top chef canada week 7

Back after a break to deal with some family business.  And just my luck, Michael Smith is the guest judge for the Quickfire. Remember his downtown Halifax restaurant Maple?
The secret ingredient is All Bran cereal–and they have to create an inspired dish with it. I suspect product placement. Can there BE more boxes of Kellogg’s All Bran?
Todd made moose poutine last week (sorry I missed that) and once more he pull out a NL ingredient–salt cod.
All Bran pureed!  All Bran gnocchi!  All Bran fishcakes! All Bran crepes! All Bran crusts! All Bran, all the time! The rest of this recap will be No Bran, free of All Bran (all bran, get it?)
Bottom: Patrick/Francois/Robert
Top: Daryl/Todd :)/Andrea 🙂 (I am rooting for Andrea because she looks my dog walker, who I would adopt and keep forever if she would let me–got a puppy who needs exercise? Let me know and I’ll hook you up)
Does Michael Smith ever speak naturally, or does he always sound as though every word out of his mouth is scripted?  Scripted, with a hint of condescension. I’m sure he’s a very nice man, but not on TV.
Winner–Todd and his brandade!  GO TODD!  Todd gets immunity. I love Todd. He’s surprised that he won. Did I mention I love Todd?
Elimination challenge–part of a menu at a Milestones restaurant. A chain, how lovely. I’d be so proud to have my dish on a chain menu.  I’m not tooting my own horn here, but I don’t think I could cook unimaginatively or poorly enough to score a prize like that.
So this challenge involves using familar ingredient with a twist to create a 3 course menu for a couple celebrating their anniversary (must be true love if they’re at the Milestones and not, say, the TGIF’s or Applebees) –3 ppl drew knives for dessert, 3 for mains, 3 for apps.
Patrick, who looks like Popeye, is a comfortably twisted romantic at heart–love that description of him. He is adorable.
On the other hand, every time Dale opens his mouth he proves what a nob he is.
Drinking and smoking ensues!  That’s all there is to do!  They’re playing that “What’s  your porn star name?” game. Funny!  Funny stuff.
Oh, there’s more than one couple celebrating. Good thing, that’s a lot of food.
Here come the judges, seating at a nondescript table in a nondescript restaurant.
Apps: Todd/Connie/Andrea (Connie worries about her onion rings, but that’s haute cuisine for these diners)
Todd: nori wrapped salmon–salmon too rare for average diner, too big for app, not easy to share
Connie: pork croquettes w/onion rings–feels like milestones, perfect bar food, winner dish (they look fab)
Andrea: goat cheese ravioli–bit dry, bit granular, not good 😦 the black garlic doesn’t go with the goat cheese, looks dirty
2 walk ins create a crises–much swearing as all the app mise en place is gone off the line
Imagine, the nerve of people to just walk in. It’s a restaurant!  Andrea has “balls the size of watermelons” No wonder she’s unhappy behind the line, that must be painful.
Entrees:
Boys are moving the chits around and Francois is losing his cool. Arguments over running the pass. Oh, boys. Do you not all work lines? Don’t you know first chit in first out? Get it together!
Francois:roasted sablefish and gnocchi (he made gnocchi for the quickfire too) lots of love for Francois (ooops, I mean “amour”)
Rob: sirloin w/goat cheese pave-contemporary for this restaurant, beef is a disaster and nothing to recommend in this dish
Patrick:pork tenderloin (some diners’ pork was raw) presentation terrible, too many flavours, too much, badly constructed, nothing a home run, cafeteria food

Desserts:
Dale:pavlova with cherries and basil cream–fail. Way too precious, complicated and wrong for chain. Let me add it’s wrong for anything–he’s piped the meringues out in little sausages and it looks disgusting.
Daryl:chocolate fondant-no twist, molten cake’s been done better but suitable for milestones (mediocre and suitable for milestones, go figure)
Dustin:his girlfriends shortcake (she a pastry chef, so that might be a good thing)–looks great and  has lemon curd for the twist(yum).  Execution/presentation a hit. Strawberry love! Home run!

Judges Table
Connie, Francois, Dustin (these are obviously the top 3) are called to the table.
Congratulations!  You’ll have your dishes featured at Milestones!  MS is giving them all 2K!
Much adulation from the judges–and their dishes did indeed look the best. When are we getting scratch and sniff tv? And will lick and taste tv be far behind?
Dustin’s the winner!  Yeah Dustin’s girlfriend!

Cue serious music for bad news:
Dale, Patrick and Andrea
Andrea’s dish–temperature an issue, filling grainy, off colour, cold food inexcuseable
Patrick’s–aerial drop onto the plate, too rare/raw/dry, sloppy, saffron twist a flop, looked like slop in a cafeteria, fusion/confusion
Dale’s–like bringing a 12 gauge shotgun to a quail hunt (think he means overdone, no?), disappointing, not a pavlova, he completed ignored the challenge and was a failure
And who sucked the most?
Iron Chef commercial!  Chairman!  He’s Wo Fat in the Hawaii Five-O reboot!
But he did not suck the most.
Patrick gets the boot and he’s really sad, and so am I. His dish was bad but his attitude is great. Good bye Patrick!  Go home to your husband and back to having fun with your food–we love you!
Next time: Restaurant Wars!

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