home style comfort food approach to their sweets.

While Eric's chocolate chip cookie went over well,Judge Gail thought it was a bit too basic. Judge Johnny,however,pointed out that every business needs a simple sellable item and that the cookie was excellent in that regard.

Danielle had front of the house duties,which she carried off with a lackluster air. While two of her dessert offerings were decent,the coffee cream pie with hazelnut brittle was deemed too mild in flavor.

The superstar of this team and the night was Morgan,whose dishes the judges adored. From his pretzel stick with duo of mustard sauces to the fried lemon pie and a true piece de resistance,a chocolate mousse cake with a creme brulee center,the guy was on fire here.

Team Morganza won,much to the dismay of Team Diva. Morgan's personality leaves quite a bit to be desired(he's condescending and cranky,at the best of times),the man is showing all the signs of becoming a serious contender for the finale. Some people need to really get it together or they'll be tapped out of the competition before they know it.

Meanwhile,Team Diva called their place "Pastry Playland" and although spirits were high,their display case was low on goodies. Zac's initial treats such as caramel corn with bacon bits and blueberry jam doughnut did please some palates but his lemon verbana milkshake was a bust,along with the fennel seed and kalamata brioche that he made as well.

Yigit did great as front of the house man and his margarita sorbet delighted Judge Gail to no end. Unfortunately,his peanut chocolate tart had a crust so thick that Hebert Keller nearly broke his plate cutting into it.

Heather was the one who made that dough,which she owned up to at judge's table,and as usual,she took too much upon herself which showed in her own dishes. The frozen key lime bar she made bore the mark of her fingerprints on the chocolate,for one thing and since she was the one who made a lot of the other components that affected her team's treats,Heather was told to pack up her kit and go.

It was a welcome sight to see,particularly due to Heather's consistent crankiness with others. At one point during Dessert Wars,she actually got into a "Shut up-no,you shut up!' fight with Zac in the kitchen,very grade school indeed.

Next week,the remaining five have some fancy sugar work to do and things get even tenser than they already were. As much as I like this Just Desserts deal,it's hard not to be impatient for Top Chef All Stars to begin.

Doctor gal pals Nat and Kat were lucky enough to take advantage of a Fast Forward on The Amazing Race,especially since the Detour involved rappelling off of a bridge and Nat has a fear of heights. Why anyone with that particular phobia goes on this show,I'll never understand.

Turns out that the Fast Forward was a major challenge for Kat,who has been a vegetarian for 22 years and hoped this wasn't an eating assignment. Of course,it was and the two ladies had to devour the meat from a sheep's head. Again,if you have certain food preferences,be prepared to abandon them on the race.

To their credit,the ladies got through the unappealing meal and became Team Number One for their troubles. At least Nat and Kat took the whole thing in stride instead of getting over dramatic,which earns them bonus points in my book:

Sinister shenanigans are in the works on The Vampire Diaries as the Salvatore Brothers and friends plan to quit playing around and give Katherine what the vamps on True Blood tend to call the "true death". That sounds good on paper,but things aren't going to be that simple,folks.

Katherine is in desperate need of a werewolf for whatever end game she's playing(my guess is some sort of empowerment spell involving that moonstone Mason was so eager to get for her)and now that Damon has eliminated her right hand man,so to speak,she has to create another one.

Her back-up plan is to compel Matt into fighting with Tyler unto the death,which will trigger Tyler's inborn lycanthropy and bingo,brand new minion! These two schemes are bound to end badly,one way or another,with the only guarantee being that this should be one hell of an episode:


PROJECT RUNWAY: Tonight is the finale,where the Final Three have their Fashion Week showing,and despite the hype about a split decision between the judges,I'm rooting for Mondo to win. This season has been much more well paced than last time,even though it was overrun at times with personality drama but talent is what should win out in the end:

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