Warrior Chef Redemption: Round 4

Tadashi: @Seeing Fanny and Lucas get sent home was a huge shock for me. @They were both incredibly talented cooks and I expected to make it to the end with both of them. @But now I need to focus on my own cooking and making sure that I can win it.

Nate: @At this point, almost everyone from season 1 is gone. @Jo, Amanda, and I are all still here, and I want us all to make it into the final three together. @I think that Amanda and I would make a pretty bomb final two.

Jessica: Hi, everyone! So for today’s creativity challenge, we want you to draw knives!

Phung – chicken

Nate – beef

Tadashi – salmon

Amanda – pork

Justin – finger limes

Jo – huitlacoche

Henry – jew’s mallow

Kira – sunchoke

Jessica: So for this challenge, you must prepare a dish in pairs that features a classic protein and an unusual vegetable. You guys are allowed to choose your own pairs, so long as a vegetable and a protein are represented!

Tadashi: @I immediately go to Kira, because I love sunchokes, and I have a dish in mind that we can prepare with that and the salmon.

Kira: @I’m stoked to be working with Tadashi because I respect him a lot. @I think that we have a strong team already!

Amanda: @I go to Justin, mostly because I think he’d have a good idea on how to cook with the finger limes. @I know what jew’s mallow is, and it’s really slimy and difficult to work with. @I’d rather not work with it if I do not have to.

Nate: @I don’t want to work with Jo, but I don’t want to cook with the jew’s mallow either, so I’m stuck with him and his huitlacoche. @I’ve heard of what it is, but I’ve actually never cooked with it before.

Phung: @I’m stuck with Henry and his jewish spinach but I don’t care because it’s a creativity challenge and that means guaranteed immunity and no elimination. @I don’t need to try here.

Jessica: You guys have 30 minutes to prepare your dishes, time starts now!

Phung: @Henry wants to prepare a roast chicken thigh with jew’s mallow-potato puree and a french onion jus. @I think that this would be an epic thing to attempt, but I’m just going to let Henry lead the way, because I know I can nail it in any elimination challenge, so I’m not nervous.

Henry: @Phung’s normally a bossy bitch, but in this challenge, she’s clammed up. @She’s not even trying, and that’s annoying me. @I want to just win the challenge, but it’s basically another repeat of what happened last season with James.

Kira: @This is why I’m glad I’m not paired with Phung. @She would have killed me on this challenge. @Tadashi and I are working together really well, but that’s to be expected. @We both have Michelin starred backgrounds, and naturally, we are used to the same kinds of environments.

Tadashi: @Our dish is salmon with crispy sunchoke chips, sunchoke puree, and a butter sauce. @I’m feeling great about the dish mostly because Kira’s handling the sunchoke while I’m going to break down the salmon and cook that along with prepare the sauce.

Nate: @I’m not happy to work with Jo. @I’m feeling angry. @But huitlacoche, I’m tasting it and it’s actually a delicious ingredient. @I’m going to prepare grilled steak with huitlacoche puree, chimichurri, which I need to make authentic, or else I’ll be grilled. @Classic chimichurri has parsley, garlic, pepper, oregano, and onion, that I then blend up with sherry vinegar and the lemon juice.

Jo: @I’m handling cooking the steak while Nate does the puree and the chimichurri. @Nate’s a good cook, and I think he’s going to make it into the finale this season, because of how strong he is.

Amanda: @We have finger limes and pork. @Justin and I… don’t have any familiarity with the limes. @I taste them, and they’re really pungent. @We decide on seared pork medallions with finger lime gremolata and a pork, lime, and apple jus.

Justin: @Amanda is very focused on business and productivity, so I know that the two of us gel together when it comes to cooking. @I’m going to handle the jus and the gremolata while Amanda does the pork. @I’m taking scraps of the pork and using that with bones to prepare the jus. @I need to get that going ASAP so it has time to develop and reduce.

Jessica: Time’s up!

Henry: @I know that the chicken is undercooked and I’m sweating underneath my skin. @I don’t want to be on the bottom. @I’ve been on such a roll and I really don’t want it to stop here.

Jessica: Your judge is house critic, Lotte Amazo!

