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Top Chef: Season 3


KristiB50
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At this point I am getting much more enjoyment reading the Television Without Pity recaps than watching the show !

THIS WEEKS SMALL RECAPLET (more later in the week)

LAST'S WEEKS FULL RECAP

CJ lost my interest with his recent buddy betrayals and I'm not thinking he was much of a chef, Hung can cook and I loved the look on his face during last week's Froot Loop extravaganza. Casey and Sara, some good stuff but still BORING. Dale, OK but not superior. Brian, not. So what does that leave?

Oh yeah...........NO ONE ! :hmmm:

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Casey is gone. Not all that much of a surprise. He was consistently in the bottom at judges table and appeared to be arguing for his life almost as often as Brian.

Why is Brian there? Because they need a throw away for next week or someone that could make fill a spot if they get sick of Hung and want to send him home?

With the dishes Casey, even Sara (occasional klunker aside) are pulling out lately I am feeling a bit hustled and have to wonder if others have been holding back as well.

I never got the impression Pamda was a meanie, I think that it is just bad acting, but her tearing up when CJ left WTH?

It would have been amusing to see Tony at the breakfast challenge. The he would have probably just been rolling in from the evening.

Tony's crack about finding the Broccli Rabe in Bob Marley's closet was seriously funny, so was the lobster being the consistency of a Doll's head.

With Chef Tom being Chief stick up his butt, I think it kills Tony's creative spirit, they could have gone off on a real frenzy instead that constipated look washes over Tom's face and he bites his soul patch. I would love to burn the soul patch off with a Brulee torch, I am so sick of looking at it. And please, what is with the Beatnick look? Gaah!

edited because it needed it!

CJ is gone, not Casey.

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I wonder how was Dale (or was it brian?) able to prepare a demi-glace in such a small amount of time. Preparing a demi-glace from scratch, even assuming the stocks are ready, takes no less than 3 hours...

It had to be on the pantry shelves (or refrigerator) of the airline kitchen. There wasn't a shopping trip and like you state a good demi-glace doesn't happen in a "poof it's demi-glace!" kitchen miracle.

I knew it was CJ whenthe producers emphasized the "moment" he and Padma spent in his room. Quite a bit of flirtatious behavior, and then the near tears when he departed. Hmmmmmm. Just for show? :unsure:

"As God is my witness, I thought turkeys could fly."
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There's no way the cheftestants were woken up "by surprise" for the Quickfire Challenge. There's no way they got all that food and equipment into the apartment without waking them up, and there's NO WAY those boys just hopped right out of bed not sporting what boys usually sport in the morning.

At their age. Your likely right, at mine that may not be so true! :laugh:

Robert R

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I knew it was CJ whenthe producers emphasized the "moment" he and Padma spent in his room. Quite a bit of flirtatious behavior, and then the near tears when he departed. Hmmmmmm. Just for show? :unsure:

Anyone else think Padma was stoned to the gills in the breakfast scene?

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There's no way the cheftestants were woken up "by surprise" for the Quickfire Challenge. There's no way they got all that food and equipment into the apartment without waking them up, and there's NO WAY those boys just hopped right out of bed not sporting what boys usually sport in the morning.

Yeah, and everyone was WAY too awake at 6am. I don't care how used to waking up early you are, nothing's making me jump like that unless Padma's in bed with me.

And I guarantee I am NOT getting OUT of bed... :wink:

Still, I thought it was an interesting challenge, and I wish they'd put a little more emphasis on showing the challenges airlines have in making food that's remotely good (apparently an issue, as it's rare that anything I'm served at 30,000 feet is even barely edible - another reason I bring my own food).

I thought it was interesting that Colicchio felt the need to dress all hip, with the backwards cap. He looked more like a hipster doofus, trying to impress his dad, Bourdain.

And Tony was completely wasted on this episode, though the doll's head comment was hilarious.

I was sorry to see CJ go, though his food definitely merited it. I also think Brian is coasting along and will be thrown to the wolves next week.

And God, Padma is still so damn beautiful it hurts to look at her. :wub:

Cheers! :cool:

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Anyone else think Padma was stoned to the gills in the breakfast scene?

