Warrior Chef Redemption: Round 2

Amanda: @Seeing Rose get eliminated was a huge shock. @I’m nervous because she beat me, Nate, and Jo, but she’s out first. @This season is intense.

Karen: @Nobody expected a runner up to go home in the very first elimination. @I think none of us are taking that well.

Jo: @I’m glad Rose went home. @She bullied me last season, so she deserved it.

Jessica: So for this creativity challenge, you have just 45 minutes to prepare a delicious pie! And your time starts now!

Phung: @I think making pies are stupid so I’m not going to bake a pie. @I’m just going to make myself breakfast instead, because it’s a creativity challenge, Jessica outright said that there’s no elimination in this, and I’m hangry.

Karen: @Hearing that Phung isn’t even going to try in this challenge is a huge shock. @Immunity is on the table! @I decide to prepare a meat pie, because I want to do something unique. @I’m doing chorizo, ground beef, apples, and bacon. @I think that the flavors will be great!

Amanda: @I’m not too stoked on the whole idea of making a pie. @For me, what separates a pie from a tart is that a pie has a top crust or maybe just a topping in general. @I’m going to make a classic apple pie with ice cream.

Fanny: @I just made a pie in the last creativity challenge, but that was a savory pie. @For this challenge, I think about a lemon tart with meringue on top. @Yes, it’s a lemon meringue pie. @I think that it’ll be alright, but I’m not aiming to win this challenge.

Henry: @I’m feeling great about it being a pie challenge. @I love key lime pie, and I’m going to make that but with raspberries because raspberry-limeade is something I love to drink when I go fishing with my dad on his yacht. @I’m going to top the pie with a basil meringue. @I think it’s going to be good.

Lucas: @I’m shocked how Henry is still here, because he’s a much weaker cook than the rest of us here. @For this challenge, I’m going to make a mint-chocolate pie. @I’m making a mint Italian meringue and then the chocolate pastry with chocolate ganache. @I think that the flavors are great and it’ll be a general winner.

Tadashi: @I have to prepare a pie and that’s not going to be a whole lot of fun for me. @I’m making a matcha pastry with strawberry-azuki bean filling and a white sesame whipped cream. @I think using the matcha and azuki will set me apart from the rest.

Nate: @I want to get immunity because after that last challenge, I got reamed. @I want to make sure that I stay in the competition. @I’m going to make a blood orange-ginger-blueberry pie with a chai-honey ice cream. @I think that the flavors I have are going to be delicious.

Kira: @I won the last elimination challenge and I want this to keep going. @For my pie, I’m going to make a mint infused key lime pie with basil meringue. @I have some familiarity with pie pastry, so I’m hoping that my basic understanding will be great.

Justin: @Kira and Phung are still my biggest competitors. @Tadashi has Michelin starred experience, but I know that Phung could take him down in the end. @I’m making a blackberry-lavender pie with a thyme infused pastry.

Jessica: Time’s up!

Nate: @I step back and I think that I made a nice pie. @But I see the other pies. @I am stunned by what Lucas put up. @It looks nice.

Karen: @I made the only savory pie. @I think that’ll set me apart.

Jessica: Your judge is Warrior Chef judge, Frank Torres!

Frank: Hi, everyone!

Frank and Jessica taste the dishes.

Jessica: So Frank, who failed to impress you?

Frank: Phung, you didn’t put up a dish, so you’re automatically on the bottom. Fanny, the pastry was slightly undercooked. And Amanda. Your apple pie, I liked the ice cream, but the filling was too watery.

Amanda: @Being on the bottom sucks, but I know that there are strong cooks in this season and I need to step it up. *to Jo* I just feel really bad, because I expected it to be a lot better than this.

Jo: *to Amanda* You’re on the bottom because you’re too cocky and it’s definitely to your hubris.

Amanda: @I’m shocked that he said that. @I thought we were alright, but I guess some people will do whatever it takes to win this season. @Even bully others.

Frank: For my favorites. Karen, the meat pie was inventive and very unique. I loved it. Henry, the raspberry-lime-basil combination was excellent. I really enjoyed the nuances. And Lucas. Presentation-wise, you presented a gorgeous pie and the flavors were there. But tonight, the best pie was baked by… Henry.

Jessica: Congratulations, Henry! You won immunity going into the elimination challenge!

Henry: Wait, really? What?! @I won the challenge and it’s a huge shock, because I have never won a challenge before, and I was on the bottom of the first one this season! @Getting immunity feels awesome!

Phung: @Henry got immunity? @What’s next? @He’s going to win the title? @I don’t even understand it.

Jessica: And now time for the elimination challenge! For this challenge, we want to see you guys make some homeruns!
A cart is wheeled in, carrying pretzels, popcorn, and hotdogs.

Phung: @I see that shit and I’m not happy. @I wish I tried harder so that I could just get immunity and not deal with this.

Nate: @Oh shit. @This sucks.

Jo: @I see the ingredients and I’m feeling a little nervous. @If I have to cook a dish using the hotdogs, then I’m screwed.

Jessica: You have 1 hour to prepare a dish using at least one of these three ingredients. And your time starts now!

Everyone runs to the cart and grabbing the ingredients.

Tadashi: @I grab the popcorn because I do not want to touch those hotdogs. @For my dish, I’m making a corn-uni soup with poached prawns and grilled leeks. @I’m feeling great about this dish and I want to get a second win. @After losing to Vanilla last time, I managed to get promoted to chef de cuisine at Spaggo. @I want to prove to everyone that with hard work and determination, you can become Warrior Chef.

Fanny: @I got the hotdogs. @I’m going grind those up, and combine them with other meats such as short rib, oxtail, and pork shoulder, and prepare a hunters stew, and serve it with some grilled hot dog bun to act as a crouton to soak up the juices. @It’s not really my style, but I know that I can win this challenge.

Justin: @For my dish, I’m going to use the pretzels. @I’m making a pretzel bread crumb to top my squid ink pasta, and then crust some squid rings in the crumbs and deep fry those on top as well. @The twisting of the pretzel reminds me of the tentacles.

Karen: @I got hotdogs. @What the heck does one do with them?! @I grab chicken livers, and I decide to make a ketchup and hot dog pate on a toasted hot dog bun crostini. @Then I’m making my own cornichons and mostarda, to be a play on the relish and mustard. @This might actually work out for me.

Phung: @I grab the hotdogs and the pretzels. @I’m going to make a hot dog ice cream, infusing it with the hot dog fat, and the hot dog buns, and tahini. @For my garnish, I’m going to make a chocolate-stout bread pudding using the soft pretzels. @I’m going to nail this shit because I’m the fucking best and I know I’m going to beat everyone here. @Gonna kick their asses!

Nate: @I can already tell that I do not like Phung. @I’m working next to her, and she’s just making loud noises and rubbing it peoples’ faces that she was a runner-up. @But I know I’m a stronger cook than her. @I got the popcorn, and I’m making a corn congee with popcorn crusted shallots and shrimp, and a popcorn infused soy sauce.

