A Very Special Episode of Top Chef
Stephen's "perfect omelet" is up next. Oh, and his explanation is so awesomely smug. "The perfect omelet is simple. All it really takes is a little bit of attention to detail. I've been executing this sort of excellence for years now." Yes, you have. No, I'm being serious because I'm just delighting in everything he says tonight. The more pompous and self-congratulatory he gets, the more I giggle.
Harold presents his Parmesan Shirred Eggs with Soy Butter. That sounds…sort of weird, but okay, it's Harold. I trust him. The judges taste and move on to Marcel's "Ode to a Spanish Breakfast" with scrambled eggs stuffed prettily into eggshells and dressed with saffron foam. Colicchio chuckles over this, and Ilan snaps his head up to look over at them. Speaking of Ilan, his dish is next and I now see that he has a different design carved into this side of his head. If you let your eyes go blurry, it sort of looks like a mountain range. His egg thing is an egg white omelet with the yolks whisked into a béarnaise sauce. Ilan tells us that his dish is really small and that's why he didn't get a chance to taste it. However, he did season it, "but blindly." The omelet may be small and hard to taste but he could have tasted the sauce for seasoning. Our chefs always wanted us to taste egg dishes in their raw state to check for seasoning. I had a hard time doing that.
Elia silently -- she's very quiet this entire episode -- stands next to her Panko-Fried Eggs with Tarragon and Paprika as the judges slurp their bites down. Finally, we end with Sam's Fried Eggs Over Pickled Cranberries and Cherries with a Pine Nut Vinaigrette. Damn, my mouth is puckering just thinking about it. Although, I can see where he's going with it. It's sort of the same flavor concept of a classic poached egg salad on bitter frisée with an astringent vinaigrette. You break into that yolk and the fatness is just going to meld with and balance out the bitter and sharp of the dish. The added lardons don't hurt either. Colicchio wipes his mouth -- is he spitting it out? -- and proclaims the dish, "Interesting." Sam notes that calling a dish "interesting" isn't exactly a compliment. Yeah, it's how my mother got by with criticizing my hair without really criticizing it. "Hasn't Keckler done something interesting with her hair?"