OK, step right up, folks, for the Chef's Knife Battle Royale! The two who don't get along will be teamed together - veddy interestink!
The cheftestants all head back to the TC house; Nyesha notes how harsh Heather was on Beverly and thinks it shows a lot about Heather's integrity. Ty-Lor realizes he just skated by and he needs to step it up.
The next morning, they show up at the TC kitchen and Tim Love is there. And what's on the table? A lot of Don Julio tequila. For the Quickfire Challenge, they are to choose one of the tequilas and create a dish that pairs well with the tequila. Tim Love said they're looking for an intense, long-lasting flavor from their dish.
Padma notes that there will be a tequila tasting so they can choose the particular tequila they want to use, there won't be any immunity, but the winner will win $5,000.
Kind of love the way they're tossing around all of the herb bundles. Paul notes that Ty-Lor is using clams and realizes it's a great pairing with tequila, but Ty-Lor notes that Chris Jones is overcooking his chicken breast, and could be in trouble.
The bottom group? Heather, Chris Jones, and Sarah (Tim Love said Heather's dish was like a new special at a chain restaurant - OUCH! LOL)
The top group consists of Chris Crary (he had Sea Salt Air on his raw oyster - but...but...but.......is that FOAM? Nooooooooooooo!!!), Lindsay, and Ty-Lor. And the winner is? Ty-Lor! Went from the bottom in the previous EC and goes to the top in the next QF.
Now on to the Elimination Challenge....Sarah notes before going to commercial that it's really going to get some tempers flaring.
Padma says "the game is ON." She said she hoped that the cheftestants like who they're standing next to - because that's their team partner. Sarah and Paul looked pleased....Heather and Beverly both look very discomfited and NOT pleased! Tim Love said he's hosting a game dinner @ his restaurant for a group of friends. Each team will cook a course of game that is the favorite of one of the friends.
Nyesha & Dakota - Venison for Bryan Caswell of Wreath, Houston
Sarah & Paul - Squab for Anita Lo from Annissa, NYC
Grayson & Chris J. - Elk for Tim Love of Lonesome Dove Western Bistro, Fort Worth
Chris C. & Lindsay - Boar for Jon Shook of Animal, Los Angeles
Heather & Beverly - Duck for John Currence of City Grocery, Oxford, MS
Ed & Ty-Lor - Quail for Vinny Dotolo from Animal, Los Angeles
TWIST TIME! They'll also have to cook a few extra plates...for their fellow chefs! All of them will be judges as well! The cheftestants will choose three dishes that they like the *least*, and those teams will be put in front of the judges. The judges will have the final say .... on which TEAM will go home. It's a DOUBLE ELIMINATION! This could be irony if the Heather & Beverly team goes home! LOL And the winning team will split $10,000.
They head out to Whole Foods, and Beverly is shown trying to work with Heather. She notes that Heather is very bossy, but she's trying to be a team player. Grayson is concerned about Chris Jones, because "he makes crazy stuff, and I don't" - so she's hoping he doesn't go overboard.
Back in the TC Kitchen for prep. Everyone notices that Heather and Beverly are *not* meshing. Heather says Beverly cooks Pan-Asian, and she does American farm-to-table, and she tells Beverly that she wants to make sure the dish isn't too Asian, as that's not her style. And "I'm not going home, Bev!" Edward notes the friction between the two of them, and notes that Heather is being a complete bitch.
They're done with prep and head back to the TC house. Beverly notes that Heather was rather abrasive and controlling all day. She reveals in the confessional that there was a time in her life that she was in an abusive relationship - someone who physically and emotional abused her. One day when he was at work, she ran away. She's become stronger since she's been out of that relationship.
And we're back - Chris Crary and Lindsay are the first course up - Boar. The stress level is high, especially since they're judging each other's dishes. Everyone is crowded in a very tiny kitchen @ The Lonesome Dove Western Bistro - AND everyone is sweating bullets, as it's really hot in there.