Kira: @Henry, Amanda, and I are sharing a work station, and we can see Nate and Phung across from us, and it’s funny. @Phung is so in your face, and Nate is not having it at all. @I got lucky with the popcorn, and I’m making a steamed corn cake with brown butter ice cream and caramel corn crumble. @I see the other people with popcorn, and there’s Jo and Tadashi. @Tadashi is my biggest competitor. @I’m nervous, but trying my best not to show it.

Henry: @I like working with Kira because she’s got her head on straight. @Then I have Amanda next to me, and she’s also a strong cook. @It’s just dawning on me how strong the people in this season really are.

Amanda: @Kira was a runner-up, and so were Phung and Tadashi. @So they should be the ones to beat. @But I thought that about Rose, and she got sent home. @I honestly think that everyone here is a strong competitor, but I want to be the best. @I still have the three dishes I wanted to make in that challenge running through my head. @It’s about time for me to cook those in this season’s final challenge.

Jessica: Time’s up!

Kira: @I think that my dessert looks cute. @But is cute going to cut it? @I really don’t know. @I’m feeling nervous.

Jessica: Your judges are:

Frank Torres

Erwin Ko

Aster Walker

Jessica: Let’s start with the dishes by Phung, Karen, and Fanny!

Phung – hot dog ice cream with chocolate-stout bread pudding

Karen – hot dog pate on toasted hot dog bun crostini with pickles and mostarda

Fanny – hunters stew with grilled hot dog bun

Frank: Phung’s ice cream tasted amazing. I honestly was astounded by her flavor profiles. She got meat into her dessert and it worked. I’m just blown away right now.

Erwin: Karen’s concept was really clever, but the flavor in the pate was bland, and the texture was grainy. It made the dish unpleasant.

Aster: Fanny hid the hotdog with other meats, and in this case, that worked. I actually ate the entire dish. It was delicious.
Jessica: Next we have the dishes by Tadashi, Jo, and Nate!

Tadashi – corn-uni soup with poached prawns and grilled leeks

Jo – popcorn crusted mahi mahi tacos with lime-corn-chili salsa

Nate – popcorn shrimp with corn congee and corn soy

Aster: The soup Tadashi prepared was gorgeous. The presentation was there and so were the flavors. I wanted more of the corn, but it was by far the best thing I’ve tried.

Erwin: Jo’s dish description sounded good, but the thing I struggled with was the actual fish. It was dry and crumbled in my mouth. It was disappointing.

Frank: Nate’s congee was tasty. I felt like he captured different textures of the popcorn, and that appealed to me.

Jessica: Finally, the dishes by Kira and Justin!

Kira – corn cake, brown butter ice cream, caramel corn crumble

Justin – pretzel and squid ink pasta

Erwin: Kira’s cake was delicious and I liked her ice cream. The crumble was a bit clunky and needed to be chopped more, but overall, it tasted good.

Frank: Justin’s pasta was well prepared but the ingredient became a complete afterthought. I did not feel like the pretzels necessarily enhanced the dish in any way.

Jessica: So can we decide on who won and who is going home?

Aster: We can.

In walks Phung, Fanny, and Tadashi.

Jessica: Tonight… the three of you impressed the judges, and one of you is going to be the winner!

Frank: Fanny, your stew was delicious. The hot dog accented the other meats and you using the bun as a crostini, it all worked together. Tadashi, your flavors were incredible and I just fell in love with the dish, even though popcorn was only used in the soup. Phung, you blew us away with that ice cream, and you embraced hot dogs and pretzels, so we just really loved it.

Jessica: Aster, please announce the winner.

Aster: Three great dishes, but the one that hit the challenge and impressed us the most was prepared by…. Phung.

Jessica: Congratulations, Phung!

Phung: About fucking time! @I finally won a challenge! @I’m so angry that it was over cooking concession stand shit like fucking hotdogs and pretzels but at least it’s a win.

Aster: Tadashi, had you used the popcorn in at least one more way, you would have won this challenge. Phung just embraced the criteria of it that much more.

Jessica: The three of you are safe and can return to the stew room.

Phung: I won! I fucking won!~

Tadashi: @It sucks to hear that, but I know where I need to improve moving forward. @Phung’s definitely  the biggest threat.

Fanny: @I knew Phung was a threat. @She won eight challenges in her season. @I definitely need to keep an eye on her.

Phung, Tadashi, and Fanny leave.

In walks Karen, Jo, and Justin.

Jessica: Unfortunately, one of you is going home tonight.

Aster: Karen, the pate was just bland and grainy. Two things you definitely don’t want that to be.

Karen: Oh, really? @I’m shocked that I underseasoned it. @I thought that the hot dogs would be salty enough on their own, but I was wrong.

Erwin: Jo, the dish’s description had us all salivating. It sounded so good. But you messed up on the mahi mahi, and it was dry and unpleasant.

Jo: @I’m nervous that I’m going home. @I just screwed up too much on the dish.

Frank: Justin, your pasta was delicious and the squid was cooked beautifully. But it was obvious that you barely tried to incorporate the pretzels into your dish. If you removed the pretzels, the dish would have been better. At that point, you should’ve realized that maybe you need a different concept.

Justin: @I think I might be the one going home tonight. @They hated my concept and it just sucks to hear that.

Jessica: It’s unfortunate because all three of you were finalists. But the one going home tonight is… Karen. Please return to the kitchen and leave.
Karen: Thank you. @I’m feeling disappointed and depressed. @Pate, something so classically European, it’s what I’m going home on. @I’m proud of myself for getting so far the first time around. @I’m proud of myself for even coming back. @But the early elimination, I will need time to digest that. @It sucks. @I did not come back to the competition just to get sent home in the second elimination.

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Warrior Chef 3: Round 7

Justin: @Walking into the kitchen today, I’m feeling good. @The final five. @Let’s do it.

Michele: Hi, everyone! So today’s creativity challenge is something you want to win. The winner will automatically secure a spot in our finale in New Orleans!

Henry: @I’ve made it this far, but Kira, Phung, Justin, and Lauren are strong competition. @If I can beat them for a spot in the finale, then I have a good chance to win the title and be Warrior Chef.

Michele: For this challenge, you have 30 minutes to prepare a dish using… onions. And your time starts now!

Lauren: @I’m not the biggest fan of using onions to be honest. @I’m going to make a deep fried onion ring with an onion-dried mushroom broth. @I think it’s going to be super simple, but I want the onion to be the focus of the flavors.

Phung: @I love my onions. @I’m going to make a pickled onion salad with a scallion pancake. @To make my pancake, I’m going to start with flour and water, then then layer it with oil and wilted scallions. @I think it’ll be bomb.