Lotte: Hello, everyone! Nice to see you all again!

Amanda: @Lotte is an intense critic and I know that impressing her is going to be a major challenge.

Lotte and Jessica sample the dishes.

Jessica: So Lotte, which team failed to impress you?

Lotte: Phung and Henry, the chicken was undercooked. That was a disappointment.

Phung: Like I give a shit. @It doesn’t matter. @If I got immunity, I wouldn’t try in the elimination most likely anyways, so I’m not really in the mood.

Jessica: And which teams did a good job marrying their ingredients together?

Lotte: Nate and Jo, the flavors actually worked really well together! The huitlacoche puree and chimichurri contrasted each other and lifted the steak. The dish by Tadashi and Kira, the salmon was delicious and I loved the sunchoke puree and chips.

Jessica: And which team won?

Lotte: It was close, but the best dish was prepared by… Tadashi and Kira.

Jessica: Congratulations, Tadashi and Kira! You won the creativity challenge!

Kira: @I’m stoked to win the challenge, but I can’t help feel that I would not have won if Tadashi was not my partner. @In my first season, I have bad luck with team challenges. @I’d always be on the bottom, so winning this one feels odd.

Tadashi: @Winning feels nice, but I’m just thinking about what the next challenge is going to be. @I’m getting nervous.

Jessica: Now for the elimination challenge! For this one, in teams of four, you’ll be creating your own pop-up restaurants! The captains of each team actually were decided in the last challenge! They will be Tadashi and Kira!

Amanda: Oh shit. @They are easily the two most experienced, so this is a clash of the titans. @I’m interested to see how this turns out.

Jessica: Tadashi, Kira, draw knives to determine who gets first pick.

Kira – 2

Tadashi – 1

Jessica: Tadashi, choose your first teammate!

Tadashi: I’ll take… Phung. @She’s crazy, but she’s extremely talented. @It’s an elimination challenge, so she’s going to be motivated.

Phung: We got this, bitches! @I will be the winner tonight, hands down.

Kira: My first teammate will be… Justin.

Justin: @Kira’s got my respect, and it only makes sense that we’d be on a team together. @I’m feeling good working with her.

Tadashi: I’ll choose Amanda. @She’s a solid worker as well, and I think she’s going to be a major asset to my team.

Kira: Hm…. @There’s Nate, Jo, and Henry left at this point. Henry. @He’s been doing really well this season, and I trust him more than I do Nate or Jo.

Henry: Thanks! @Kira, Justin, and I all competed together last season, and if we had Phung, it would have been all the season 3 people on the same team. @That would have been sick!

Tadashi: @It’s down to Nate and Jo. @That’s kind of a no-brainer. Nate. @He does tend to do better with creativity challenges, but I know he’s a much more mature team player than Jo is.

Nate: Thanks. @I’m on Tadashi’s team and it’s overall a solid group. @But if we are on the bottom, then I’m a goner.

Jessica: And Jo, you’re on Kira’s team!
Kira: @I don’t want Jo on my team, but he did decently in his original season, and he made it pretty far, so at least I know he can cook edible food.

Jo: @Kira’s not somebody I can really respect. @You work for a Michelin starred restaurant and yet you can’t win the title? @That’s disappointing.

Jessica: For this challenge, we want to see six dishes, three courses being appetizer, entree, and dessert! You guys have 2 and a half hours to pull off your dishes, and your time starts now!

Tadashi: @So on my team, we have Phung, Amanda, and Nate. @Everyone but Amanda cooks Asian, but that’s not really fair to put her in that position. @So in the end, we go with a Vietnamese concept, with Phung taking the lead.

Phung: @We got this. @Amanda cooks French, and in Vietnam, we have French influences. @For the first two courses, we are going to prepare a chili-chicken liver pate with fish sauce pickled artichokes and homemade crostini, which Amanda will work on. @For the second dish, we are making homemade goi cuon, which are the spring roll wrappers with shrimp in them, and I’m going to have Nate work on that. @For the mains, homemade pho, which Tadashi will work on, and I’m going to prepare ca kho to, which is caramelized fish in a clay pot, using catfish and cola to braise it. @For the desserts, I’m going to prepare a black sticky rice with jackfruit and a mango-coconut sorbet. @For the second dessert, Tadashi and Amanda are going to work together and make a lime creme brulee with Vietnamese coffee dusted doughnuts.