Chris Jones screwed up his sweet potato dish, and he has to switch up his dish. Grayson is really concerned. Heather notes that Beverly asks a lot of questions like a sous chef does. She doesn't think like a chef. Beverly said she doesn't like the onions in their duck dish, but Heather said "This is part of my rustic style so we're going to have to compromise." To me, that sounds like Heather is saying "The onions are staying; I don't care what you think, Beverly."
Chris Crary and Lindsay realize that their boar racks were a bit underdone in the middle, but they were able to get enough chops off the ends that were properly done without serving any of the underdone ones to the judges.
1st COURSE - Chris C. & Lindsay - Roasted Wild Boar with Peach BBQ Sauce, Kohlrabi Slaw & Farro-Fried Rice - Tom said it was a nice dish, just not exciting. Back in the kitchen, Sarah said it was a fun way to do a BBQ; Paul noted the slaw was a bit watery.
2nd COURSE - Heather & Beverly - Five-Spice Duck Breast with Creamy Polenta & Pickled Cherries - Hugh notes the duck could have been rendered a bit more, that it was a bit rubbery. John Currence said he didn't like the way the pickled cherries worked, Vinny Dotolo thought it was too safe. Back in the kitchen, Paul notes that there was no crispy skin, but Sarah tells them that the duck is cooked perfectly.
3rd COURSE - Grayson & Chris J. - Juniper-Roasted Elk with Sweet Potato and Bouquet of Citrus Greens - when asked by Padma if that's the way they wanted the sweet potato to be cut, Chris Jones begins to explain he wanted to do an elaborate technique that unfortunately, did not work out for him. Grayson cut in and very deliberately said loudly "That IS how we wanted it to be; we just wanted to get height and we accomplished that." As they walk away, she chews out Chris J. saying "Don't effing tell them that way!" Tim Love said the piece of meat was seasoned and cooked well, Bryan Caswell said when the plate hit the table, he thought 1982, Banquet Menu. (ouch!) As they walk back into the kitchen, Grayson turns to Chris J. and said "we're probably going home so do NOT saying anything to them [other cheftestants in the kitchen] about how we feel about our dish." Heather told Grayson that the elk was cooked perfectly.
4th COURSE - Ed & Ty-Lor - Sorghum Quail with Pickled Cherries and Eggplant - (pickled cherries - AGAIN?) - Tim Love said the quail shines, and Anita Lo said they managed to bring out the early qualities of the ingredients. All we see in the kitchen is some high fives and someone saying "beautiful."
5th COURSE - Nyesha & Dakota - Roasted Rack of Venison with Kabocha Squash & Beet Gratin - venison is undercooked and it's noted by all judges. Tom likes the texture of the gratin; and back in the kitchen, Heather notes that "it's a little rare."
6th COURSE - Paul & Sarah - Squab Breast and Squab Sausage with Nectarine Pickles with Shallots & Jalapeno - the presentation was noted as being a little sloppy and rushed, but Tom liked it. Anita Lo would have liked more caramelization on the skin. Back in the kitchen, you can hear someone comment about acid can overpower. Sarah is freaked out about the sausage.
Padma comes into the kitchen and asked for Ed and Ty-Lor! Everyone immediately congrats the two of them - obviously the winner, and Tim Love declares them the winner. They'll split $10,000. Padma tells them that they, along with the other cheftestants, will have 15 minutes to decide which three teams to send out to face elimination. They head back into the kitchen, and they're all just sitting there until Heather asks Ed and Ty-Lor "What do you guys want to do?
Beverly said she wishes the judges had just made the decision. Heather said "maybe we'll just make them make it" and Grayson responds "No! We'll just vote!" Heather said "Well, you're not going to vote for yourself to go out there!" and Grayson responds "well, neither are you!" Ty-Lor said he doesn't want to see Heather go home because she's a really good friend, but everyone's going to have to make hard decisions.