Justin: @For my dish, I’m preparing a grilled onion broth with fried onions and a beef tortellini. @I’m going to dust the onions in mochiko flour and then fry those for a garnish on top of my dish.

Kira: @I’m debating on what to do with my dish. @I finally decide on a scallion salad with grilled skirt steak and an onion puree. @I’m hoping that the flavors will be good together, but the thing about onions is that they’re strong on their own. @I don’t want the dish to lose too much balance to that.

Henry: @I’m going to prepare a caramelized onion jam to go with a seared ribeye and then an onion jus with parmesan flaked into it. @I’m feeling good about the dish because it’s got everything I want in an onion dish in it. @There’s caramelized onions, and a delicious sauce with them.

Michele: Time’s up!

Kira: @I’m not quite sure how the dish will stack up, because the onions were really strong and my palate feels overwhelmed.

Michele: Your judge is Warrior Chef critic, Aster Walker!

Aster: Hi, everyone! I’m excited to taste your dishes tonight.

Michele and Aster taste the dishes.

Michele: So Aster, who failed to impress you tonight?

Aster: Kira, the onion flavor was too overwhelming. I lost the steak to the onion salad and puree. Phung, the scallion pancake was raw in the center. You didn’t have enough time to execute it properly.

Phung: @I’m pissed. @I wanted to win the challenge and it was my challenge to lose. @It sucks so much!

Michele: And who impressed you?

Aster: Justin, the tortellini were well made and the onions were fried beautifully. Lauren, your broth was perfectly executed. That broth had a lot of beautiful flavors in it. Tonight, the better dish was prepared by…. Justin.

Michele: Congratulations, Justin! You won the creativity challenge and you’re guaranteed a spot in the finale!

Justin: Thank you. @Not having to cook in the elimination challenge feels good. @I can just kick back and relax.

Justin leaves the room.

Michele: And now for the elimination challenge! This challenge is simple. You have an hour to prepare a dish based on your journey in the competition thus far. And your time starts now!

Phung: @I’m pissed. @I’ve been inconsistently performing in these challenges. @But I have six challenge wins so far, and that’s nothing to scoff at. @I’m preparing another banh mi. @With the baguette made from scratch. @That’s how legit I am going to be. @Keeping it simple, Vietnamese, and sassy as fuck. @That’s how I won those six challenges, and that’s why I’m going to win this next challenge. @Nobody is going to ever end the Phung Dynasty. @This is my season. @I’m doing pork this time, using pork belly and pork liver, because I did beef last time I made this.

Lauren: @Phung is making another baguette from scratch, and I know that’s going to be a surefire winner on her part. @I need to step it up. @I’m preparing caramel-miso doughnuts with a red bean ice cream and black sesame panna cotta. @I’m hoping that Phung gets sent home, because she’s super strong competition, but realistically, I need to just focus on my own food and cook it to the best of my ability. @My dish is based on my love of baking, and how I won the first elimination challenge with an Asian fusion dessert. @I want to win this one with that same kind of dish.

Kira: @Everyone wants Phung to go home at this point. @She’s extremely tough competition and none of us want to face off against her in the finale. @For my dish, I’m making a confit of ocean trout with black trumpet mushrooms, ramp-spring pea puree, and a lemon-poppyseed butter. @I’ve been cooking fine dining in almost every challenge, and I want to keep doing that to bring me a win, and to guarantee a spot in the finale tomorrow.

Henry: @Phung, Lauren, and Kira are all tough, tough competition. @But if even one of them slips up, then I can swoop in and take the challenge. @I haven’t won a challenge yet, but my journey has been me making pretty solid dishes overall. @I’m making a grilled chicken thigh with a chicken jus, parsnip puree, and fried parsnip chips. @I’m hoping that this will be winner, winner, chicken dinner for me tonight.

Phung: @I honestly hope that Lauren gets eliminated tonight, because she’s got more confidence in her cooking than Kira does. @Kira is a strong cook, but she still doesn’t quite have the soul to be a real chef, so I know I can take down Kira.

Justin: @I’m just sitting there, watching them cook. @Kira’s concept sounds really nice, but I feel like she needs to execute it well because the story isn’t there. @Henry’s dish sounds pretty boring. @He might be going home because he’s going with something that shows little risk. @Lauren’s dessert is ambitious but if she nails it, then she’ll win. @And Phung’s dish, I’d expect her to go home on making a baguette from scratch in an hour but she’s done that before, so she probably will be fine, if not win.

Lauren: @Kira and I get along fine because she’s very chill. @Phung, just too loud. @I can’t sometimes with her.

Phung: *to Henry* Go fuck yourself! @Henry tried to open the oven, but I needed it closed for my baguette. Use the one next to it, you fucking idiot.

Henry: @Only one oven was preheated to the right temp, and Phung’s using it. @I need to think fast, because I need the oven for my chicken. @I decide to drop it into the deep frier to finish it, because I’m running out of time.

Kira: @Henry is deep frying his par-cooked chicken, and I just think that’s the dumbest thing you can do with an uncoated piece of chicken. @It’s going to be tough and dry.

Michele: Time’s up!

Phung: This is the shit! @I’m confident that my banh mi will be epic.

Michele: Your judges are:

Chelia Van Buren

Thyme De Lys

Kierra Johnson

Michele: Let’s start with Kira’s dish!

-confit ocean trout, ramp-spring pea puree, black trumpet mushrooms, lemon butter

Thyme: Her presentation was gorgeous and I loved the cook on my trout. The puree had a velvety texture. But the lemon butter was bland.

Chelia: I didn’t particularly care for the poppyseed in the butter sauce. The mushrooms for me were too cooked, and they lost their integrity.

Michele: Next is Phung’s dish!

-homemade pork banh mi

Thyme: I wasn’t sure what to expect. But the fact she made her own bread from scratch, I almost forgot she made it, because it was that robust. I’m just wowed by that.

Kierra: Her baguette alone, I could eat this for breakfast for the rest of my life. She nailed the filling too. The vinaigrette, aioli, and the seared pork belly, it was magical.

Michele: And now we have Henry’s dish!

-fried chicken thigh, parsnip puree and chip, chicken jus

Chelia: I’m in love with his puree and his sauce. The chip was cooked nicely, and had a good crunch. The seasoning on the dish was nice.

Kierra: The chicken was the biggest issue I had with my dish. It was dry, stringy, leathery, I just couldn’t eat it.

Michele: And finally, Lauren’s dessert.

-caramel-miso doughnuts with red bean ice cream and black sesame panna cotta

Thyme: I normally hate red bean and miso, but she put both of them together in a dessert, and they worked. I’m really in love with her dish.

Kierra: The doughnuts alone were fluffy, airy, light, and the panna cotta was well executed. Her dessert had everything you needed in a successful dish.

Michele: So can we decide on who our final four are?

Thyme: Yes.

In walks Henry, Phung, Kira, and Lauren.