Amanda: @I’m handling the pate dish, which I know how to do, and the doughnuts. @I’m basically on yeast duty today, because I’m making the doughnuts and baguette for the crostini from scratch. @Phung basically overthrew Tadashi as team captain, and I’m mildly scared of her, because she’s definitely crazy.

Nate: @The trick with making my own spring roll wrappers is that I have to steam these individually. @It’s a major bitch, and they are sometimes tearing, but I know that doing this will show a lot more technique and it’ll justify why I needed almost 3 hours for it.

Tadashi: @I’m getting the creme brulee going after I start my broth for the pho. @I’m using the pressure cooker to release as much of that flavor in the bones as possible. @The creme brulees, they need to bake for basically an hour, so I have time to get those going right after the bones go into the pressure cooker.

Kira: @My team is Justin, Jo, and Henry. @We talk it over, and we decide to go with comfort food, because that’ll be the easiest way to incorporate our different backgrounds. @For the appetizers, we are going with a homemade grilled cheese with tomato soup, made by Henry, and a kale caesar salad spring roll with bagna cauda, which Jo is making. @For the second courses, we have Justin and Henry’s roasted chicken with gnocchi and mushrooms, and my own pork adobo with cilantro-lime rice. @For the last courses, I’m making a pear upside-down cake with vanilla ice cream and brown butter ice caramel, and then Justin and Henry are working together on the other dish, and it’s going to be a raspberry tart with lemon curd ice cream. @I’m feeling nervous, because I’m tackling two dishes, but Henry’s going on a limb and doing three and Justin’s going to be helping us as we go.

Henry: @I’ve got a gargantuan task ahead of me. @For the first course, I’m getting the tomatoes into the oven to roast them and then I get the bread dough proofing for the sandwiches. @For the second course, I have the potatoes in the oven as well, and then I’m breaking down the chicken and getting the mushroom and chicken sauce going. @For the last course, I’m helping with making the lemon curd for the ice cream, so I get that going as well while I have everything proofing and baking off. @I’m stressed, but I want to prove that I am an ambitious and capable individual.

Justin: @Henry’s insane for taking on so much. @But we can’t really trust Jo, because he’ll just get passive aggressive and yell at us. @I’m helping Henry make the gnocchi, because I know I can do that well for him, and then I get started on the raspberry tart and the ice cream base.

Amanda: @I get my pate finished, and then I check on the bread. @It’s good to go, so I chuck that into the oven. @It needs to bake, and then cool so that I can slice it, and then from there, I need to also grill it. @For the bread, I’m using steam in the oven to help create that proper crust.

Tadashi: @I get my brulees into the oven, and I see where everyone else is. @I’m feeling good about where my teammates are at overall. @Phung is taking us in a great direction, and we are just going to go with what she’s thinking.

Phung: @I’m going to help us nail this shit. @Our dishes are modern or authentic Vietnamese dishes. @These other guys can kiss my ass.

Justin: @I go to the ice cream machine and pour the mixture into there. @I get the tarts out of the oven, and the shells are perfect. @I check the raspberries, and they’re reduced into this nice jam consistency. @I get those into the tarts and cool them all down together. @I’m feeling great about this!

Henry: @The gnocchi is done, the chickens are roasting, the sauce tastes great, and so does the soup! @I’m getting the sandwiches done, and the lemon curd is already made. @It was stressful, but we managed to get it done!

Jessica: Time’s up!

Tadashi: @I’m feeling great about our team’s efforts, but Kira doesn’t look disappointed about her menu, so it might be a close match.

Phung: @If we lose, I hope Tadashi does home. @He failed as a captain and that’s why I stepped up and took over.

Jessica: Your judges are:

Frank Torres

Missy Sky

Max Hudson

Jessica: Let’s start with the first courses from each team!