Keckler, the reviewer @ TWOP:

For the Quickfire, a decidedly stoned Padma arrives at Top Chef Towers, wakes everyone up, and orders them all to make breakfast for her munchies. (Note that she whips the covers off Casey, but doesn't dare do that to any of the guys for fear of being exposed to morning wood. Although with Dale, she would have been safe. Probably.)
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Anyone else think Padma was stoned to the gills in the breakfast scene?

Keckler, the reviewer @ TWOP:

For the Quickfire, a decidedly stoned Padma arrives at Top Chef Towers, wakes everyone up, and orders them all to make breakfast for her munchies. (Note that she whips the covers off Casey, but doesn't dare do that to any of the guys for fear of being exposed to morning wood. Although with Dale, she would have been safe. Probably.)

LMAO!!

Just as I thought!

And I'm pretty sure she had some wake and bake that morning.

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Anyone else think Padma was stoned to the gills in the breakfast scene?

Me, out loud, to the tv: "Today's Quickfire challenge is...prepare a STONER breakfast!" :laugh:

"I'm not eating it...my tongue is just looking at it!" --My then-3.5 year-old niece, who was NOT eating a piece of gum

"Wow--this is a fancy restaurant! They keep bringing us more water and we didn't even ask for it!" --My 5.75 year-old niece, about Bread Bar

"He's jumped the flounder, as you might say."

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This was the most animated I recall Padma ever being. Must have had something special on her wheaties.

Tom seems to be getting less and less camera time and slipping into some dark lord persona.

I too think Brian will be getting the boot next week.

Despite the fact that I love to gripe about the show I also never fail to watch it.

The best part of this week's show was Bourdain's blog IMHO.

I wonder if Bourdain will replace Colicchio next season?

Jon

--formerly known as 6ppc--

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This was the most animated I recall Padma ever being. Must have had something special on her wheaties.

Tom seems to be getting less and less camera time and slipping into some dark lord persona.

I too think Brian will be getting the boot next week.

Despite the fact that I love to gripe about the show I also never fail to watch it.

The best part of this week's show was Bourdain's blog IMHO.

I wonder if Bourdain will replace Colicchio next season?

And where did Gail Simmons go? Back to F&W? Home with the baby? (OK, she looked kind of preggers last season, but I really shouldn't speculate so loudly!)

I was really sorry to CJ go, but there was no other call to make. Padma looked like she was going to cry - the only time I've ever seen her so upset to see a cheftestant go.

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I was really sorry to CJ go, but there was no other call to make.  Padma looked like she was going to cry - the only time I've ever seen her so upset to see a cheftestant go.

Maybe CJ was the one supplying her WEED! :biggrin:

Or something else! Just kidding here - when she split up with Rushdie a few months ago, there were rumors bouncing around that she was getting VERY chummy with some of the chefs, but I think the implication was it was with one of the judges/chefs - not cheftestants. I don't think there was anything to it - but

wasn't CJ sooooo-ooo-oooo charming and come hithering when Padma went in to wake him up? (!!) :laugh:

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Or something else!  Just kidding here - when she split up with Rushdie a few months ago, there were rumors bouncing around that she was getting VERY chummy with some of the chefs, but I think the implication was it was with one of the judges/chefs - not cheftestants.  I don't think there was anything to it - but

wasn't CJ sooooo-ooo-oooo charming and come hithering when Padma went in to wake him up? (!!) :laugh:

I noticed that too, though I was thinking the same thing as he was. If Padma were to throw open my bedroom door and almost jump on my bed, well, let's just say I'd be making her lunch (or even dinner). And maybe the next day's breakfast. :wink:

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Children!!!

Am I gonna have to turn the HOSE on Y'all?!!!!!

I just tune in and watch people cook. What kinda COOKIN' Y'all been watching? :blink:

rachel

tottering away to find the brain bleach

and read some more Bourdain, who is a Gentleman in all aspects

Edited by racheld (log)
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I actually thought this week's challenge made some sense and was an appropriate challenge for a cooking show. PLUS...it was entertaining.

Now morning breath and visions of Padma dreams aside, the episode got off to a laughable (literally), start with Hung serving Padma some steak and eggs and a smoothie doused in Grand Marnier.