Michele: Tonight, it was split down the line. Two of you impressed us, and one of you is going home. Kira, Henry, the judges agreed that the two of you had the most mistakes in your dishes, and one of you is going home tonight.

Thyme: Kira, your mushrooms were overcooked and the lemon sauce with the poppyseed was cumbersome and bland.

Kierra: Henry, the chicken was tough and stringy. We couldn’t really even eat it.

Michele: Phung and Lauren, that means that the two of you are the top two in this.

Kierra: It was a close call between both dishes to be honest. Phung, your baguette was a stellar component and it was the most ballsy thing I saw today. However, you prepared banh mi in another challenge and already won with it then, so we cannot award you the win tonight. Lauren, your dessert showed harmony, and as a dessert lover myself, I have to give you the win.

Michele: Congratulations, Lauren, you won the elimination challenge! Both of you will be joining Justin in the finale!

Phung: Okay. @I lost to Lauren? @Are you kidding me? @I deserved the win. @Fuck.

Lauren and Phung leave.

Michele: Kira, Henry, one of you is going home. The person joining Justin, Lauren, and Phung in the finale is…. Kira. Henry, please return to the kitchen and leave.

Henry: Okay. @I’m feeling deflated going home this close to the finale. @I wanted to go all the way to the end and win Warrior Chef but I didn’t get to. @God damn it.

Kira: @Being able to earn my place in the finale is great, but now I’m the underdog. @I need to prove myself in the finale or else nobody is going to take me seriously.

Warrior Chef 3: Round 5

Phung: @Walking into the kitchen, I’m glad that I was able to establish dominance. @The Phung Dynasty continues! @But Jaenice going home sucks. @She was funny and I really liked having her around. @James shall rue the day he sent her packing.

Justin: @I’m annoyed that I’ve been sort of coasting by. @I really want to win tonight’s challenges and just prove to the other contestants that I am the best one here.

Cherry: @I’m feeling ready to win the competition. @It’s a huge opportunity for me to really prove that being a former pot head isn’t going to stop me from being successful in my future.

Michele: Hi, everyone! So for tonight’s creativity challenge, you’ll need to prepare a dish worthy of a Michelin star. Unfortunately, after this challenge, somebody will be sent home. This is a sudden death challenge!

Lauren: @The moment she says sudden death, I am freaking out internally. @I don’t want to get sent home. @Not this way.

Phung: @I’m not worried. @I will crush it tonight.

Michele: You have 45 minutes, your time starts now!

Kira: @I’m excited for this challenge, because I know I can nail this one. @If I can win this challenge, then I win three in a row, and that’s exciting. @For my dish, I’m doing smoked quail with a taro mousseline, fried mustard seed, and goji berry compote. @It’s going to be Asian-French fusion, which I know so many high-end restaurants do.

Lauren: @I decide to prepare soft shell crabs with an orange-fennel salad. @I’m keeping the dish super simple. @So far, in this competition, Phung, Kira, and I have been trading wins, so I would love to just keep winning challenges.

Phung: @Lauren’s not my main competition. @Kira, she’s a threat. @Justin, he’s potentially a threat, but I can take him down in the long run. @I decide to make a chawanmushi, in honor of my soul sister, Jaenice. @I miss her greatly, but in the Phung Dynasty, there will be casualties.

James: @I’m going to make a apple cake with vanilla ice cream. @I’m making a dessert because it’ll be something that everyone will be shocked by that. @If I can even win one challenge at this point, it’ll show everyone here that I am a strong contender and that I can cook sweet or savory.

Henry: @I’m nervous about this challenge because I’m not super into the whole fine-dining genre. @I’m preparing a seared scallop with beetroot puree and a yogurt coulis with coconut. @I’m feeling great about this dish, because it’ll show a lot of finesse. @Scallops are super fancy, right?

Justin: @I’m preparing a kale tortellini with brown butter and crispy pancetta. @I’m keeping the dish simple, but I’m hoping that making a filled pasta in 45 minutes shows that I am a skilled and talented chef in this competition.

Michele: Time’s up!

Lauren: @I’m stepping back from my station feeling meh about my dish. @I see the others, and we have some seriously good looking dishes up there tonight.

Michele: Your judge is Warrior Chef house critic, Lotte Amazo!
Lotte: Hi, everyone. As a food critic, I love seeing how far chefs can take their food. Let’s see if anyone here is worthy of a Michelin star.

Lotte and Michele taste the dishes.

Michele: So Lotte, who managed to impress you the most?

Lotte: Kira, you made a really delicious quail dish and I was impressed by your techniques. Henry, the scallop was simple, but well executed. Your presentation was one of my favorites. And Justin. The tortellini was wrapped, filled, and cooked to perfection. I really enjoyed that a lot.

Michele: And your winner?

Lotte: I think it was a hard choice, but in the end, Kira, you made my favorite dish.

Michele: Congratulations, Kira! You won immunity going into the elimination challenge!

Kira: Thank you. @I’m just relieved to not be on the bottom. @I don’t know what to expect, but now I have immunity, and I’m guaranteed a spot in the final six.

Justin: @I’m so annoyed that Kira won. @Can I ever win a damn challenge? @At this point, I’m convinced that I’m going to be sent home next, because it seems everyone who is the bridesmaid in these challenges goes home.

Michele: And Lotte, who is on the bottom?

Lotte: James, the apple cake wasn’t baked enough. And Phung. Your chawanmushi was scrambled and just not refined at all.

Phung: @Crap. @I’m on the bottom and up for elimination. @What even is this?

Michele: So for the sudden death challenge, Phung and James, you must prepare a high-end canape. You have just 25 minutes, your time starts now!

Phung: @I need redemption. @I’m making the chawanmushi with uni and shiitake mushrooms, and this time, I’m making it in the tiny Chinese soup spoons. @I’m monitoring the steamer like a hawk, because I am not going home on a fucking egg custard, and especially not going home against James.
James: @I have the chance to knock Phung out of the competition, so bring it on. @I’m making a harissa rubbed prosciutto with deep fried fig and melted honey-goat cheese. @Phung is one of the biggest contenders for the title, and I want to eliminate her. @I need to beat her if I want to win the title anyways.

Lauren: @I am keeping my fingers crossed that Phung gets sent home. @As much as I love her sass, she’s a major, major threat, and her getting eliminated means that a huge obstacle is out of the way.

Henry: @I think everyone wants Phung out. @She’s really rude, and she’s a strong cook, so it’s just two more reasons why people don’t necessarily warm up to her. @If James does eliminate Phung, then we will all be really happy.

Phung: @I check my custards, and they are perfect. @I’m feeling great about my canapes. @I know how to make a perfect dish and it’ll show. @My food is strong, bold, and I will knock people out, one by one.

James: @I’m feeling really good about the deep fried fig. @My dish is possibly the best thing I put up in this entire competition. @Phung better watch out, because everyone always roots for the underdog.

