Thursday, June 27, 2013

Masterchef Season 4 Week 6 Recap, Wedding Bells are Ringing…

Christine Ha Returns to Masterchef
     I love my Wednesday nights, Masterchef is such a great show. There seems to have been more drama this season than usual, and I don’t like that, but there are some definite contestants that I am rooting for. By this time every other season I felt like I had an idea of who the final 4 will be, this season I really don’t have a solid idea, lots of guesses, but nothing solid. Well onto the show!
     The 13 remaining contestants enter the Masterchef kitchen where the judges meet them to begin the challenges for the week. Their mystery box challenge involves a whole Pigs head, eyes staring right back at you. I wonder how our cute vegetarian Bri will handle that?
     Gordon talks about how this challenge focuses on snout to tail cooking. That they need to make the most of any ingredient Very quickly the contestants learn that in their cupboard they have the head already butchered for them, which makes it lots easier that is for sure. I wanted to see them butcher the head, I wanted to see how they handled that challenge, but apparently that wasn’t what the producers had in mind.          

     The contestants all scurry around trying to figure out what to do. Can I just say that I love that Bri covered the pigs head with a towel as she cooks. Poor Bri, this has beyond out of her element. If I were competing I would have probably taken the cheeks and tongue and turned them into a taco that I would have topped with a bit of crispy pig’s ear, and a citrus and avocado salad on the side to add some creaminess and brightness. Nothing fancy per say, but something that I know I could have made delicious in the set time frame.          

     The dishes all for the most part look really good, at least the ones that they have let us see. Every week my gripe is that there are so many dishes that I don’t get to see. I guess the time constraints mean that is always going to happen, but I want to see some people and their dishes getting more air time.          

     The tasting begins,          

     Lynn goes first with braised tongue and cheek, Gordon loves it. Second is Jessie, Krissi looks unhappy about that, braised cheek and ear with corn and black eye peas, Joe and Graham love it. Gordon calls it Georgia meets Mexico, likes the dish as well. Krissi still clearly has issues with Jessie, oh well. Next up is Jonny with braised tongue and cheek tacos. The judges like his dish as well.          

     The winner of the mystery box challenge is….Lynn, way to go Lynn! He follows the judges to learn his advantage with the elimination challenge. See? They didn’t show hardly any of the dishes from the mystery box challenge, so disappointing!          

     While in the pantry Lynn gets to meet a special guest, Christine Ha, the season 3 winner. He gets to pick from 3 of her favorite ingredients featured heavily in her new cookbook, this ingredient will be what everyone needs to cook. The choices are chicken, catfish, live Dungeness crab. He gets to pick the ingredient with one person, and then the others all get to use another ingredient that he chooses. This is an interesting advantage, he definitely needs to choose smartly with this one.          

     Lynn decided that he is choosing catfish for Krissi, and crabs for the other. This is very interesting I understand the logic of the decision he made, he is betting that Krissi was not familiar with catfish and how to deal with it. Krissi of course is not a good sport and begins trash talking and swearing. *sigh* So glad that you keep it classy Krissi. Poor Bri, says, “bad day for vegetarians.” Poor Bri is having to cook a live crab, that is a tough one.          

     Christine has a surprise for the contestants, a blindfold, they are cooking this challenge blindfolded. They have 60 minutes to complete the challenge. Judges are laughing at the contestants, Poor Christine can hear that it sounds chaotic, but can’t see it firsthand. Apparently Christine set that up as a Joke, they don’t really have to do it blindfolded. They should have, I would have love to see that. Come to think of it, probably some sort of liability issues or something prevented them, but seriously they should have had to see what it is really like for Christine.          

     Krissi is running her mouth and swearing again, no class Krissi. I know I have mentioned this before, but I have watched so many shows with Gordon Ramsay and this is the very first time that I have ever watched a show where he was not the one swearing the most. This show it isn’t even close, Krissi has him beat, not an accomplishment though.          

     There are some questionable crab dishes going on. I am curious why this is so challenging to some people. I love working with crab. Krissi gives attitude to Joe as he was walking through the stations, wrong person to give attitude to.          

     Christine is going to be one of the guest judges. She seems so nice, I wonder if she will be as direct as the other judges. Anyway, the tastings begin.          

     Krissi is first with fried catfish with bacon cheddar mashed potatoes and steamed asparagus. For some odd reason she left the skin on which is like snakeskin. Maybe Lynn was right suspecting that Krissi wasn’t familiar with catfish. As a catfish aficionado I can tell you always get rid of the skin if you are frying catfish, it just gets nasty. Christine thinks it is too earthy and needed to be elevated, Graham calls it a 6.99 blue plate special, Joe says her catfish tastes like mud, Joe calls her a know it all and says that she is wasting his time, says that for him she is done.          

     Krissi of course is peeved and grumbles and talks to people on the way back to her station. Proclaiming that her fish was perfect and that Joe doesn’t know what he is talking about. Joe calls Krissi out for talking about him behind his back. Not looking good for Krissi.          

     Next up Natasha with ginger crab cakes with a beet salad, Christine & Joe like it. It looked very pretty on the plate, I would have liked to try it. Next up Bri with her summer crab stack, Graham calls it delicious. The onto James with his spicy crab creole, Christine really liked the levels of flavor, Gordon calls is phenomenal. Looking very good for James, I like him.          

     Next up Beth, with a marscapone crab cake that Joe spits it out, calls it raw. Christine doesn’t like the texture. Joe calls it disgusting. Poor Beth, I really like her.          

