Recap: Next Iron Chef 3, EP3
So, last week Ming Tsai was actually on the verge of going home. I remember in season one that Mike Symon almost hit the road after episode 1; that is before taking home the prize. Meanwhile Chauhan and Forgione established themselves as the top challengers to a title many have already awarded to Chef Tsai. We shall see.
A little tomfoolery from the judges last week, Mary Dumont had easily the worst showing yet Pagán was sent home. Simon said after one taste of Mary’s pot roast, “It fails immediately.” It was described as shoe leather. Yet somehow she beat out Ming Tsai who’s food all of the judges liked. Hmm.
Challenge #1 – Make a dish featuring a pickled food. Still doing the stupid judging each other thing. They self-judged AGAIN.
Challenge #2 – Catch of the Day. The chefs board the charter boat Monte Carlo and catch their dinner.
Marco Canora – A middle of the pack performance last week after a strong showing in the opener. A viable long shot. 1st dish was too hot. Caught three tiny Scorpion Fish so he’ll probably use some of the sardines that were the bait when they were fishing. Cachuco (fish soup) two ways – one classic, one raw. He lost his artichokes that were to be his garnish. Judges liked his offering. He did very well.
Bryan Caswell – A top three finish last week with his open faced turkey sandwich. Still a solid contender. 1st dish went well. Scorpion fish and Sand Dabs (full of roe). He lost track of time but it still worked. Donatella loved it.
Maneet Chauhan – Maneet is proving to be a stronger contender. She won the 1st challenge last week and had a top three finish on the second. 1st dish went over well. Scorpion Fish. She made escovitch. According to the judges this was her worst offering to date.
Mary Dumont – I honestly do not know how Chef Dumont is still here. Her food last week a terrible on both challenges. She came in dead last is the first challenge and had a bottom three finish. Her fist challenge wasn’t the worst but it was close. Caught a shark and threw it back but also caught a huge Scorpion Fish. Her dish bombed (say it with me now) uh-gin.
Duskie Estes – A middle of the road performance. Duskie continues to be innovative but her execution has yet to equal her creativity. Plating, especially, has hurt her. Estes need helping plating her first dish. Tio and Dumont helped but not with the plating that continues to be an issue for Duskie. She came in last. 2nd challenge she had to wait 60 seconds before starting her dish. She also had to use sardines to string out her small Scorpion Fish. She did quite well by concentrating on her plating.
Marc Forgione – Chef Marc had a huge week. He won last week’s episode and his restaurant, Marc Forgione, was awarded 2 stars from the New York Times, which if you don’t know is a pretty big deal. 1st challenge seemed to go over well, he won. He got to take a fish from someone else if he wanted it and he did taking Tio’s snapper. His dish was great.
Andrew Kirschner – Went home week 1.
Mario Pagán – Went home week 2.
Celina Tio – Another solid week. She isn’t quite yet a threat but at the same time she has proven to be a tough out. Her breakfast offering of fried chicken livers on a doughnut still haunts me. 1st dish was OK – one chef voted it best, one voted it worst. Scorpion Fish and a Red Snapper that was commandeered by Forgione. Then her mixing bowl caught on fire. Food Network actually had plastic mixing bowls for an Iron Chef contest. Bad form, Food Network. Bad form. Tio still put out a good meal.
Ming Tsai – Last week the judges criticized Ming for using too many ingredients even though they all loved his food. How he had a bottom three and not a top is a bit baffling. Again the self-judging went to script. Nitpick Ming. I find it impossible to believe that every week his 1st dish is merely OK while his 2nd dish is great what’s the difference? Oh yeah, actual judges in the 2nd challenge. Scorpion fish which Ming made a home run with. Simon & Symon loved Ming’s dish but Donatella was overly critical.
Leading the pack: Marc Forgione
Dark horse: Ming Tsai, Maneet Chauhan
1st challenge – Chef Fargione.
2nd challenge – Chef Canora.
Quote of the night – “You look like a linebacker, but cook like a ballerina.” Simon to Caswell.
Honorable mention because of it’s audacity. “I don’t want to go home because of a pineapple.” Chef Dumont who has been close to going home each week. We also had an “In it to win it quote” which I hate from Simon.
Have you missed an episode of NIC because you had to bail your goofy little brother out of jail for streaking at the gubernatorial debate? No problem, you can get caught up HERE. Be sure to check out my exclusive interviews with Celina Tio (HERE), Mary Dumont (HERE) and Maneet Chauhan (HERE).
The Next Iron Chef will not be . . .
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