Michele: Time’s up! Step away from your stations.

James: @Phung made the chawanmushi again, so I know I can beat her now.

Michele and Lotte taste James and Phung’s dishes.

Michele: Lotte, how did they do?

Lotte: Phung, you prepared the same dish, but this one was delicious and smooth. I really loved your dish. James, the fig was a surprisingly delicious addition, and the harissa and prosciutto was great. The goat cheese was a nice touch as well.

James: @I’m feeling good. @Phung, here’s the door.

Lotte: Overall, it came down to the main challenge. Who prepared a canape. Both of you served good food, but the challenge required it to be a canape. James, you served me something a little larger than that, and for that sole reason, you’re going home.

Michele: James, please return to the kitchen and leave.

Phung: *to James* You deserved it. This was for Jaenice, you ass!

James: Crap. Okay. @I wasn’t expecting that. @I thought I had Phung beat. @That’s really dumb that I’m going out on a technicality. @I really wanted to prove that I can cook good food, and it sucks, because I just stumbled slightly and failed.

James leaves the kitchen.

Phung: @And just like that, there were only seven left. @I’m feeling great.

Michele: And now it’s time for the elimination challenge!

A cart is wheeled in, carrying two whole lambs.

Cherry: @I just see the whole lambs and all I can think is… whaaaat? @We have to cook with these monsters?

Lauren: @I’m feeling a little nervous about having to butcher these lambs, because I don’t do that.

Justin: @I see the whole lambs and I’m ecstatic. @I actually know how to butcher the lambs, so I know that this is my challenge to really step up and shine.

Kira: @I know how to butcher lamb, so this won’t be hard. @I see some of the other cooks around the room, and they’re looking really nervous.

Michele: You have an hour to prepare your own dish using parts from this whole lamb. And your time starts now!

Phung: @I run up and grab an entire lamb for myself. @I’m not going to try sharing the lamb and wasting time helping other people butcher it.

Lauren: @Phung grabs an entire lamb and my jaw hits the floor. @Seriously? @You don’t need the whole lamb for yourself.

Justin: @Kira and I start breaking down the other lamb, because nobody else knows how to do it, and while we are fabricating it, I’m just thinking about what I can make from it. @Since Kira and I volunteered to do it, everyone agrees that we get first pick on which part we want to use.

Kira: @For my dish, I’m going to prepare a grilled lamb chop with red wine and grape jus and gruyere mashed potatoes. @I’m keeping the dish super simple, because the time it’s taking to break down the lamb, I need to simplify the dish and focus on making sure I execute.

Justin: @I’m making a lamb ragout with paparadelle, black garlic, and fire roasted tomatoes. @It’s going to be awesome, because I just take the lamb scraps and utilize those in my dish.

Lauren: @Justin hands me the lamb leg, which is what I was hoping for. @I’m making a braised lamb leg with grilled cabbage slaw and spicy tomato relish. @I know that lamb loves smoke and heat, those I’m going with that.

Cherry: @So for my dish tonight, I’m going to be utilizing the lamb shank. @I’m making lamb shank with rice cakes and lamb broth. @I’m going to utilize the rice cakes from my Cantonese heritage to make a delicious texture the judges won’t expect.

Henry: @I decide on making a crepe with shaved lamb cheek and grilled mushrooms and frisee with harissa yogurt. @I’m going to take a risk here and do something out of the box. @Phung stealing the whole lamb for herself, it was selfish, and I hope she gets eliminated for it.

Gabe: @I’m using the belly. @I’m doing a braised lamb belly with mint-chili chutney and a corn puree. @Braising the lamb belly will be the risk I am taking here, but I know that I can pull that off.

Phung: @For my dish tonight, I’m doing a grilled lamb chop and lamb tongue, lamb carpaccio, Vietnamese coffee jus, caramelized lamb belly, and a ramp pancake. @I’m taking on a lot at once because I know I can execute it all flawlessly. @The advantage to having my own lamb is that I can use it all and showcase different textures.

Michele: Time’s up!

Lauren: @I’m feeling good about this challenge. @Phung might have tried to selfishly hog an entire lamb to herself, but my dish came out like how I wanted it to.

Michele: Your judges are:

Erwin Ko

Aster Walker

Miriam Adjanti

Michele: Let’s start with the dishes by Justin and Kira first!

Justin – lamb ragout with paparadelle, black garlic, and fire roasted tomatoes

Kira – grilled lamb chop with red wine and grape jus and gruyere mashed potatoes

Aster: The lamb ragout was delicious! The flavor he developed in the time he had and the fact that he utilized the off cuts for the lamb to prepare it, it was genius.

Miriam: Kira also delivered on a simple but well-done dish. The chop was butchered perfectly and I enjoyed her sauce and the puree was perfect. Smooth, velvety, but creamy. I had no complaints.

Michele: And next are the dishes by Phung and Lauren!

Phung – grilled chop, tongue, carpaccio, Vietnamese coffee, crispy belly, ramp pancake

Lauren – braised lamb leg with grilled cabbage slaw and spicy tomato relish

Erwin: The chop Phung prepared was undercooked. I appreciate that she was being ambitious, serving us lamb four different ways, but she didn’t really nail any single execution perfectly. I did enjoy her pancake and the Vietnamese coffee jus a lot.

Miriam: Lauren braised that lamb leg nicely and I was surprised by how much I liked the combination of grilled cabbage and spicy tomato with the braised lamb. The flavors of her dish came together.

Michele: Finally, the dishes by Gabe and Cherry!

Gabe – braised lamb belly with mint-chili chutney and corn puree

Cherry – lamb shank with rice cakes and lamb broth

Aster: Gabe braised his lamb belly nicely and I liked the chutney a lot. The corn puree just confused me. I didn’t really know where it belonged on the plate, because it was so bland and uninteresting compared to the rest of his dish.

Erwin: Cherry cooked her lamb shank nicely. The broth, I couldn’t even get to it because of how much rice cake she put in proportion. Eating her dish was like eating a bowl of glue and mud. I didn’t like it at all.

Michele: So can we crown a winner and decide who is going home?
Aster: We can.

In walks Justin, Kira, and Lauren.

Michele: Tonight, the three of you prepared the judges’ favorite dishes!

Aster: Justin and Kira, both of you did well with breaking down the lamb and your dishes were both well made. Lauren, the dish had great flavors and you surprised us with that grilled cabbage.

Michele: Aster, please announce the winner.

Aster: It came down to Lauren and Justin’s dishes for me. And the best dish belonged to… Justin.

Michele: Congratulations, Justin! You won the elimination challenge!

Justin: Thank you! @I won my first challenge ever and it feels good! @I’m definitely going to make that lamb ragout again when I open up my restaurant.

The top three leave.

In walks Phung and Cherry.
Michele: Tonight, both of you had glaring technical errors and one of you is going to be sent home.