     Luca made a crab risotto, it looks dreadful, and texture is completely wrong. Christine calls it too salty. Joe calls it a disaster, saying he used way too much fish sauce. Luca knew that fish sauce was one of Christine’s favorite ingredients and wanted to include it for her. Poor Luca, I am still rooting for him. I love the fact that when Luca does make a mistake he owns up to it, and doesn’t argue with the judges or try to say why he is right. I love that he shows humility by being able to take criticism like a man. He is proving to be a class act in this show. I am definitely going to root for him to the very end.          

     Apparently they aren’t showing the other dishes because the judges go to deliberate. I would have liked to see what Bethy or Eddie, or Savannah made. Speaking of Savannah where has she been this episode and last? Maybe now that Lynn has started getting air time she isn’t? I am curious to see more of her.          

     Top 2 are Natasha & James, James was the top dish of the challenge, and they will be team captains in the next challenge. The bottom 3 are Beth, Luca, and Krissi.          

     Natasha thinks Krissi needs to go home. I know that all of you are shocked by that revelation. Luca is declared safe, he gets to continue on, Beth and Krissi are left. Gordon tells Krissi that she has an attitude but doesn’t have the skills to back it up. Amazingly enough Krissi has the nerve to roll her eyes as Gordon says that. I may not like Krissi, but I have to admit she is far gutsier than I will ever be, I’d never have the nerve to do that!          

     Krissi still has an attitude, but Beth goes home, Gordon tells Krissi to get it back together. Gordon tells Beth to believe in herself more. Boo! I like Beth! I am sad to see Beth go home. The other contestants seem disappointed to see her go as well.          

     On to the Team Challenge.          

     A cute couple appears in the Masterchef kitchen, and the contestants learn that they are going to cook for the couple’s wedding that will take place the next day. My goodness, that is a brave couple.           Krissi doesn’t like the bride and balks at her list. Her real problem is probably that the bride is a pretty thin girl. I’m sorry that was tacky of me, we’ll just leave it at the facts, Krissi doesn’t like the Bride.          

     Graham Elliot is cooking the appetizers, and Gordon will be doing the dessert, so the contestants are doing the entrees, lets see how they do. We know at least two of the courses will be phenomenal. On to picking the teams.          

     James picks Lynn first, no surprise there. Natasha picks Eddie, smart choice Natasha! Then the picking continues with Jessie, Jordan, Jonny, Bri, Savannah, Luca and Krissi is last and on Natasha’s team. Natasha and James have to pick one person from their team who will not be cooking, but that person will also be free from elimination. Natasha tells Krissi that she is not cooking in this challenge. While I am not a Natasha fan, she is playing very smartly, she knows that her team will move so much smoother with Krissi not participating. While I know she wants Krissi to go, the best way for her to keep herself safe is to make sure her team wins, that means no Krissi on the team.          
     James picks Bri to sit out. James, I don’t know that was a great idea. They have to prepare a vegetarian dish as well, I personally would have probably kept the vegetarian, plus she does seem to always give her 100% in every challenge, so not sure on that decision.          

     They have 2 hours to make the entrees for over 100 wedding guests.          

     Graham’s appetizer is a spring pea soup. Graham’s dessert is a brown bread ice cream with toffee cake. The entrees are supposed to compliment these two dishes.          

     Natasha is running around without a clue, looks bad for Natasha. Blue team has a lamb dish, red team has halibut. Interesting choices, I am curious how this pans out for everyone.          

     All of the guests loved the appetizer course that was Graham’s, leaving a very tough act to follow that is for sure. Lynn is cracking under the pressure, blue team is 5 tables behind, poor Lynn. Graham starts to help expedite for the blue team. He makes a world of difference to the blue team.          

     The bride and team likes the red team best, but the plating of the blue team best. Of course everyone likes Gordon’s dessert. Can I say that I love that dessert as well, I have several of Gordon’s cookbooks and I can not find the recipe for that dessert in any of them. If you know where to find it please let me know.          

     The winning team was the red team, the blue team goes to the pressure test. The judges each get to pick one person to be safe, Joe picks Jessie, Graham picks Luca, and Gordon picks James. This is interesting that the Judges pick this week instead of the team captain who competes in the pressure test. The pressure test is between Jonny and Lynn, so sad cause I like both of them.          

     They will be making macarons, oh dear that will be hard for both of them. Those take practice. Jonny apparently loves to bake and says he is in his element, never pegged him for a baker, but that’s cool. This is the hardest pressure test I have seen yet. Poor guys!          

     I love making macarons, but they can’t be rushed and they can just fall to pieces for the darnedest reasons. I personally can’t make macarons very well at all if there is any type of humidity in the air, so even the weather can cause it to fall apart for them. I feel bad for them, this is a very tough pressure test.          

     Lynn’s macarons look very good, a little too thick though, Gordon says they are too sweet. Jonny’s macarons look a little mashed and worn, Gordon calls them delicious though. Graham likes the macarons too. The person eliminated is Jonny, poor Jonny. They were both class acts, I like both of them very much.          

     My thoughts on this week:          

     I am very disappointed at Krissi’s attitude this week, I am surprised that she wasn’t eliminated. She is working with borrowed time I am afraid. Maybe she is still around for the ratings that come from her antics and drama.          

     I have to say that I really like Luca, I am really hoping for this season’s underdog. I think he shows an amazing amount of perseverance and determination. Also he is being very classy in how he handles himself, so I have high hopes for him.           

     I am disappointed at how many contestants are getting next to nothing in air time. I would like to see more of them. I have high hopes for several of them, but its hard to even get an idea of how they are doing, somewhere in the middle, not getting any notice.     
     As always I am eager for another week and another episode!


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