Top Chef

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Old MacDonald

I am by no means a PETA member; I enjoy eating animals a lot, and while I can get behind more humane treatment of said animals while they are living and in how they are slaughtered, I like to eat burgers and steaks and chicken salad and crab crakes, and I understand what has to happen for those foods to make it in my mouth-hole. I say that because...the crab-killing footage is kind of disturbing. Crabs are chopped in half while still alive. People are removing the shells while the crab is still alive. People are dumping the crabs into boiling water while still alive. People are putting trays of live crabs into the oven. I get that these are all legitimate ways to prepare crab (I guess), but I just wasn't emotionally prepared for Crab Death Watch 3000 during my reality cooking show. What's next, they have to do that thing where you kill a chicken by swinging it around by the neck? And the editors seem to miss no opportunity to point out to us that the crabs are still alive, for example, when going into the oven, by showing one little crab waving its claw around like, "Um, could someone turn on the AC?"

Ed and Angelo are both making Asian-inspired dishes. Angelo immediately assumes that Ed is trying to fuck with him, because it's not possible for someone to independently decide to make something Asian. Any time anyone adds lemongrass to their dish, they are fucking with Angelo! Andrea explains that she's used to cooking stone crabs, which are bigger and thus easier to get the meat. Tamesha doesn't know how to pick the meat from crabs, because she was once allergic. I'm starting to think she has no culinary training and only knows how to cook things she made growing up. Last week, she talked about making baby food for her brother, and this week, she's never made crab because she was allergic at one point. How do you outgrow that, by the way? I guess it's possible. Anyway, Angelo gives her a quick tutorial and she's off to cook.

Kenny is very sweaty. I don't know if he's just a person that sweats more than normal or if, because his head is shaved, it just shows up more and he has no hair to soak it up. It kind of makes me never want to eat his food, though. Maybe he should wrap his head in a towel of some sort. He's planning on making a tasting plate with three components, because he is the speed demon and can cook three times as fast as anyone else.

Kevin is making a chowder that apparently involves stabbing the crabs to death first. He explains how being on the bottom last week really hurt him, and how he's there for his family. Again, standard reality show fare. Amanda is making something that sounds very chef-y, and based on what we've seen from her, I kind of doubt she has the technical ability to do so. It's like she's seen other people make it, so she figures she can do it too, or something. She also has an open, bleeding cut on her knuckle so I will add her to the list of chefs whose food I wouldn't eat because gross. Tim is cleaning the crabs like a pro, because I don't know if you know this, but he grew up in Maryland. He denigrates the others who are making dishes that are "dressed all up in Asian influence" since he's going for a clean crab dish. And...time's up!

Padma and Patrick get ready to judge, and they start out with Tiffany, who made a hot and sour crab soup, arbol chiles, and spaghetti leeks. Ed made jumbo lump crab with Thai basil, mango and cucumber salad. Patrick asks if it's Thai-inspired (what gave that away, the name of one of the INGREDIENTS?) and Tim looks all judgmental because he ain't having that Asian shit with his crab because he's from Maryland! Angelo made something pretentious. Okay, it's blue crab broth infused with lemongrass and ginger.

Tim the purist made beer steamed crabs with avocado, passion fruit, and heirloom vinaigrette. I'm so sure his grandmother used avocado and passion fruit in her Sunday crab meals. Because those are native to Maryland, right? Stephen made crab salad in sweet bell peppers with brandy basil dressing. I think Stephen needs to work on his presentation, because even with the colorful bell peppers, his plate looks kind of gray somehow. And wilty. Tamesha made crab chowder with lemongrass, ginger, cardamom, and coconut milk. So she basically made Angelo's dish in chowder form? I see why he's her mentor.

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Top Chef

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