Former cheftestants Stefan, CJ and Josie are the judges of the first Quickfire, which is to divide into teams of three and make a dish using local shellfish. The least successful team is Eliza, Danyele and Josh, who made an underseasoned, watery chowder. The winning team is Sheldon, Kuniko and John, who made a geoduck sashimi with apples. It seems like Kuniko had the most to do with that dish. Only one of them gets immunity, so they draw knives and immunity goes to John. Throughout this challenge, we also learn that working on a team with Carla is a nightmare. She never stops talking. No, I mean NEVER.
Padma announces that CJ, Stefan and Josie are joining the competition. WHAT? I had no idea this was coming. I love CJ. I also never realized how short Stefan is. Standing with CJ the Giant, Josie and Padma, he looks like a child. The three of them will be a team, since everyone else has to stay in their Quickfire Teams for the Elimination Challenge. Padma tells them about that challenge: each team will plan a dish using regional ingredients and then they will have forty-seven minutes to prep and serve it in the Space Needle restaurant to the judges and Tom Douglas, famous Seattle chef.
Here are the dishes served:
Sheldon, Kuniko and John: chili-oil poached cod with dashi, spot prawn shabu shabu. The judges love pretty much everything about it and have no complaints.
Lizzie, Carla and Chrissy: poached salmon with seasonal vegetables and buerre blanc. The judges note that the salmon's done perfectly, even if it's a little underseasoned, but the sauce has enough flavor to make up for it.
CJ, Josie and Stefan: quail breast with confit spot prawn, cherries and porcini. They changed their dish to quail at the last minute since everyone else was making fish and Josie had to redo the cherries when CJ's first attempt sucked. The judges think that the proteins are overcooked and the cherries are bitter.
Jeffrey, Brooke and Bart: pan roasted halibut, mushrooms, English peas, wheat beer with herb sabayon. The judges are impressed with the sides, but the fish is overcooked and the sauce is bland.
Jen, Micah and Tyler: crispy seared salmon, local vegetables and spot prawn butter sauce. The judges note that there are two nearly identical salmon dishes; luckily for this team, they think the salmon is cooked perfectly and they like the sauce better.
Danyele, Eliza, and Josh: pan roasted cod, mushrooms, fava beans, pickled green apple and garlic scape pistou. Josh is turning out to be kind of a prick, and not just because of his stupid moustache. He's already threatened to fight like three people and has a serious inferiority complex because he's from Oklahoma. The judges think the cod is cooked perfectly, but they wish there was more of the pistou and the apple.
Padma calls the team of John, Kuniko and Sheldon in and tells them they served the best dish of the day. If John doesn't stop wearing his glasses pushed up on his forehead, I don't know what. Either put them on top of your head or in your pocket or, I don't know… wear them like a normal person! Either you need them or you don't, but you look like a dipshit, so cut it out. Anyway, the judges loved the fish in chili oil, so Kuniko gets the win.
The bottom two are the veterans' team and the team of Bart, Jeffrey and Brooke. The veterans flounder around, making excuses, before finally remembering to just take responsibility and shut up. The other team doesn't know that and takes some heat for their overcooked fish and bland sauce. The judges send poor gay Jeffrey home for his overcooked fish and Padma even cries a little. Is she pregnant again? That's an unusual show of emotion from her.
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The cheftestants walk into the Top Chef kitchen for the first time, and Micah interviews that he was giving everyone the look to let them know that he's the top dog. Relax, Micah. Put your dick away. Let's cook something before you get all crazy. Padma enters along with previous cheftestants Stefan, Josie, and CJ. I looooooove CJ. I grudgingly enjoyed Stefan but it was mostly with Fabio. I don't know how I'll feel about him alone. Anyway, these former cheftestants are the judges for the Quickfire.
For the Quickfire, Padma instructs them to divide into five groups of three. Since they know nothing about one another, this is mostly based on where they happened to be standing. The task is to make a dish highlighting local shellfish in twenty minutes. Josie advises them to figure out who's doing what and fast, so they don't waste time that they could be cooking. John, who is already annoying me with his habit of wearing his glasses up on his forehead like he has an extra pair of eyes up there, starts muttering to his teammates while Padma is still talking, and she totally calls him out on it. Good for you, Padma.
Time starts and everyone scatters like ants on an ant hill that has just been crushed. Not that I'd ever do anything so cruel, but I do have an older brother. Many of the teams are going for geoduck, because it can be prepared quickly. Kristen adds that, "It looks like a penis...a really big one." That is definitely true. And they have to dig around in a pit of mud to get one out, so there's no telling how many are in there. John, Brooke, and Eliza are all digging around in the mud, looking for geoduck, but John seems to get the last one. Eliza grabs razor clams, whatever those are, so now her team has to change strategies.
The only all-woman team is Carla, Lizzie, and Chrissy. Carla is just talking, talking, talking. It's like Lizzie and Chrissy are having one conversation together and Carla is having a whole different conversation all by herself. Josh walks by and is like, "Thank God I'm not on that team." I hear you, brother.
Bart explains that Belgian food is amazing because they've been conquered so many times that their food is an amalgam of all different cultures. Brooke is on Bart's team, and she explains that he's a classic chef, while she is much more rustic, but she's trying to be open to suggestions. Meanwhile, Carla is just running around the kitchen after Lizzie, yelling and screeching. Oh my God, I would kill her.