Erwin: Phung, you didn’t deliver on any of your four lamb components. The chop was undercooked, the tongue and carpaccio were underseasoned, and you didn’t render out enough fat from the belly. We did enjoy your sauce and the pancake a lot, however.

Miriam: Cherry, the lamb shank was braised beautifully but the broth was nonexistent. The rest of your dish was basically taken over by your rice cakes, which weren’t good.

Cherry: Shit. @I’m feeling like I’m screwed at this point. @But they hated Phung’s lamb, so there’s hope for me.

Phung: @Cherry has been decently strong this season, but I know I can take her down. @Just send her on her way already.

Michele: Cherry, please return to the kitchen and leave.

Cherry: Thank you. *to Phung* Congratulations. @I’m going home tonight and it fucking sucks. @I didn’t think I’d be out this early. @I felt like with each challenge, I was getting stronger, and I didn’t quite reach my potential yet.

Warrior Chef 3: Round 4

Lauren: @I’m walking into the kitchen feeling great tonight. @Cherry and I somehow won the challenge, and I am looking forward to the next challenge!

Gabe: @I’m still shocked that Taylor got sent home. @He seemed to be one of the more confident cooks, but I guess he skated under the radar too long and he became forgettable. @I haven’t been on top since the first elimination, so I need to step it up.

Kira: @Lauren swept the last round and I honestly don’t know what to think anymore. @I expected Taylor and Justin to be my biggest competition, but Lauren, Jaenice, and Phung are all coming out of nowhere with really good food. @You definitely can’t judge a book by it’s cover in this competition.

Michele: Welcome back, everyone. So for the challenge tonight, we want you guys to prepare a dessert using…..

A cart is wheeled in, carrying pistachios.

Phung: Oh lord. @Pistachios? @Really? @And they aren’t shelled. @Fuck me.

Gabe: @None of them are shelled and it’s a nightmare even looking at them. @We are all going to easily lose 30 minutes doing mise en place.

Michele: So you have 45 minutes to make a pistachio dessert, time starts now!

Kira: @I grab a ton of the pistachios, and I’m thinking about what I can do so that I don’t have to shell them. @I’m making a pistachio infused vanilla ice cream and pistachio crumble with a rum caramel sauce. @Because I’m infusing the pistachios into my milk, I don’t need to shell those, so I only need a couple for the crumble. @I hope that the pistachio comes through enough.

Lauren: @I’m preparing a pistachio crusted cheesecake with honey-ricotta filling and orange marmalade. @I’m keeping the execution simple, because the cheesecake is a rare cheesecake that thickens by setting, not cooking. @My competition is pretty tough. @Phung, she’s intense. @But this is a baking challenge, and I need to continue proving myself to everyone that I am a well-rounded cook worthy of the title.

James: @I’m making a pistachio doughnut. @I’m feeling good about making the doughnuts. @I’m going to blend up the pistachios and then crust the doughnuts in that and then it’ll be delicious. @In the last challenge, Phung wouldn’t let me help, and that’s why we were on the bottom. @Tonight, this is going to be my food.

Gabe: @I’m not quite sure what to do. @I decide finally on a pistachio tart with a coffee-molasses filling. @I’m going to top the dish with whipped ricotta cheese. @I’m hoping that the pistachios will really work well with that. @I chose coffee and molasses because I think that the earthy notes of both will compliment the nut very well.

Justin: @I’m not sure what to do with the pistachios. @I give it some thought, and I finally decide on baklava cannoli. @But then I see that Lauren and Gabe are both using ricotta with pistachio as well, so I grab the goat cheese instead, because I want mine to stand apart from their desserts.

Phung: @Back off, bitches, I’m going to win this challenge. @I’m making a pistachio milk infused crepe with caramel braised pistachios, pistachio-honey ice cream, and pistachio crumble. @I know that I can nail this dish tonight and shine bright like a Phungmond. @I’m literally smashing these dumb nuts with pans just to get them open.

Jaenice: @I love a good pistachio. @I’m making a pistachio shortcake with blueberries, fresh cream, and lemon curd. @I’m feeling good about using the pistachio in just the shortcake and nowhere else. @Phung, she’s next to me smashing the living Jesus out of her nuts. @She’s going to bust a nut with her crazy bitch attitude. @Got to love me some crazy fat Vietnamese psycho.

Kira: @I’m going to make a peach and pistachio parfait with pistachio fritters and homemade creme fraiche. @I’m going to push myself and make the best thing I can in the time allotted. @The creme fraiche, I’m making using buttermilk, heavy cream, a cheese cloth, and a sous-vide machine. @After the last challenge, I really want to prove that I am not a weak link in the competition.

Michele: Time’s up!

Cherry: @We still have nine cooks, and I really want to prove to these guys that

Michele: Your judge is pastry lover and house critic, Kierra Johnston!

Kierra: Hi, everyone. I love desserts, and I love pistachios, so I’m expecting to be blown away tonight!

Kierra and Michele taste the dishes.

Michele: So Kierra, who failed to impress you?

Kierra: James, you ground the pistachios, shells and all, into the dish and that ate chalky and scratchy. And how did you make the doughnuts exactly?

James: I deep fried pizza dough.

Kierra: Yeah, that’s not going to cut it here. They were dense and rough.

Jaenice: @All of these dumb bitches trying to deep fry food against me? @Yeah, no, they stupid. @So fucking dumb. @I can’t even with this white bread.

Kierra: Gabe, the filling of your tart was acrid and bitter. Justin, the goat cheese overwhelmed my palate.

Justin: @I’m on the bottom and that sucks. @I really wanted to do better than that.

Jaenice: @Tsk, tsk. @Nobody seems to know how to make good baklava this season.

Kierra: For my favorites, Kira, you prepared a really complex parfait in just 45 minutes, and that blew me away. Phung, the braised pistachios were unusual, but it showed the pistachios in a way nobody else did. They were meaty, almost like an apricot. I liked that. And Jaenice, the shortcake was a clever application for the pistachio and I just loved your flavors overall. It was simple, but really well executed.

Jaenice: @I keep coming in second and I want to be number one. @I’m here to win.

Phung: @I’m on top, because I am the best cook here and nobody can take that right away from me.

Kierra: The best dish belonged to… Kira.

Michele: Congratulations, Kira! You got immunity and an advantage going into the elimination challenge!

Kira: Awesome! Thank you. @Getting immunity and an advantage is great. @I’m hoping that I can use that to knock off somebody who could be a major threat down the line.

Michele: Now for the elimination challenge! Kira, you have a huge advantage and that is you get to decide two people who you want to work with for the elimination challenge.

Kira: @I have immunity, so I know even if this backfires, I’m still not going home. I’m going to choose Phung and Lauren. @My logic there is that Phung is a strong cook, so that might set us up to win. @But if Phung tanks like she did with the last team challenge, she’s probably going home. @Lauren is a strong cook too, so if Phung isn’t going home, then at least Lauren would, worst case scenario. @I’m aiming to either knock out somebody weak, but worst case, somebody strong still goes home.

