Hell’s Kitchen Recap: 16 Chefs Compete

“As chefs, we’re constantly required to use our minds 24/7,”

Uhh, Chef Ramsay, I’m pretty sure you mean as human beings… Regardless of this sentence bothering me grammatically and logistically, this is how Gordon introduces the memory/creativity challenge.  Our chefs are greeted by 58 silver domes, where 24 pairs of ingidients wait to be discovered in a giant game of memory.  The chefs work in pairs to match ingredients for four proteins: chiekn, ahi tuna, swordfish, and pork chop.  A match means they must use the ingredient, so it could be a double-edged sword.  Both teams run into this– the women end up with both brown rice and bastami rice, and the men end up with three kinds of potatoes!  Once the ingredients are assigned to proteins, the same pairs cook together.  Red and Blue go head to head on…

  • chicken, and both teams win the point
  • pork chop, and the men take the point
  • tuna, and the ladies take the point
  • swordfish where the women use both rices, but the men make a bigger mistake and lose!

The men have put hollandaise on the swordfish which Ramsay treats as a sin.  Although I can totally understand how this does not work, I am over-the-moon about hollandaise and would probably happily eat it on anything.

As punishment, the men have to harvest honey and pull honey taffy.

As a reward, the women enjoy a day at Laguna Beach!

The next day, Chef Ramsay wakes the teams up to a surprise wedding taking place in Hell’s Kitchen.  The elimination challenge has the chefs cooking wedding brunch including Belgian waffles, lobster scrambled eggs, and what the announcer calls a croque monsieur, but is actually a croque madame– the egg makes it a madame!

IMG_0447Remember Julia, the Waffle House contestant from seasons past?  This challenge reminded me of that breakfast service that let her shine.  Ramsay sent her to culinary school which, after winning, is the best of results from a show like this.

This service did not go as well as Julia’s season’s breakfast service.  Though the fruit salad appetizer goes out easily, exploding and undercooked eggs hinder progress.  Eventually, the teams find a rhythm and it’s a race to finish their respective sides of the dining room.  Both get down to the very last ticket, but the ladies clench the victory!  This means the men must my nominations for elimination.  Ralph, red-faced and Boston-accented to a fault, makes an argument for Demarco and Gabriel.

At elimination, Chef Ramsay adds Richard to the mix, calling him out on his performance.  Even though Richard and Gabriel lost the challenge for the Blue Team, as iterated by Chef Ramsay, there’s no doubt that Demarco is the obvious choice to go.  He’s been nominated for elimination every single week, and Ramsay stayed true to his word: this was Demarco’s last chance.

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