Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

Sign in to follow this  
bpearis

Iron Chef America (Part 1)

Recommended Posts

Sorry if this has been asked before, but does anyone know if a chef has ever reproduced their Iron Chef menu in a restaurant as a special chefs tasting  menu type thing? I can see it being a special for a couple months.

As noted in the Vancouver Sun article, Rob Feenie served a tweaked version of his Iron Chef menu to guests invited for Sunday night's screening at his restaurant. Not sure if he has any plans to continue running it as a special.


Joie Alvaro Kent

"I like rice. Rice is great if you're hungry and want 2,000 of something." ~ Mitch Hedberg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sorry if this has been asked before, but does anyone know if a chef has ever reproduced their Iron Chef menu in a restaurant as a special chefs tasting  menu type thing? I can see it being a special for a couple months.

As noted in the Vancouver Sun article, Rob Feenie served a tweaked version of his Iron Chef menu to guests invited for Sunday night's screening at his restaurant. Not sure if he has any plans to continue running it as a special.

Chef Feenie also speaks about adding the Iron Chef items, including the Crab Panna Cotta in this radio interview (courtesy of CKNW). Fast forward to about the 35:15 mark. Some really interesting behind the scenes stuff ... and some dirt on Morimoto leaving in a huff! :shock:

Thanks to CanadianBakin' for finding this!

A.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Michael Noble ran some of his potato battle dishes as a special tasting menu for a while a Diva.

Feenie served versions of at least four of the five dishes on Sunday, I'm not entirely sure if the veal one was excluded.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
What we need to remember about the panna cotta was that it was not what Rob wanted exactly. It failed because of an equipment problem. He quickly adapted without missing a beat. Fast on his feet !

It has been said by some that know Rob's cuisine from frequent visits to his restaurant that none of these dishes were big surprises, but adaptations of what he does on a regular basis. I see absolutely no problem with that. These are all winner items. Was I surprised that he did a ravioli?  No. He does an excellent job of it. I could only imagine the pressure of creating five dishes under those conditions. Stick with what you know and adapt. How many time has Morimoto done a rice dish ? He has competed 76 times. You are bound to see items come back in one form or another. Chefs have a quiver full of arrows that hit the bullseye every time. Why take a chance on national TV ? Go with the winner !

I am really looking forward to my next Rob Feenie meal !

Adapting quickly under fire is probably important for any chef, but essential for this kind of exhibition.

As for the pressure of creating five dishes under those conditions, it's been published in the NY Times and repeated here several times that it's no secret that the parties are told in advance of the two possible "surprise" ingredients. Therefore, they're expected to arrive prepared to cook ten dishes. If you've noticed over the episodes to date, many of the chefs arrive with some pretty esoteric gadgets that would only be useful under limited circumstances. From what I understand they have ample time to rehearse both potential menus.


Robert Buxbaum

WorldTable

Recent WorldTable posts include: comments about reporting on Michelin stars in The NY Times, the NJ proposal to ban foie gras, Michael Ruhlman's comments in blogs about the NJ proposal and Bill Buford's New Yorker article on the Food Network.

My mailbox is full. You may contact me via worldtable.com.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
As for the pressure of creating five dishes under those conditions, it's been published in the NY Times and repeated here several times that it's no secret that the parties are told in advance of the two possible "surprise" ingredients. Therefore, they're expected to arrive prepared to cook ten dishes. If you've noticed over the episodes to date, many of the chefs arrive with some pretty esoteric gadgets that would only be useful under limited circumstances. From what I understand they have ample time to rehearse both potential menus.

That's what I understood as well, but if you listen to the interview Chef Feenie did on CKNW (Vancouver) he says there is actually a list about a page long of potential ingredients. The advance notice they're given, according to Feenie, "isn't much help at all."

Personally, I think he's embelleshing a bit. Ming Tsai showing up with an air compressor for his Peking Duck is enough proof for me that they know more than Chef Feenie is letting on.