Lauren: @I’m not sure what’s going through Kira’s head, but I’m feeling nervous about being on a team with Phung. @Phung and Kira have both proven that they struggle in team challenges. @I don’t want to be on the bottom in this challenge with them, especially when Kira has immunity.

Michele: Everyone else, please draw knives!

Jaenice – 2

James – 2

Gabe – 2

Cherry – 3

Justin – 3

Henry – 3

Cherry: @I’m with Henry and Justin, and I’m disappointed. @I was hoping to be with Jaenice, because the two of us could probably stand up to Kira’s team.

Jaenice: @I’m with Gabe and James, and they’re both useless to me. @I’m feeling like I’m screwed tonight.

Michele: So tonight, you’ll be working in teams of three, and you’ll prepare two dishes. One is sweet, the other is savory. On top of that, you’ll have an assigned protein for your savory course, and an assigned fruit for the dessert.

A cart is wheeled in, carrying boar, venison, monkfish, figs, bananas, and apples

Michele: Kira, you get to choose the proteins and fruits for everyone.

Kira: We’ll take the monkfish and apples. I’ll give Team 2 the venison and bananas. And Team 3 will get the boar and peaches.

Jaenice: @We have venison and bananas. @I’m confident that we can nail our dishes tonight, so long as James and Gabe listen to me.

Cherry: @Never touched boar, and I don’t really like figs. @This is disgusting.

Michele: Just 1 hour to prepare two dishes, time starts now!

Kira: *to Phung and Lauren* So Lauren, I want you working with my on the savory dish. Phung, you need to do the dessert, okay? @Already, I know that with Phung, she’s not a team player, so I’m going to stick her alone on the dessert, and that’ll be the most productive way to handle this situation.

Phung: @I’m feeling good about doing the apple dessert. @I’m making a honeysuckle apple sorbet, financier with caramel poached apples, and apple cider spheres. @Kira is a strong competitor, but she has immunity, so I really need to just focus on winning.

Kira: @Lauren and I agree to prepare a leek smoked monkfish with monkfish liver butter, capers, and coconut espuma. @I think Lauren, Phung, and I are a strong team because Lauren and I know to let Phung do her own thing, and she will succeed that way if we really do enable her.

Cherry: @I’m with Justin and Henry, and they’re both decent cooks. @Justin is going to handle the fig dessert, and prepare a fig-hazelnut tart with goat cheese ice cream. @That sounds yummy, and something I would want to eat that.

Henry: @Cherry and I are going to handle the boar dish. @It’s going to be a roasted boar chop with polenta and wilted kale with some chilies sprinkled in there for a kick. @I really want to win the title because I want to have my own career that does not rely on going to college. @I hate school, and the culinary industry is the only one where I don’t really need a college diploma to thrive in.

Justin: @Working with Henry and Cherry is interesting. @Neither of them are really bad cooks, but I’d rather be in that team with Kira, because Kira and I would work well together. @For my tart, I’m making a hazelnut frangipan for the filling, with some figs baked directly in there as well. @The ice cream, a bit of balsamic, and the garnish is figs macerated in olive oil.

Jaenice: @I’m making banana pudding. @Right off the bat, I need to make myself some delicious banana pudding to just get through the fucking challenge. @But I’m with Gabe and James. @So for the venison dish, we are making barbecued venison. @Gabe is going to handle the cooking of it while James does the garnishes.

Gabe: @Jaenice is handling the dry rub on the venison, and I’m going to be searing and resting that and make a sauce. @Making Southern food is going to be an interesting challenge for me, because I don’t really do that.

James: @Jaenice is a strong cook and she’s been only on the top of challenges. @I think that it’s going to be an uphill battle for me. @I’m making mashed potatoes, grilled corn, and some wilted collards for our dish. @I’m ready to get some redemption and win the challenge.

Michele: Time’s up! Step away from your dishes!

Cherry: @I see the other dishes, and I’m not too impressed. @I think I’m going to make it into the next round, for sure.

Michele: Your judges are:

Erwin Ko

Max Hudson

Chelia Van Buren

Michele: Let’s start with Kira, Phung, and Lauren’s dish!

-leek smoked monkfish with monkfish liver butter, capers, and coconut espuma

-honeysuckle apple sorbet, financier, caramel poached apples, and apple cider spheres

Max: The leek smoked monkfish. Wow. That was already a huge home run. The fact that they incorporated the liver into the dish was really amazing. I was impressed.

Chelia: The usage of the monkfish parts was clever. The flavors balanced out and I’m really happy with that.

Erwin: The dessert was incredible. The sorbet, financier with the apples baked into it, and the little bubbles of cider, I was wowed.

Michele: And next are the dishes by Cherry, Justin, and Henry!

-roasted boar chops, polenta, chili kale

-fig-hazelnut tart with goat cheese ice cream

Chelia: The boar was cooked nicely and I liked the texture of the polenta. The chili infused kale had a great amount of kick and flavor to it.

Erwin: The tart was beautifully crafted and I liked the ice cream a lot too. Both dishes were pretty solid dishes.

Max: I think that the dessert was flawlessly executed with so many different textures of the fig. But for the boar, I’m wishing that they incorporated more boar into there.

Michele: And finally, the dishes by Jaenice, James, and Gabe!

-dry rubbed venison, mashed potatoes, corn, and wilted collards

-banana pudding

Max: The venison was cooked perfectly and I really liked the seasoning on it and the other garnishes. But there was too much on a plate.

Erwin: The venison wasn’t seasoned properly. The dry rub just lacked salt, and that’s what I’m missing here.

Chelia: The banana pudding, it was way too pedestrian. They could have done so much more. The flavor was nice, but that’s really just it.

Michele: So can we decide on which team is on the bottom and which team won?

Chelia: We can.

In walks Kira, Phung, Lauren, Cherry, Henry, and Justin.

Michele: Tonight, the judges agreed that you were the two teams that wound up on top of the elimination challenge!

Cherry: @Being on top is amazing, because I know I am a strong contender for the title now. @This year is my year.

Michele: Judges?

Max: Henry, Justin, and Cherry, you three put up a delicious dessert and the boar with the chili was a clever combination.

Chelia: Phung, Lauren, and Kira, that monkfish dish was impeccably done. Your dessert was complex and really inventive.

Michele: Erwin, please announce the winning team tonight.

Erwin: It was a really tough decision, but the best two dishes were made by… Kira, Phung, and Lauren.

Michele: Congratulations, you three! You won the elimination challenge!

Kira: @We won! @I finally proved that I am not a bad luck charm in these team challenges. @Winning, it feels amazing.

The top six leave.

In walks Jaenice, James, and Gabe.

Michele: Unfortunately, the three of you are on the bottom, and one of you is going home.

