Art Smith

ICA: Flay vs. Thiam

Finally a new Iron Chef!  After the fiasco of last week known as Cupcake Wars (if Twitter comments are any indication that phrase is doomed) we need an actual cooking contest to cleanse our palates, call it Reality Sorbet.

Pierre ThiamPierre Thiam is the master of Contemporary West African cuisine.  Which stands to reason since the acclaimed Brooklyn chef actually hails from Senegal.  Today he is the executive chef at Le Grand Dakar where he has pledged to introduce a love of African food to America.  And judging by the critics’ chatter he is doing a good job.  Thiam has also sought to further educated the American palate with his book Yolele! Recipes From the Heart of Senegal (available at  For more on Chef Pierre here is a fine article from Friend’s Eat.

Senegalese food is famous for its spicy, intense flavors.  But Iron Chef Bobby Flay is no stranger to spices of any kind.  Both chefs seemed to be in their element when the secret ingredient was announced, papaya.  The judges for tonight were Karine Bakhoum (who looks fabulous after dropping some weight but she has retained her voluptuous curves.), Art Smith and Alpana Singh, the youngest woman ever to be inducted into the Court of Master Sommeliers.

Click HERE for the outcome.

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ICA: Flay vs. Thiam – Outcome

SPOILER ALERT: The following information is the outcome of Flay vs. Stone.  If you want information on the combatants click HERE.  If you are only interested in the outcome read on.

Judges for Battle: Papaya were Karine Bakhoum, Art Smith and Alpana Singh.

Flay                Thiam
Taste: 30        Taste: 25
Plating: 14       Plating: 11
Originality: 15  Originality: 13
Total: 59         Total: 49

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Winner: Iron Chef Flay with a score only one point away from a perfect score.  If you haven’t already, be sure to check out my exclusive interview with Iron Chef Bobby Flay.

Next week’s match-up features Symon vs. Brown.

ICA: Cat Cora vs. Art Smith

Another rerun this week.  The 2008 battle between Cat Cora and Oprah’s former personal chef Art Smith.  Smith put his Southern influence-American organic against the Iron Chef’s own Southern-born cuisine in Battle: Cheddar Cheese.

According to Art’s website: “Art Smith, chef, author, and television personality has brought back meaning and symbolism to the word “table” and has united families and friends through the sharing of a meal.
Art smith in the Kitchen

“A native of Jasper, Florida, Art studied at the Florida State University School of Business. He began his career with two internships at The Greenbrier Resort and was then selected to attend the prestigious Walt Disney Magic Kingdom College Program. Following graduation, Art took a position working at the Florida Governor’s Mansion where he worked as executive chef for Governor Bob Graham, now a U.S. senator, and his wife Adele. He continued to cook for families all over the globe, including other well-known politicians and celebrities . . .

Here’s the box score courtesy of

Iron Chef Cat Cora’s Dishes
Mole Crackers and Cheddar Cheese Salsa
Beer & Cheddar Soup
Fried Green Tomatoes with Cheese Grits and Rock Shrimp
Pimento Cheeseburger
Chicken & Waffles
Cheddar Ozark Pudding

Challenger Art Smith’s Dishes
Cheddar Soup
Cheddar Biscuit with Soft Shell Crab and Corn Salsa
Cheddar Hoecake with Grilled Steak and Roasted Morels
Fish ‘n Chips with Mac and Cheese
Cheddar Tomato Pie

John T. Edge – Food Author
Cady Huffman – Actress
Tony Abou-Ganim – Mixologist

Iron Chef
Taste: 26
Plating: 11
Originality: 12
Total: 49

Taste: 23
Plating: 10
Originality: 11
Total: 44

Winner: Iron Chef Cat Cora

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Stuart in 80 Words or Less

Stuart is a celebrity chef, food activist and award-winning food writer. He penned the cookbooks Third Coast Cuisine: Recipes of the Gulf of Mexico, No Sides Needed: 34 Recipes To Simplify Life and Amigeauxs - Mexican/Creole Fusion Cuisine. He hosts two Internet cooking shows "Everyday Gourmet" and "Little Grill Big Flavor." His recipes have been featured in Current, Lagniappe, Southern Tailgater, The Kitchen Hotline and on the Cooking Channel.

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Stuart’s Honors & Awards

2015 1st Place Luck of the Irish Cook-off
2015 4th Place Downtown Cajun Cook-off
2015 2nd Place Fins' Wings & Chili Cook-off
2014 2015 4th Place LA Gumbo Cook-off
2012 Taste Award nominee for best chef (web)
2012 Finalist in the Safeway Next Chef Contest
2011 Taste Award Nominee for Little Grill Big Flavor
2011, 12 Member: Council of Media Tastemakers
2011 Judge: 29th Chef's of the Coast Cook-off
2011 Judge: Dauphin Island Wing Cook-off
2011 Cooking Channel Perfect 3 Recipe Finalist
2011 Judge: Dauphin Island Gumbo Cook-off
2011 Culinary Hall of Fame Member
2010 Tasty Awards Judge
2010 Judge: Bayou La Batre Gumbo Cook-off
2010 Gourmand World Cookbook Award Nominee
2010 Chef2Chef Top 10 Best Food Blogs
2010 Denay's Top 10 Best Food Blogs
2009 2nd Place Bay Area Food Bank Chef Challenge
2008 Tava: Discovery Contest Runner-up


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