A.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
As for the pressure of creating five dishes under those conditions, it's been published in the NY Times and repeated here several times that it's no secret that the parties are told in advance of the two possible "surprise" ingredients. Therefore, they're expected to arrive prepared to cook ten dishes. If you've noticed over the episodes to date, many of the chefs arrive with some pretty esoteric gadgets that would only be useful under limited circumstances. From what I understand they have ample time to rehearse both potential menus.

That's what I understood as well, but if you listen to the interview Chef Feenie did on CKNW (Vancouver) he says there is actually a list about a page long of potential ingredients. The advance notice they're given, according to Feenie, "isn't much help at all."

Personally, I think he's embelleshing a bit. Ming Tsai showing up with an air compressor for his Peking Duck is enough proof for me that they know more than Chef Feenie is letting on.

A.

I have heard from an insider that the list was 5 ingredients, so it would appear that somewhere in between lies the truth. That being said, it certainly does not detract from the fantastic cooking and creations that you see on ICA. What spoke volumes about the preparation and advance notice was the lack of banter and discussion amongst the sous chef's and chefs. Having heard the interview, there was some foreknowledge but not lots. It would be interesting to see a show without any preparation, warts and all ! Lots of yelling, swearing, threatening of lives, kicking garbage cans. But I doubt that would happen. Not in TV land!


Neil Wyles

Hamilton Street Grill

www.hamiltonstreetgrill.com

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
As for the pressure of creating five dishes under those conditions, it's been published in the NY Times and repeated here several times that it's no secret that the parties are told in advance of the two possible "surprise" ingredients. Therefore, they're expected to arrive prepared to cook ten dishes. If you've noticed over the episodes to date, many of the chefs arrive with some pretty esoteric gadgets that would only be useful under limited circumstances. From what I understand they have ample time to rehearse both potential menus.

That's what I understood as well, but if you listen to the interview Chef Feenie did on CKNW (Vancouver) he says there is actually a list about a page long of potential ingredients. The advance notice they're given, according to Feenie, "isn't much help at all."

Personally, I think he's embelleshing a bit. Ming Tsai showing up with an air compressor for his Peking Duck is enough proof for me that they know more than Chef Feenie is letting on.

A.

I have heard from an insider that the list was 5 ingredients, so it would appear that somewhere in between lies the truth. That being said, it certainly does not detract from the fantastic cooking and creations that you see on ICA. What spoke volumes about the preparation and advance notice was the lack of banter and discussion amongst the sous chef's and chefs. Having heard the interview, there was some foreknowledge but not lots. It would be interesting to see a show without any preparation, warts and all ! Lots of yelling, swearing, threatening of lives, kicking garbage cans. But I doubt that would happen. Not in TV land!

From the previews, that looks like how Bobby will be acting on the next episode.


"Instead of orange juice, I'm going to use the juice from the inside of the orange."- The Brilliant Sandra Lee

http://www.matthewnehrlingmba.com

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I have heard from an insider that the list was 5 ingredients, so it would appear that somewhere in between lies the truth. That being said, it certainly does not detract from the fantastic cooking and creations that you see on ICA. What spoke volumes about the preparation and advance notice was the lack of banter and discussion amongst the sous chef's and chefs. Having heard the interview, there was some foreknowledge but not lots. It would be interesting to see a show without any preparation, warts and all ! Lots of yelling, swearing, threatening of lives, kicking garbage cans. But I doubt that would happen. Not in TV land!

Even if the list is longer, the chef could easily break it into different categories and how to react to them with his Sous chefs before the actual batter. If the ingredient ends up being a starchy root vegetable, do xyz, if it is poultry, then do such and such instead, then the chef can always fine tune for the exact ingredient later on.

Almost any of the crab dishes could've played off just as well had the ingredeint been lobster, prawns, crawfish, etc.


He don't mix meat and dairy,

He don't eat humble pie,

So sing a miserere

And hang the bastard high!

- Richard Wilbur and John LaTouche from Candide

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
It would be interesting to see a show without any preparation, warts and all ! Lots of yelling, swearing, threatening of lives, kicking garbage cans. But I doubt that would happen. Not in TV land!

