Quickfire Challenge: The cheftestants compete in teams of three to test their knife skills. The first round involves sharpening knives so that they can cut paper. The second round involves turning potatoes, which means cutting them into a very specific shape. The team that moves on to the third round is Sheldon, Josh and Micah, who have to compete against one another to cut down two rabbits. Micah ends up winning a very fancy knife and bragging rights.
Immunity Challenge: Cook a dish based on a highlight from one of the previous nine seasons, but make it healthier. Here are the dishes:
Josie had Season 1, "I'm not your bitch, bitch" and made herb roasted chicken with parsnip puree and steamed root vegetables. The judges thought it was fine, but not exciting.
Stefan had Season 2, the Betty/Marcel fight and made roasted red pepper soup with bacon and grilled mimolette cheese sandwich. The judges think the sandwich is a little too greasy, but the soup is good.
John had Season 3, Howie's confrontation with Anthony Bourdain, and he made umami risotto with chicken, salmon roe, burdock root and carrot emulsion. The judges think the rice in the risotto isn't cooked properly.
Sheldon had Season 4, one of the many Dale Stew Room brawls, and he made beef Carpaccio with poi aioli, mizuna and mushroom salad and silken tofu foam. The judges don't like the presentation, but some of the side dishes are okay.
Lizzie had Season 5, "It's Top Chef, not Top Scallop," and made seared scallops with roasted fennel, garlic puree, orange and olive salad. Lizzie knew the scallops weren't good, but she didn't have an alternative so she had to serve them. The problem is that the judges can tell that the scallops are subpar.
Josh had Season 6, when they cooked for the Air Force, and made soy-glazed pork tenderloin with smoked cashew puree and heirloom peaches. The judges think the pork is cooked well, and the complement goes well.
Brooke had Season 7, when the pea puree got stolen, and she made smoke salmon with forbidden black rice and English pea and parsnip puree. The judge think everything is nicely cooked.
Kristen had Season 8, Carla's chicken pot pie with Jimmy Fallon, and she made poached chicken breast, carrot puree with garlic and tofu emulsion. The judges loved how Kristen lightened the dish, but kept the flavor.
Micah had Season 9, the horrible Bev/Heather collaboration and he made five-spiced duck breast with miso polenta and pickled cherries. Tom liked the duck and the cherries, but the other judges think miso and polenta together are not good.
They bring out five people, with Josh, Brooke and Kristen being the top three, and John and Lizzie being on the bottom two. Kristen is the winner for making a homey dish that didn't look homey and it was healthy while retaining all the flavor of chicken pot pie.
John makes excuses as usual for why his risotto was unevenly cooked. Lizzie knew her scallops were terrible and doesn't even try to excuse it. Padma throws them a twist, which is that they will watch the memorable scene from this season and have a cook-off. The memorable scene is CJ's burger.
As they cook, John and Lizzie spar over sharing ingredients (I blame John) (always). John cooks a lamb burger with fried eggs and spicy pickle, tomato and pomegranate salad. The judges find the burger a bit dry and wonder about the healthiness of the egg, but compliment the salad. Lizzie cooks a chicken burger with goat cheese ricotta and dill pickle roasted red pepper salad. The judges like the burger and the salad -- their only critique is that it could have used a tiny bit more seasoning. Tom says he can't find much to critique about either dish. But then they send John home!!!!!!!12!!!!11! I didn't realize how much I wanted him to go home until he got eliminated. What a dick he was. Please don't let him win Last Chance Kitchen.
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Hey, did you know that Stefan uses wrinkle cream? You do now. I also found out that Stefan is the same age as me, and I can't decide if that's flattering or not. On the one hand, I don't think I look as old as him. On the other hand, he's accomplished a lot more in his life than I have. So I guess it's a draw. Anyway, Sheldon interviews that they're down to nine cheftestants, and the competition is getting tighter. There's also a weirdo interlude where we see that Sheldon sharpens his knives every day. Why is this relevant? We'll find out shortly.
The cheftestants enter the kitchen and find Padma standing there with some dude named Bob Kramer. He's a master bladesmith, which is a super cool job title. Anyway, he makes custom knives for chefs and they sell for thousands of dollars. For the Quickfire, they cheftestants will test their knife skills. There are three rounds. In the first round, they will compete in teams of three to sharpen dull knives. The first two teams to sharpen their knives such that they can cut a piece of paper will advance. In the second round, the teams will have to tourne fifty potatoes. The first team to finish will move on to the final round, where the teammates will compete against one another to break down and French two rabbits. The first cheftestant to do so wins a Bob Kramer knife and gets immunity.
They draw knives to determine teams, and they are as follows: John, Kristen, and Josie are the red team, Josh, Sheldon, and Micah are the blue team, and Stefan, Lizzie, and Brooke are the green team. Padma adds that if they nick themselves, they will be disqualified. They all get to sharpening. John keeps peer pressuring his teammates to get their knives checked, worried that someone will beat them to it. The green team gets checked first, but Brooke's knife isn't sharp enough so they have to keep trying. John calls for a check of the red team even though Kristen thinks her knife isn't sharp enough, and then John's knife is the one that's too dull. HA HA HA! John does a bit more sharpening and the red team is the first to finish. The blue team finishes next, so the green team is out.
Moving on to round two, tourne fifty potatoes. Josie explains that you have to cut the potatoes into seven-sided footballs. Here's a shocker: John is an expert at this. Josie nicks herself and gets disqualified, and her team must continue without her. So now there are two people going against three, but John's sure he can make up the difference. The blue team finishes and calls for a check, and the judge says they're good.