MasterChef: Cowboys & Fruit Tarts

The home cooks find themselves 70 miles north of the MasterChef kitchen in the land of green rolling hills and cowboys!  Dressed for the occasion are Graham, Gordon, and Christina who drives the judges up in style.  For this team challenge, they’ll be feeding and judged by cowboys.  They’re of course making steak!  The steak is to be accompanied by two sides and a sauce.  Hetal and Katrina, the winners from last week, step up as team captains.

Hetal, as the winner from last week, gets the first pick… only, there’s a twist!  She’ll be picking for Katrina’s team and vice versa.  The teams end up being Hetal, Shelly, Olivia, Christopher, and Stephen on Red vs. Katrina, Claudia, Tommy, Nick, and Derrick on Blue.  Hetal also gets the choice of her teams’ cut of meat– she picks the hanger steak and gives the NY strip to Blue.

Both teams have to make menu adjustments throughout, as Red’s grilled zucchini is deemed a bit “ladies who lunch” by Gordon and the demi-glace on Blue seems more wedding than campfire.  Here’s what they come up with:


Whether it be due to zucchini delay or Hetal’s panic, it’s a landslide victory for Blue.  The Red team’s headed into the pressure test.

Blue gets to save one member of Red from the dreaded test, and they snag Olivia up to the balcony.  The other four home cooks go from outdoor grilling to delicate baking: it’s a fruit tart challenge!  I can’t imagine how hard this would be to make.  Hetal lets her nerves get to her again, Stephen cries on the floor, but all produce fairly attractive tarts:

Top: Stephen's and Shelly's, Bottom: Christopher's and Hetal's.

Top: Stephen’s and Shelly’s, Bottom: Christopher’s and Hetal’s.

In the end, Hetal and Shelly are sent upstairs for the best two tarts.  Stephen and Christopher await their fate, only to learn that they will both be safe this week!  Thank goodness.  With so many double-elimination episodes, I knew we’d see this day!  The top 10 live to cook again.

Who’s your favorite out of the group?

Amazing Race Recap: Do You Believe in Magic?

Teams left London for Las Vegas, Nevada.  I was cheering on the Brenchels, (I want them to have a Brenchel baby too!) and was psyched to learn Rachel lived in Vegas!

bidding a fond farewell to season 24 at the Las Vegas Speedway

bidding a fond farewell to season 24 at the Las Vegas Speedway

Upon landing in the US, a car picked up the teams and sent them to a desert to dig up a box reading “Property of David Copperfield.”  The Brenchels were the only ones to break the box open and reveal the keys before arriving at the clue.  (More good news!)  The first clue asks the teams, do you believe in magic?  David Copperfield himself put them to the test in the Roadblock.

In the illusion Roadblock, one teammate is locked in a box with the keys– they had to unlock the shackles, retrieve lockpicks from the top of the box, which was raised, and set on fire.  Once they were done, the other teammate presses a series of switches that dropped the boxes into a burning piling of wood in an explosion.  David Copperfield would then act concerned, and say they should call the fire department.  The previously boxed teammate would then come out dresses as a firefighter.  Cute!

Then it was off to the neon boneyard for the next clue.  The had to grab a lightbulb from a giant question mark, then head over to The Mirage.  At The Mirage, the next challenge came in the form of hoisting a teammate to the top and having them replace and count the light bulbs in the sign’s letter “I.”

One final Roadblock had Dave, Caroline, and Brendan skydiving to the finish line while their partners waited below with the eliminated racers.  So great to see my cowboys, Youtubers, Globetrotters, and Miss Mallory again!  This was such a great season.

As the winner came into view, no one could tell it was Dave until he landed.  Poor Rachel cried as Brendan came done, third overall; no Brenchel babies until Brendan graduates.

I’ve got to say, guys, all I wanted out of this season was for Dave and Connor not to win.  I guess the fact that Dave only said achilles twice this episode lessens the blow a little bit.  I’m all for firsts, so congratulations to him for being the oldest winner of the Race, and to both for being the first parent-child team to win.  I cry every single time a team crosses the finish line and this season was no exception.  I cannot wait for another season of the Race.  The All Star season was such a treat; let’s hope for some new, memorable faces next time around!

Some of my favorite moments of the season have to be Flight Time & Big Easy riding donkeys in Italy, and the Afghanimals rolling around in those inflatable bull balls.  Please share yours in the comments!