Yes, it was a laughable start because of Hung's boyish giggles-the same effusive gigglies he broke out with when Boulud approached his table during the 'gourmet burger' judging. I thought Hung was going to pee his pants on that one he was so excited. But this week we were entertained twice by Hung's googly giggles-when the Goddess Padma gave Hung praises for his steak and eggs and especially, especially that ultra-slurpy, super-boozy smoothie. God forbid if Padma had held his hand.

And I got even more laughs watching Hung's reaction to that gaggle of flight attendants walking across the floor of the hangar-I'm not sure the guy had ever seen a flight attendant in heels before. Pretty funny.

Now I would like to encourage Hung to get back to his more creative cooking side. Remember that unique dish of Geoduck and Black Chicken? Whatever happened to that sort of creativity? Last week it was Smoked Salmon on Cucumber Rounds, this week Steak and Eggs for Padma's breakfast, and then a pedestrian entree of Sea Bass, Baby Squash, Onions and an Herbed Tomato Sauce. Not exciting enough to win Top Chef in my book.

Creating entrees to be served on an airplane would be a tough challenge for any chef. You have to realize that you are offering two or three entree choices to a wide variety of differing customer tastes. While a steaming bowl of Thai Red Curry Lobster in Broth with Glass Noodles might sell well in your local Thai place, it might not go over well onboard a Continental flight from Newark to Houston. So first, you have to create entree choices with a fairly broad appeal-a fish, a chicken, a steak.

Secondly, you have to choose products that will withstand the unique rigors of the 'airline experience.' For example, this evening at 630pm, a British Airways flight will be departing Seattle for an overnight flight to London. Let's say steak is one of the first class entrees. That little filet probably was seared off in a flight kitchen around 3pm. Then it was cooled down, packed in an aluminum tray, loaded on a food cart, put on a catering truck, driven out to the airplane, and then loaded on the airplane. The passengers board about 545pm and off the plane goes at 630pm. The flight attendants start the service with cocktails and nibbles about 730pm, then after appetizers, salad, soup and breads, your little steak is served on a 'dinner plate' the size of a coffee cup saucer. The little steak that started off in the pan about 3pm is finally eaten about 8pm or so. Now trying, trying as hard as you can, to time the cooking of that steak so it is served medium-rare, and trusting the flight attendants will help you out, is an immense challenge for a cook.

Colicchio sure didn't score any points in my book with that try to be hip, turned around beret and leather bomber jacket get-up. Tom, trust me, I'm in your age group and I carry your body shape. We DON'T look good trying to force the hipster thing.

But I agreed with Tom on one of two points he made about the challenge of cooking airline food. First, Tom said that the chefs who chose meat over fish were going into the challenge with a distinct advantage. I agree. Meat, if it is put into the right dish and prepared properly, will hold up much better than fish. I think the most successful fish dishes served on airplanes are-poached, chilled seafood in salads and appetizers, smoked seafood in appetizers, caviar.

But I disagreed with Tom when he said that if you start with good ingredients 'you should' get a good dish. No Tom, not always true when great ingredients are applied to the un-friendly environment of the airplane galley. Choose the wrong meat dish-like grilled, rare, slices of flank steak, and you might end up with shards of shoe leather. But if the flight kitchen takes the time to slow roast some lamb and serve the tender little nuggets of meat in a fragrant stew with Middle Eastern spices-on certain flight routes that dish might be quite popular. I think in the case of airline food it's a combination of good ingredients and proper cooking technique.

Well, I guess I better get into my regular critique of the food and cooking-this time I'll take on the good and the bad.

Casey-Veal Medallions with Crimini and Apple Brandy Sauce, Brussels Sprouts and Cauliflower Gratin.

Casey's dish was the winning choice of the judges, and I guess I would agree. I've said before that it is hard for us to really critique the dishes since we don't taste them. I'm not sure veal was a choice I would have made. Casey apparently didn't overcook the veal which is what I think gave her the win. I think the judges really liked the cauliflower gratin, which was a great choice. It's the sort of dish that is somewhat forgiving if it sits in the galley oven a tad long-but not long enough that the cheese or sauce separates. Gratin type dishes do well going through the cook, chill, re-heat stages of airline meal service. Broccolini is another story that I'll get to.