Team 1

Amanda – chili-chicken liver pate, fish sauce pickled artichokes, crostini

Nate – goi cuon

Team 2

Henry – tomato soup with grilled cheese

Jo – kale caesar salad egg roll with bagna cauda

Missy: Interesting how both dishes incorporated freshly made bread and a variation of a spring roll. I loved Amanda’s pate, and the artichokes were an interesting choice, but they worked really well.

Max: Nate’s goi cuon, he cooked the shrimp well, the fact he made his own wrappers, that’s incredible. I loved the spicy-sour sauce he made with it. Overall, it was refreshing and delicious.

Frank: Henry’s tomato soup was dynamite. I loved how much flavor he got into the bisque, and then the fact he made his own bread was brilliant. For Jo’s, I liked the concept a lot, but the usage of flower kale, it made the dish hard to eat, because the kale, I found myself choking on it. And compared to the other dishes, knowing he did not make his own wrappers, that worked against him here.

Jessica: And now for the second courses!

Team 1

Nate – beef pho

Phung – ca kho to

Team 2

Kira – pork adobo with cilantro-lime rice

Henry and Justin – chicken thigh with gnocchi and mushrooms

Missy: Going into the next set of courses, I loved the flavors in Nate’s pho. He used the pressure cooker to extract a ton of flavor out of those beef bones. The fact he made his own pho noodles here, I’m blown away.

Frank: Phung’s catfish was delicious. It was succulent, juicy, and I loved that she used cola to glaze it. The flavor of her dish were phenomenal. I also loved Kira’s adobo a lot. She packed so much flavor into there and the rice was great. I actually used Kira’s rice to finish Phung’s dish.

Max: Henry’s chicken thigh was expertly cooked and I really enjoyed the flavors in the gnocchi and the mushrooms. Out of all four dishes, I’d say Henry’s was the most beautifully presented. But I preferred Kira and Nate’s dishes overall for these.

Jessica: And finally, our desserts!

Team 1

Phung – black sticky rice, jackfruit and mango-coconut sorbet

Tadashi and Amanda – lime creme brulee with Vietnamese coffee doughnuts

Team 2

Kira – pear upside-down cake with vanilla ice cream and brown butter caramel

Justin and Henry – raspberry tart with lemon curd ice cream

Max: I just loved Phung’s dessert. It was delicious. The combination of jack fruit with rice pudding, it was inspired. The sorbet was creamy and it tasted of mango. I really loved it. For the second dessert, creme brulee was executed perfectly and I loved the doughnuts. Together, too bitter, but I still liked the consistency of that brulee.

Frank: Kira’s cake was moist, light, and the pears were stewed and beautiful. The ice cream was great and the caramel was divine with those pears. This dessert was a great end to the meal.

Missy: I liked the tart portion of the second dessert, but that ice cream, it had a strange, chalky consistency. I’m not that big on the ice cream overall, but the tart was executed really well.

Jessica: So can we decide on which team won?

Max: It came down to the desserts, but yes, we do.

In walks Tadashi, Phung, Nate, and Amanda.

Jessica: Tonight… the four of you won the challenge! Congratulations!

Frank: You four made six incredible dishes and you have a lot to be proud of!

Amanda: @Hearing that we won, it feels amazing. @I’m pretty stoked!

Max: We all agreed that the menu was great, the food was fantastic for the most part.

Jessica: So you’re all safe, and can leave. Thank you.

Tadashi: @I’m proud of us for doing this well. @It feels good to know you’re safe, and that you led a team to victory!
Phung: @Winning the restaurant concept challenge is awesome, and it was well deserved. @The Phung Dynasty continues, even now!

The top four leave.

In walks Kira, Justin, Jo, and Henry.

Jessica: Tonight, the four of you are on the losing team. However, two of you are safe.

Max: Henry, Justin, the two of you worked together on two of the dishes. Who did what on each dish?

Henry: For the chicken dish, I prepared the chicken and the sauce. I made the lemon curd for the ice cream, which Justin finished.

Justin: I did the gnocchi for the second course, and then I made the raspberry dessert.

Max: Then we have a slight dilemma here. Justin, we loved the gnocchi and the raspberry tart, but the ice cream, you made that, and it was chalky.

Frank: Jo, did you feel like your one dish contributed to the team’s success?

