Top Chef
Manhattan Project

Episode Report Card
Keckler: C+ | Grade It Now!
Sara's Told To Cheese Off
Hung starts his prep while the other cheftestants watch. He says, "I want to take the time to do everything with finesse, style, grace, and elegance." Get him a pillbox hat and he's Jackie O. Hung goes on that he wanted to show his fellow cheftestants what technique is. Brian tells us that Hung does have incredible knife and cooking skills, adding that "this dish is about being, like, a fabulous flavor." Tonight, we are suddenly getting interviews with Brian, Hung, and Dale with clothes, hairstyles, and facial hair that are totally different from what we've seen all year. I suspect they were filmed in Aspen, which means Dale is definitely going. Hung wants to showcase classic French techniques, so he's going to sous-vide his chicken, crisp the skin, and serve it with Pommes Dauphine and a salad. Hung explains that the sous-vide process seals all the flavor and moisture into the chicken and allows the meat to be poached very slowly at a low temperature. "These are common things that all chefs understand and should know if they've been classically trained," he adds pompously.

The other cheftestants finally get into the kitchen to start cooking. Juxtaposing Hung's ego, we get Casey telling us, "I'm not classically trained, but there's more to being a chef than just classical training." Sara tells us she does things that are classic but she adds her own twist. Hung tells us, "Brian's dish looked like a pile of mess. Very home-style cooking." Which is only enjoyable to average palates. And we have now come to that time of night when The Brian Show: Now With More MALARKEY! delights and entertains us. The Brians explain to us, "I have a bright-light, extreme-heavy, peasant-expensive, gourmet meal." He really doesn't know if he's coming or going, does he? The Brians keep going, "I'm gonna to take all the dark meat and put it on the bottom of my dish, and that's going to be kind of all baked together. And on top of that I'm gonna take a really nice, kind of light-fluffy mashed potato and fold in my leeks to make it neon green, so there's going to be a brightness to it, an earthiness, a richness to it." When has "neon" green ever been appetizing for anything other than a Cancun nightclub shot? Sara says she's staying true to her Jamaican roots by doing chicken fricassée. She's marinating the chicken in goat's-milk yogurt and mustard and then doing potato and pearl couscous risotto with an onion confit and salad. ["I have to add here that in the future, I will always quote Sara when describing any unusual beauty routine: "I am marinating my breasts in a goat's yogurt." -- Miss Alli] Given the probable nationality of the judges, it had better be a real confit and not just throwing the name around as they so often do on this show. Also, how is fricassée Jamaican? Dale is doing a duet of chicken: two different dishes with the same sauce to show how versatile the sauce is. Do you know why I'm not upset? Because a "duet" is totally different from a "duo." Totally.

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Top Chef




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