Erwin: Who prepared what on this team?

Jaenice: I handled the dry rub on the venison and the banana pudding.

James: I handled the sides for the venison.

Gabe: I actually cooked the venison tonight.

Chelia: Jaenice, the pudding tasted good, but the concept was weak from the get-go. And your rub, it lacked salt.

Chelia: Gabe, have you cooked venison before?

Gabe: Never. I tried to treat it like steak and get it to medium rare.

Chelia: You nailed the cook on it. It was still juicy and moist. You did a great job there.

Gabe: Thank you. @I’m feeling safer than the other two, but I think James is going home, because Jaenice did a lot of work here too.

Erwin: James, you actually had really good sides. I think the problem here is that you made too many sides. There was too much going on in the savory dish and your dessert had been completely neglected by your team.

James: @I made good food, but I’m not on the winning team. @It fucking sucks, man. @But I think Jaenice is going home tonight. @Bye, boo.

Michele: Please wait in the stew room as we make our decision.

Jaenice: @Right now, I’m nervous. @I’m definitely stronger than James and Gabe, so they better not eliminate me.

Chelia: The biggest issue we have is that the workload clearly wasn’t distributed here. Do we send home Gabe for not doing nearly enough, or Jaenice for the bland venison and boring dessert?

Max: I think it can be argued for either side.

Erwin: Alright.

In walks the bottom team again.

Michele: Unfortunately, one of you is going home tonight. Jaenice, please return to the kitchen and leave.

Jaenice: Thank you for this opportunity to compete and for letting me put up some great Korean-Southern food. @I’m pissed that I’m going home. @This is some serious bullshit. @I’ve never been on the bottom before, and I’m out. @Great.

My bakery: dream 17

I have mentioned in previous posts that I have been a pastry chef before. I love to bake and I love to cook, if sharing my recettes has not been proof enough. I want to one day open shop in Japan; I have spent 6 years of my life learning the language and I figured it would be a great chance for me to immerse myself in a country that isn’t America. The bakery itself, I would probably do desserts with a modern Asian spin. I want it to look modern, clean, and sort of like 85 degrees C in some aspects, if it were to have a love child with Koi Dessert Bar from Sydney, NSW. A lot of my recettes, they might go on to be a part of this bakery one day. That’s the goal anyways.

I think the biggest reason why I want this bakery is that it would be my own atelier. Atelier is French for studio, and it really just refers to a place where you craft things. I want to be able to craft desserts that tell my personal stories. I want to share my experiences, traveling the world, and the people I’ve met, their memories, all through the food I create. That’s the reason why I got into cooking. It was a chance for me to create an interactive, immersive experience. I can bring back what I felt, saw, and heard through the food. Those memories, they are sealed in each and every bite.

The desserts would change depending on the season. It’s important to keep the menu ever changing, because that just goes with the world and the people in it. Few things ever stay constant. Most things don’t. My menu will reflect that. I don’t know if there will be a “signature dessert” so to speak, but should there be one, it will need to be using ingredients that we can find seasonally. I want to use French, American, and Japanese techniques in my desserts, but the ingredients can pretty much range from anywhere. I just want to bring the world together, around this bakery.

Even though I would probably have to wake up every day at 4am to open shop, it would be worth it. By baking, I am doing something that I love. Something that genuinely fills me with joy to the brim. There has always been something about desserts that appealed to me. Probably my sweet tooth. Being able to say “I can make that” every time I open a dessert menu, it makes me laugh, but I’m also surprising myself that my skillset continues to learn and grow. My bakery, it will be an extension of my passion and ideas. My stories will be told with every dessert. To be able to take inspiration and breathe it into this business, it would be a dream come true. This bakery is the one I want to realize, from the world of my feather-light dreams.

White chocolate-raspberry financier: recette 3

White chocolate and raspberry. It’s one of my favorite combinations of all time. I just like the contrast of tart raspberries against white chocolate. It’s something I love to have in ice creams and cheesecakes quite often! Red fruit works wonders in most desserts. The contrast of the acidity with something rich is always a winner in my book.

Financiers are one of my top desserts. They are these little brown butter-almond cakes. I openly talk about my love of brown butter because it’s delicious; for those of you who don’t know what brown butter is, it’s when you melt down butter in a pot until it starts to caramelize, leaving the milk fats at the bottom and you with liquid gold. Just imagine those butterscotch candies, but not sweetened. That’s brown butter. For me, having a finance background, saying that you are an aspiring financier eating a financier is a fun pun to make.

For financiers:

3/4 cups almond flour
1/4 cup all purpose flour
2 egg whites
1/2 cup confectioners sugar (use 2/3 cups if you are using granulated)
1/3 cup brown butter
1/3 cup white chocolate chips, roughly chopped
1/3 cup raspberries

What I want to do: dream 1

I think it’s important to establish your goals in life, just something to aspire towards. For me, I hope to become an accounting manager or director of finance in a hotel (mostly because of the money) and then move to Japan and open up my own bakery. The reason for the bakery is because I love making desserts, and with food, sugar and chocolate are the best story-telling mediums out there. You can make basically any tangible object out of either of them.

But let’s break it down even further with the “Why? Game.” It’s a little trick where you ask “why” and respond to that five times. Why accounting? Because I need money. Why do you need money? Because I want to be financially stable to open my own business. Why do I want to open my own business? Because I want to be working for myself for a change. Why do I want to eventually work for myself? Because I like being able to be in charge of my own vision. Why do I need to be in charge? Because I would like to share what it is that I believe in, without needing the adulteration of business partners or other people.

Now I could break down why Japan and owning a bakery there, but that’ll just take too long. You get the idea. By breaking down what it is that I want to do with all of these questions, you are left with the purest reason as to why I am doing the things I am doing. I want to open up my own bakery and it must be my own, because I do not want to keep working for somebody else, and make their visions come true for the rest of my life. I need to be able to do something that will be true to me. I need to let my voice and my stories be expressed, either in words or pastries.

For my pastry experience, I have been baking for about 6 years (I started in 2010). It started with vegan cakes. I was raised by an organic-forward, lactose-intolerant, Buddhist mother who banned all things butter and sugar from our pantry. I love you, Mom, if you are somehow reading this and you realize that this is me. But anyways, I only could cook vegan because of that. And then I managed to sneak butter and heavy cream into our pantry, and then we got the ball rolling. Even though we didn’t have whisks, I managed to make due with what we had, and I made meringues using my strainer. When it came down to it, I was able to bake despite the obstacles presented before me, and it just showed that my determination to make desserts with next to no real equipment or ingredients.

While baking is one of my loves, I needed to have an umbrella passion that covers everything. Like I said, desserts are one of the best ways for me to tell my stories. While my writing skills are basically lukewarm one a good day, I know my love and understanding of pastry makes me capable of properly expressing my story and my journey from an immigrant child to an adult. Desserts just make me smile.