Jo: I think I made a good dish. It was not something that would have cost my team the victory by any means.

Frank: It was a good dish, but when you compared it to what everyone else made in the first course, and on top of that, you had three hours to focus on one dish. Everything on that dish, it needed to be made from scratch, and you did not. So we are mostly questioning what you did with your three hours.

Jo: I focused on my own dish because nobody else wanted my help.

Missy: Kira, your adobo was fantastic and the dessert was delicious. You are definitely safe tonight.

Kira: Thank you.

Frank: Henry, your appetizer was great and we loved the chicken dish. You pushed yourself, helping out with half the menu, and we all agreed that you are safe as well.

Jessica: Henry, Kira, the two of you can leave the room.

Kira: @I feel bad, because I’m the captain of the losing team. @I should be standing there with Jo and Justin right now, up for elimination.

Henry: @i’m glad that the judges recognized me trying my best. @I had to push myself because Jo was not.

Kira and Henry leave.

Jessica: Justin, Jo, one of you is going home tonight.

Justin: @I’m feeling like Jo might be going home. @Yeah, they hated half of my dessert, but I did a lot more than he did in the time allotted, and I was much more of a team player. @I think Jo needs to be eliminated.

Jo: @We both made it to the final four, we both are skilled. @I think that Justin should go home, though, because that lemon curd ice cream was gross, and he was responsible for screwing that up. @If they save Justin, they’re awarding him for basically tanking the team.

Jessica: The judges have talked it over, and it was not an unanimous decision. Tonight… Justin, you’re going home. Please return to the kitchen and leave.
Justin: Alright. Thanks for inviting me back, and I’m sorry about the ice cream. @It sucks. @I really thought that I would be safe tonight. @Seeing Jo not go home when he clearly deserves to, it sucks so much. @He did not even try to be a team player. @To work as a chef, you need to be able to work well with others and be a leader, and he can’t even do that. @I know, whether or not I am a Warrior Chef, that I can do that. @I will be successful in my career, because I’ll continue to push myself.

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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.

Warrior Chef Redemption: Round 1

Kira: @Walking back into the Warrior Chef kitchen feels bittersweet. @I came really close to snagging the title just one season ago, but at least now I have a chance to redeem myself and win the entire title.

Tadashi: @I’m looking around and the entire competition looks a lot more intense this time around. @I know it’s going to be a long road to redemption, but I’m ready to put my head down and work through it.

Amanda: @I get back to my station and it feels oddly nostalgic. @I went so far, and so close to that final challenge. @I see Jo, Rose, and Nate, and they were all really talented on my season. @I’m starting to wonder why I signed back up for this again.

Jessica: Welcome back to Warrior Chef, everyone!

Lucas: @We are greeted by Jessica, and it just becomes that much more real that the competition is on.

Jessica: You guys know the drill on how this competition works. So let’s get into the creativity challenge!

A cart is wheeled in, carrying a variety of animal carcasses

Jessica: We know you are all talented cooks. That’s why we invited you all back to compete for a second chance. But what we want to see if what you guys can do with scraps of meat. Using what’s on the cart and a limited pantry, you’ll have 45 minutes to prepare a dish. And the winner of this challenge will receive immunity.

Karen: @Immunity? @That’s going to be a lifesaver. @Especially when everyone here is that good. @And lucky enough, everyone from season 1 has a huge advantage. @We had this exact creativity challenge already!

Jessica: You have 45 minutes, time starts now!

Fanny: @I won this challenge in my season, so I’m going to win it again this season. @I decide on making a venison consomme with yogurt dumplings and roasted mushrooms. @Last time, I went with a deconstructed curry pie, but I don’t want to repeat the same dish. @I know that from my season, Tadashi, Lucas, and Karen are all strong cooks, but this is my challenge to win.

Lucas: @I manage to take lamb bones and I decide on making a lamb sauce to go with some homemade gnocchi and some fried mint to finish. @I know we have really strong competition here, and I want to show them what I’m made of.

Tadashi: @Even though I have tough competition from just my season, I can’t underestimate anyone here. @Amanda, Rose, Justin, Kira, and Phung are all major threats too. @I’m preparing a niku jyaga, which is a broth with scraps of meat and potatoes. @I’m going to use dashi and the bones to really concentrate that flavor and then portion out the meat from the scraps for the actual dish itself.