Anyone remember FoodTV's "Ready, Set, Cook!"? If you truly believed the premise, the ingredients were really a surprise to the chefs. In fact, at one point the host (Suzy Biggers) would ask a trivia question of the chefs (and their sous-helpers from the audience) and the winner would get their choice of an extra known ingredient or a mystery ingredient (usually hidden in a cookie jar or something similar). Whatever wasn't chosen, the other team had to use in their dish. And this was after the chefs had started cooking their dish so they had to think quickly how to incorporate the new ingredient. Not quite as involved as "IC" but at 30 minutes, it was still a stress-inducing show.

And on "Cooking Live!" with Sara Moulton, every once in a while she would do a surprise night where the staff would go out shopping and put the bags of food on the counter. Sara opened the bags in the first five minutes of the show and spontaneously came up with a menu based upon the groceries and spent the rest of the hour cooking the dishes. I miss that show!

Too bad "IC" doesn't really surprise their chefs. I agree that would be something to see.


 

“Peter: Oh my god, Brian, there's a message in my Alphabits. It says, 'Oooooo.'

Brian: Peter, those are Cheerios.”

– From Fox TV’s “Family Guy”

 

Tim Oliver

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Rob was on "Studio 4" yesterday, & I believe he said that they were given a list of possible surprise ingredients a day or two ahead of time.

An hour and a half before they start the show, they're told what it actually will be.

He also said they'll be serving the five dishes he prepared, in in his restaurant.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't know why nobody has realised yet but pineapple will not gel with gelatin unless an enzyme is deactiviated by heat.


PS: I am a guy.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Feenie was wrong about the equipment being the cause of failure for his pineapple jelly. Pineapple contains an enzyme that inhibits gelatine from gelling. You need to cook the pineapple first to deactivate the enzyme which I'm pretty sure he didn't do.


PS: I am a guy.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Rob was on "Studio 4" yesterday, & I believe he said that they were given a list of possible surprise ingredients a day or two ahead of time.

An hour and a half before they start the show, they're told what it actually will be.

It's possible they've been modifying the rules as they go. There's no question but that some of the contestants were told it would be a choice between two ingredients and that it was so reported in the NY Times. Are they not also given a list of staple ingredients that will be on hand? It's my understanding that there's lots of food ready for their use in addition to the main theme ingredient. Nothing so far has convinced me that this show is in the nature of a sporting event rather than an entertainment show. I'm not saying it's run by a script, but it's edited for entertainment value and my guess is that every decision is based on how it will attract viewers. Pro wrestling is my idea of the model.


Robert Buxbaum

WorldTable

Recent WorldTable posts include: comments about reporting on Michelin stars in The NY Times, the NJ proposal to ban foie gras, Michael Ruhlman's comments in blogs about the NJ proposal and Bill Buford's New Yorker article on the Food Network.

My mailbox is full. You may contact me via worldtable.com.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Finally saw the "Battle Crab" with Feenie vs Morimoto. Having never seen the show before, i have decided that Alton and Kevin are about as good at commentating as Ryan Walter is at commentating hockey games.

"Well, that's definitely below freezing then!" --- nothing like overstating the obvious.

That being said...I was glad that Rob was able to keep his cool...he looked relaxed in front of the cameras....whereas his sous'....looked like they were trying so hard just to focus on the task at hand. Anyway....Congrats!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I don't know why nobody has realised yet but pineapple will not gel with gelatin unless an enzyme is deactiviated by heat.

I’d like to think heating the pineapple and/or comments about it were edited out. I can’t imagine that crew not knowing it. Even the Jello box warns of fruits to avoid. And Alton explains in detail on the gelatin show.

But then it didn’t set…

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm pretty sure it was the fridge. It looked like the panna cotta didn't set at first either. It looked like they had plans of unmolding it onto the jelly, and then they transferred it into a serving bowl instead. It looked like soup. IMHO.

 

 

 

 

[Moderator note: This topic continues here, Iron Chef America (Part 2)]


Edited by Mjx Note added. (log)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...