Top Chef

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Three Courses, No Waiting

Lynne and Arnold are teamed up. Lynne explains that she has a hard time being on a team because she's used to being the boss and she's trying not to be overbearing. Arnold interviews that he's cooked with Lynne before and he's hoping to make it 2.5 wins in a row for him so he can buy a Louis Vuitton bag. Well, it's nice to have goals. Kenny interviews that he ran a restaurant in a five-star hotel right after his wife died, and it helped him get his confidence back. Since he has that unique experience, he thinks he has the competition locked up. I feel like there are a few too many, "I'm totally going to win this challenge" clips of Arnold and Kenny, and since I've watched reality television before (just a few times), I know that's a bad sign. Alex and Ed are teamed up. Ed interviews that Alex is adamant that he can cook pancakes, and Ed is dubious about their sophistication, but he's letting it go. This is something the judges will hate; not standing up for what you know is right.

The cheftestants arrive back in the kitchen to find a panel of judges, including past cheftestants Mike I. (boo!), Bryan Voltaggio (yay!), and Spike (boo!). I could have lived my whole life not ever seeing Mike I. again. The other judges are Beth Scott, a chef named Nora (I would rewind to find out who she is, but she's barely in the episode, so let's move on), Padma, Tom, and Eric Ripert. Holy giant panel. Padma calls time and the teams get to cooking their breakfast dishes. The way this first round works is that two teams will be declared safe based on breakfast dishes. The remaining teams will have to continue on and cook lunch. And.... go!

Amanda and Stephen are making a Hollandaise sauce and they decide they'll know it's done when it tastes good. Yeesh. Hollandaise is a pretty fragile sauce and not something you just want to wing. Lynne is confident about their dish, because she makes it in her class all the time. It looks pretty messy, though. Tiffany has, as she stated earlier, taken the lead on their dish, a crab cake Benedict (which I would totally order and kind of want one right now), and she feels the pressure of Tim relying heavily on her. Andrea and Kelly want to win the breakfast round so that they can be declared safe and not have to cook any more. Ed interviews that their dish is very challenging (so probably not the best choice since Beth Scott said they need something that is easy to reproduce in their chain). Apparently, all of the components need to come together at the last minute, which seems like poor planning. Also, Alex's pancakes are looking quite... charred? And Ed disagrees with how Alex wants to plate the dish, thinking that it lacks finesse. In the end, they don't quite get all of their stuff on the plate, including the Hollandaise sauce they created. Oops.

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Top Chef

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