Karen: @I almost won this challenge last time and I got really lucky that I landed the foie gras. @This time, there’s none of that. @I see chicken and I decide on a chicken jus with some crispy root vegetables and a piece of fried chicken skin to garnish on top with. @It’ll be tasty.

Amanda: @In my season, I almost won the first challenge with my lamb lollipops. @I grab the lamb and decide on preparing a lamb and tripe stew with tomatoes and white wine. @I’m using the pressure cooker to make sure that it’ll get done in time.

Justin: @Amanda is breaking out the pressure cooker and that’s pretty genius. @I decide on a ground meat infused carbonara pasta. @I was known on my season for making the best pasta by far and I don’t intend to drop that title anytime soon. @Phung is my biggest competition, because she nails everything she attempts.

Phung: @I know that this challenge was catered to me. @I know how to use scrap meat. @I’m going to make Vietnamese crepes with braised pork and some pork cracklings and then adding in some cilantro, bean sprouts, mint, and lime to garnish the entire dish with.

Henry: @I manage to get the duck carcass and I’m going to make a duck stock risotto with some orange salad on top of it. @I think that the rice and salad will be a clever way to go and I know how to make a delicious risotto, so this should be a really easy dish for me to nail.

Jessica: Time’s up!

Phung: @I see what everyone else made and I’m not too impressed. @My dish will definitely win me immunity tonight.

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

Fanny: @Aster is such a sweetheart and I know he’ll be a generous judge when it comes to saying what it is he wants from our food.
Aster: Welcome back, everyone! What I love about these Redemption seasons is how much talent we re-invite to the kitchen and how much higher the bar gets set!

Aster and Jessica try the dishes.

Jessica: So Aster, who failed to impress you with the scraps today?

Aster: Justin, the carbonara was delicious but the sauce overpowered the actual scraps.  They couldn’t be tasted under all of that fat. Henry, the risotto was undercooked and placing the salad on top made the vegetables too wilted. And Lucas. The gnocchi were just a tad overcooked.

Lucas: @I feel like crap for being on the bottom. @I really wanted to have a stronger start this season.

Henry: @Being on the bottom really sucks. @You don’t want to start a season as an underdog, you know?

Aster: So for my favorites. Fanny, the consomme, mushrooms, and dumplings all came together nicely. Tadashi, the niku jyaga was a clever way to organically incorporate the scraps and the flavors were delicious with the umami in that broth. Phung. The Vietnamese crepes were fantastic and the fact you got pork crackling in less than 30 minutes, it was brilliant.

Jessica: And who prepared the best dish?

Aster: It was a close call, but the best dish was… Tadashi’s.

Phung: Are you kidding me? @Who the hell is Tadashi?! @It should’ve been me!

Kira: Yikes. @Phung is being her usual self.

Henry: @Straight up, Phung is a raving bitch when she doesn’t get her way. @That’s both her best and worst quality. @I fear for my life in her presence.

Tadashi: Thank you. @Winning immunity feels great, especially because I’m up against 11 previous competitors who all are thirsty for the win as much as I was.

Jessica: And now it’s time for your elimination challenge! For this challenge, it’s simple. Redo the dish that cost you the title last time and make it a winning dish. Some of you have competed in the Redemption Rounds before. For those of you who have, you have to redeem that dish, not the one that eliminated you the first time. 60 minutes, starting now!

Kira: @I lost last time because of my scallop dish. @The judges felt it was too simple and forgettable. @This time, I’m going to use those same flavors, but differently. @I’m making a scallop en papillote with fennel, lemon, pepper, and butter. @I’m going to serve that with a fennel couscous and hope that’ll be good enough to impress the judges. @I’m making my own couscous, so that’ll show a lot more skill. @I still remember in the first elimination challenge in my finale, I was dinged for not trying to make my own, so I’m going to do it here to prove to everyone why I am Warrior Chef-worthy. @I promised that if I had the chance to redeem this dish, I would and I would make it a winner. @Now’s the time to put my money where my mouth is.