But did you catch the comments of the Continental Chef-"we don't normally serve Brussels Sprouts or Cauliflower onboard." Duh, do ya think? And guess why Casey? Cuz it makes ya fart! That's right, Mr. gas bags on your flight tonight. Eat a few of those little cabbage rolls at 40,000 feet and you're a fart machine sitting in 3A.

But overally I think Casey showed creativity and the judges were pleased with her technique and presentation.

CJ-Halibut, Farro, Mint Oil and Broccolinni.

I think CJ had a death wish this week. Maybe he was spent after being woken up by Padma and he just couldn't muster the strength to properly cook a green vegetable on a Boeing 777. Poor Lad.

I bet if CJ was serving us seared halibut at home it would be delicious-moist and just done in the inside, accented by the fresh, spiciness of mint oil and a decent side dish of tender broccolini.

Not so on tonight's flight CJ. I know how horrified Bourdain and Colicchio were when that petri dish of blackened hairs of broccolini were put down on the tray table. About twenty years ago I was on a United flight from Portland to Chicago. The friendly skies made the mistake of attempting to serve seared swordfish with asparagus and hollandaise sauce. Talk about the stink of overdone fish in the first class cabin of a DC-10. And of course, the hollandaise didn't make it-it separated into little pools of oil and butterfat. And there there was the asparagus. CJ's broccolini was that asparagus reincarnated twenty years later-almost black, stringy, tough and disgusting. Just don't serve that crap dude. Leave it in the galley. Take some salad off a coach plate, cut one of the tomatoes off the coach salad into a fancy little swan and stick it on your first class plate. The passengers won't ever know. Just DON'T serve them that broccolini.

I guess CJ just wanted to find an excuse to "have a beer with Bourdain and talk smack about my broccolini."

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"Colicchio sure didn't score any points in my book with that try to be hip, turned around beret and leather bomber jacket get-up. Tom, trust me, I'm in your age group and I carry your body shape. We DON'T look good trying to force the hipster thing. "

In his defense, he was going with the Samuel L Jackson theme of the episode.

Edited by Doodad (log)
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In his defense, he was going with the Samuel L Jackson theme of the episode.

Maybe so, but I still think Tom looked a bit out of sync with his get-up. It wasn't really a show about good guys and bad guys, even cool hip guys on airplanes, so much as it was supposed to be about new entrees for first class passengers on Continental. What Tom wears or Padma's jewelry isn't the main focal point of the show, nor should it be. It should always be the contestants and their dishes. CJ's broccolini cast such a huge dark shadow over the first class cabin I think Tom could have worn a toga and laurel wreath and it wouldn't have made a louder statement than that awful green mess CJ put out.

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Maybe so, but I still think Tom looked a bit out of sync with his get-up.  It wasn't really a show about good guys and bad guys, even cool hip guys on airplanes, so much as it was supposed to be about new entrees for first class passengers on Continental.  What Tom wears or Padma's jewelry isn't the main focal point of the show, nor should it be.

I also though Tom came off as trying a little too hard to be cool. In fact my first response was too laugh when he first appeared in the get up. Trying to impress a certain guest judge perhaps?

Edited by Fpoint (log)

"You're drunk."

"Just bring out the cakes."

"Cakes and fine wine."

"If you don't leave we'll call the police."

"Balls! We want the finest wines available to humanity, and we want them here and we want them now!"

--Withnail & I--

http://meandmyfork.blogspot.com/

http://booksaboutfood.blogspot.com/

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I just have to say how NICE the last few weeks have been without Gail.....

Speaking of her....unless I'm completely losing my mind here.....during the promos they have been showing all week for tonight's episode I could have SWORN there was a brief clip of her saying yada-yada-yada "was UNexcusable". I don't really know if that is proper grammar, but for some reason it stuck out as sounding wrong to me (flashback to at least one other instance of Ms. Editor flubbing a sentence).

Then TONIGHT (and I'll go rewatch to be positive)....during the same sentence she said INexcusable.

It is completely possible that I'm losing it, but can anyone else verify a difference between the promo and the actual show?

Jerry

Kansas City, Mo.

Unsaved Loved Ones

My eG Food Blog- 2011

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