If you can remember back that far, last week we saw all of the cheftestants get spanked at the judges’ table. Nobody met Padmama and Tomdaddy’s standards. It was a craptastic mess. All the kiddos were shamed. Everyone was pretty glum.
Round 1: The Quickfire Challenge
Padma comes out with my homegurl, Marilyn Hagerty, who is cute as a button on TV. (At this point, I screeched so loudly that my dad, over in the next room, came rushing out and asked, “Are you okay????”) Yes, I’m okay. I just nearly fainted. I have had a girlcrush (correction: elderly lady crush) on Hagerty ever since she wrote a glowing review of Olive Garden. ”Somebody told me I became viral,” says Hagerty. “I didn’t even know what that meant… It’s just been a hoot. The whole thing.”
How can you not love this wonderful woman?
The chefs have to make a sweet and savory holiday dish based on their family lineages. We find out there are a lot of adopted babies in this crowd, which I think says a lot of good things about the state of America’s families, dontchuthink? There’s just one problem: only Lizzie gets a knife. Nobody else has one. We see the chefs get pretty creative with whatever they have, using spatulas and the bottom of wine bottles to cut and smash ingredients. Bart the Knight makes Belgium waffles (duh), Eliza makes hushpuppies (snooze), Micah and Josie make tamales (“She called my tamale a ‘taco,’ says Micah. Then he does a facepalm), and Sheldon does a banana lumpia (fancy). Of course, it’s Hagerty judging, though, so her favorite is going to be the most home-y dish out of the bunch: Brooke’s cheddar cheese on apple pie. This about as American as it gets, folks.
Brooke wins immunity. Rah rah rah.
Round 2: The Elimination Round
Actress Anna Faris and hubby Chris Pratt are having a baby together, and they’re throwing a party for their friends and family at Chihuly Garden and Glass. The chefs have to come up with a menu that fits the couple’s adventurous taste buds. Everyone is scrambling to get everything ready. We see the cheftestants run into the kitchen the night before to prep. John Tesar – our precious, precious little Dallas man – runs into the glass doors. With. His. Glasses. On.
Kristen starts getting to work on pasta with cheese and dried apricots, Eliza makes elk that’ll turn out to be too chewy, and Josh tries to prove, once again, that he’s good with pork. (He’s not.) Tesar goes for clam chowder.
At the party, Tesar has a massive freak out moment because the Ultimate Clam Chowder Maker is the guest judge for this episode. Rick Moonen, his former employer, is standing in front of JT. “There’s no room for error here,” says Tesar. Nope. Moomen taught him how to make clam chowder. Moomen is the boss of clam chowders. Tesar better bring it.
And he does, of course. Moonen smacks his lips and says, “It’s a hug from the ocean. It’s money.”
At the judging table, Tesar, Kristen, Sheldon, and Brooke are called in for the best dishes of the night. Brooke wins the keys to a Toyota Prius C for her lamb-stuffed squid. We should probably just stop here and call this episode “Brooke Wins Everything.”
Unfortunately, the judges were not happy with Danyele, Eliza, Micah, and Josh. Danyele is on the verge of tears, but she holds them back like the tough girl she is. “It’s very stressful,” she says. “I don’t think I’m necessarily doing well in this circumstance.” She cooked her meat way too tough. Lucky for her, though, Eliza gets shooed off the show. Eliza is a good person. I’m sad to see her go.
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