Jo: @I got eliminated over a tuna dish last time because my black garlic marinade was too strong. @I’m going to redeem that dish by removing the black garlic entirely, and focusing on citrus, cucumbers, and avocado. @I’m going to make a tuna and avocado poke with cucumber ribbons and citrus granita.
Karen: @I got eliminated over pate choux fritters with shrimp and tomato-caper relish. @It was the amuse bouche challenge. @I lost it because my shrimp were overcooked. @This time around, I’m going to prepare the same dish, but dialing back on how long I cook the shrimp for.

Phung: FUCK ME! @I got eliminated for two dishes, not one. @My Shaking Beef tartare was bland and then the snapper and squid dish, my team fucked up my proteins. @So I have to prepare both dishes. @For my snapper, I’m doing a snapper crudo with chilies and lemongrass-coconut gazpacho. @For the squid dish, I’m going to have to prepare a fried calamari with ginger compressed vegetables.

Tadashi: @I still remember the dish that cost me the title my first season around. @I prepared a dessert, castella with white nama chocolate, honey comb candy, matcha ice cream. @It was deemed way too sweet. @So for this rendition, I’m going to make a matcha cake with honey-cream cheese chantilly and matcha ice cream. @I’m omitting the white chocolate, because it made my dessert too sweet last time.

Henry: @I was eliminated over my chicken dish. @It was a fried chicken thigh with parsnip puree, chips, and chicken jus. @I’m going to prepare it, but this time, make a chicken roulad with parsnip confit, chicken jus, and stuff my roulad with a savory bread pudding. @I got criticized for being boring, so I want redemption.

Amanda: @I feel like I have a huge advantage because I got eliminated in the 30 minute amuse bouche creativity challenge in the finale. @And I get an hour to re-do that? @Awesome. @I had a blood orange cured salmon with chervil and speck. @It was just too cluttered. @For this challenge, I decide to prepare a salmon sashimi with a speck-blood orange vinaigrette and some chervil foam.

Rose: @I lost the title because of my dessert. @The tespixhe, an Albanian pudding that is like a sugary cake-cookie. @The judges hated the texture, and voted for Vin instead of me. @I’m going to just prepare the exact same dessert, because I know that it’s delicious. @Last time, it came out dense. @This time, I will not allow that, so I’m adding in baking soda.

Nate: @I got sent home because a dish inspired by my most embarrassing moment aka when I was overweight. @It was a stuffed pork chop with thrice cooked chips. @The judges didn’t like it because it was too dry. @I’m going to do a bacon wrapped pork crepinette with yucca chips and a mustard aioli. @I think that changing it up with the yucca chips and mustard aioli will make my dish stand out a lot more in a good way.

Jessica: Time’s up!

Karen: @I’m thinking that I redeemed the dish by cooking it properly this time. @I’m a little older and a lot smarter this season, and I think I might be able to finally win!

Phung: @I know I crushed it. @In school, people think that I’m some sort of bitch or diva, and that I’m too bossy. @But I back it up with my actions and results.

Jessica: Your judges are:

Vanilla Cuylenberg – Warrior Chef 1 winner

Vin Rugnetta – Warrior Chef 2 winner

Lauren Wilson – Warrior Chef 3 winner

Jessica: Let’s start with the dishes by Karen, Amanda, and Nate!

Karen – pate choux fritters with shrimp and tomato-caper relish

Amanda – salmon sashimi with speck-blood orange vinaigrette and chervil foam

Nate – bacon wrapped pork crepinette with yucca chips and mustard aioli

Vanilla: Karen cooked her fritters well, but the shrimp were undercooked for me. I liked her relish. But the dish she put up was the exact same one she was sent home on. I was expecting to see her re-do the concept too.

Vin: Amanda’s sashimi was sliced excellently. Her vinaigrette was unusual, but it worked really nicely against the meatiness of the salmon and the herbaceous chervil. Overall, she’s proving why she was such a strong threat in my season.

Lauren: Nate’s crepinette was cooked nicely but his yucca chips were dense and that aioli just made the dense dish even heavier. It was too much to finish in one go. He needed freshness, and half that portion per plate.

Jessica: And now we have the dishes by Phung, Kira, and Jo!