Paul said he thought Heather & Beverly's dish was not one of his favorites, and Nyesha & Dakota's meat was a little tough. He also said Chris/Grayson's meat was dry when he ate it. Then Heather said Nyesha/Dakota's meat was too rare and Chris J/Grayson's dish - she didn't understand the bouquet. When Grayson asked who was Heather's third, Heather said she couldn't pick a third. Grayson said "But we all have to pick 3!" and Heather said "You don't have to tell me about the process!"
The choices to go into JT -
Elk (Grayson & Chris Jones)
Duck (Heather & Beverly) and
Venison (Nyesha & Dakota)
Tom asks Heather & Beverly why they think they're up there - Heather responds maybe because *she* was the winner of the previous challenge. Grayson is shown shaking her head and Nyesha stares up into the air.
Tom tells Dakota that the dish was definitely undercooked, Padma asked Nyesha if she ever thought to go over and see if she needed help. Nyesha said by the time she did, it was too late. Hugh said that the flavor profile was very good.
For Grayson & Chris J., Hugh said the meat was cooked pretty well, but said they might be living and dying by that sweet potato fence that didn't work out.
They then get to Heather & Beverly, and Tom asks if they know why they're there. Beverly begins to answer, but Heather interrupts and said they're trying to balance two chefs on one plate. Tom said it felt like a collection of ingredients, not a finished dish. Heather said throughout the entire competition, she and Beverly haven't seen eye-to-eye. Beverly begins to say she didn't think so, but yet AGAIN, Heather interrupts her and said "I do. I think our work ethics are completely different, especially in the last challenge. [Tom sits up and takes notice at this point!] In the last challenge, you had shrimp, that's what you focused on for two days..." and Beverly said "Wow, that just really hits me. I have a really strong work ethic, that's 400 shrimp to peel and deveining perfectly. She helped me to peel them at the very end, but I didn't ask you to help me." Heather says very cuttingly "No, your teammate did." SHOCKED look on Beverly's face. Dakota steps into the conversation and said she didn't like the way the conversation was going and thought that Beverly was an extremely hard-working cook and she kicks butt in the kitchen.
Tom asks how it manifested today - Heather said Beverly doesn't trust herself and have enough self-confidence. Beverly said she does have confidence but it comes out in a different way.
Back in the Stew Room, Heather said a lot of things came up and that she's sorry if Beverly feels she hurt her feelings, but she didn't get any say in the dish -(HUH? All we saw was Heather having HER say in the dish!) Heather said she didn't want to do Asian, but Beverly didn't listen to her. REALLY? If she's that strong of a person, she should have said something even more! Heather continued to bring up the shrimp issue from the LAST competition, and everyone is kind of stunned in the Stew Room!
Back at JT, Tom said that the teams sent through to the bottom group were the correct 3 teams to have been in front of them. They review all of the dishes, and make their decision. The team going home? Dakota and Nyesha! Dakota's devastated that she took down Nyesha down with her.
Previews show them heading for Austin - and Patti LaBelle will be a guest judge.
For LCK - both Nyesha and Dakota get their envelopes at the TC house. They show up and see Whitney. And the four previous guys all show up to watch. The challenge is to use only a wok as their cooking pot, and they have to use one special ingredient in honor of the hosting state - cactus. 30 minutes using cactus and any other ingredient in the TC pantry. Richie asks Keith quietly if you can eat cactus raw, and Keith replies yes. Keith asks how Dakota is doing; she's shaking. Keith asks Nyesha what direction she's going in - she said Asian. Keith tells them they have 10 minutes to go, and then Andrew asks Whitney what she was going to do - she's doing a chicken-fried rice with cactus.
Whitney does a Cactus and Chicken-Fried Rice with Sriracha.
Nyesha does Asian Style Scallops with Prickly Pear Garnish, Cilantro and Thai Basil
Dakota does a Shrimp Tostada with Watermelon and a Prickly Pear Shooter
Tom then calls over the 4 guys to try the dishes. Tom tells the 3 cheftestants that they all worked the cactus into their dishes very well. Interesting winner!
(Sorry this was so late being finalized - two cats who are going nuts climbing furniture etc. has distracted me way more than I had hoped!)