Phung – snapper with lemongrass, coconut, and chilies; calamari with ginger vegetables
Kira – scallop en papillote with fennel couscous
Jo – tuna and avocado poke with cucumber ribbons and citrus granita

Lauren: Phung… she’s doing what she does best. Overachieving. She prepared two dishes, and she managed to nail both of them. The snapper was cut nicely and the broth was great! And then the calamari with compressed vegetables was delicious.
Vanilla: Kira’s scallops were the best cooked piece of seafood I have tasted so far. They were buttery and succulent. And knowing that she took the time to prepare her own couscous was incredible!

Vin: Jo’s poke was an interesting idea, and it was a departure from his original concept. I remember he got dinged for black garlic, and he omitted it here. That was a good call. He definitely redeem himself here.

Jessica: Finally, the dishes by Henry, Tadashi, and Rose!

Henry – fried chicken thigh with parsnip puree, chips, and chicken jus

Tadashi – matcha cake with honey-cream cheese chantilly and matcha ice cream

Rose – tespixhe with citrus salad

Lauren: Henry cooked the chicken nicely and I liked the different kinds of parsnip applications. It’s not necessarily a winning dish in the bunch, but it showed that he knows how to cook chicken.

Vanilla: Tadashi’s dessert falls in the same category as Henry’s dish. It was alright, but you can’t expect cream cheese icing to be part of a winning dessert on Warrior Chef. It was good home cooking, but it wasn’t refined.

Vin: Rose’s dessert tasted chalky and the citrus salad just amplified that. I did not enjoy the flavors that much.

Jessica: Thank you, returning champions for coming back to judge. Have you guys decided on who redeemed themselves and who is going to be eliminated first?

Lauren: Yes, we have.

In walks Kira, Amanda, and Phung.

Jessica: Tonight… the three of you redeemed your dishes, and one of you won the challenge! Congratulations!

Lauren: Phung, you managed to produce two solid dishes, and it showed why you were such a major threat. Kira, you made your own couscous. That’s insane. Your scallops were beautifully cooked and we just loved your flavors.

Vin: Amanda, you contrasted the flavors and textures perfectly. This wasn’t clunky or confused. It was delicious!

Jessica: Vanilla, please announce the winner.

Vanilla: Four great dishes, but the best cook tonight was definitely…. Kira. Your scallops were the best cooked scallops any of us have ever tasted.

Jessica: Congratulations, Kira! You won the elimination challenge!

Kira: Thank you. @I proved to myself and to everyone here that I didn’t deserve to leave without that title. @I’m so proud that the judges agreed with that and gave my dish the win. @It’s definitely a warm return to the competition. @It’s like I never left!

Kira, Amanda, and Phung leave.

Phung: @I think it’s bull that I didn’t win, because I made two good dishes, not one. @But at least I’m on top, which I rightfully deserved to be.

In walks Rose, Nate, and Karen.

Jessica: One of you is going home tonight.

Vin: Rose, your dessert was just chalky and unpleasant. The dish just didn’t eat well for any of us. Nate, the yucca chips were dense and unpleasant. You switched around the mistakes this time. Good meat, but really bad fries.

Vanilla: Karen, the shrimp was undercooked for me. It was gummy and almost squeaky. The choux fritter was delicious, just not the shrimp.

Karen: @Hearing that I served undercooked shrimp, I think I’m a goner tonight. @I’m trying to stay strong, but it’s hard to at this point.

Nate: @Hearing that my yucca chips sucked, that’s not a good feeling. @I’m potentially going home first, and that’s my nightmare. @Nobody wants to go out first. @None of us did that badly last time around.

Jessica: Rose, I’m so sorry. Please return to the kitchen and leave.

Rose: Are you shitting me? @I can’t believe I’m going home first. @Bitch, I was a runner-up of my season! @I call foul play! @What the fuck is this?! @I’m not happy. @This is not why I came back. @These fools got so lucky I’m going home first.

Nate: @I was not expecting that. @I thought Rose was going to go to the very end, and she’s the first person going home. @This season, it’s tough. @Nobody is safe, that’s for sure. @I’m feeling vulnerable right now.

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.