'Top Chef' recap: Buy me some peanuts and...tuna tartare?

top-chef-0728-320.jpg top-chef-0728-320.jpgQuickfire Challenge: Rick Moonen judges as the "Top Chef" cheftestants have to create a dish based on a food idiom. Rick doesn't love Kelly's combination of Brussels sprouts and grapes, and he thinks Amanda's macaroni and cheese is too heavy. His top choices are Kevin's bacon three ways and Ed's potato gnocchi. The ultimate winner is Ed, possibly because his dish could actually be frozen and Kevin's kind of couldn't.

Elimination Challenge: Create fine dining versions of baseball park food. They have to work as a team, but create six dishes, so why are they a team again? Oh, to cause drama. They realize the night before the ball game that they're going to be serving at a concession stand, so they will need to take orders. Angelo offers to fill that role, but then when they get to the site, he realizes that if he's taking orders, he can't create his own dish, and he doesn't trust anyone to do it for him. He tries to back out, and Kevin yells at him. No one will take over his role, so he's forced back into it while Ed preps his food for him. When the guests arrive, they all want Tiffany and Kelly's food, so does that mean their dishes are the best?

Here are the dishes:

Kelly: Open-faced crab cake BLT with sweet potato fries. The judges like the flavor, but think the crab cake is a little too salty.

Tiffany: Italian meatball sub with fennel, basil pesto, and fresh mozzarella. The judges think it tastes great, but it's a little messy.

Amanda: Yellowfin tuna tartare with fennel, Meyer lemon and fava bean puree. Amanda preps the tuna too early and it turns gray, and the judges notice. Also, what kind of baseball park food is tuna?

Angelo: sweet glazed pork on a lobster roll with sweet sesame pickles. He claims it's a lobster roll but it's really a hot dog roll, and the judges think that the bread overwhelms the pork.

Kevin: chicken kebab with Romesco sauce, shoestring fries, and smoked paprika aoli. The guests and judges seem to have more to say about the lame presentation than the flavors.

Ed: shrimp and corn risotto fritters with jalapeno aoli. The judges have only good things to say about the flavors and textures.

The entire group gets called in for Judges' Table. Angelo tries to gloss over the kerfuffle over the order-taking, but Tiffany doesn't let him get away with that. The judges don't seem to care. They single out Ed and Tiffany's dishes as the best, and the winner is Ed! Damn, this season really keeps mixing it up. Just when you think you can count someone out because they haven't won any challenges in a while, they make a comeback.

The remaining four are the bottom. The judges take Amanda to task for her gray tuna, and they think it was awkward to eat Kevin's skewers. There are compliments for Kelly's food, but the judges had some suggestions for making the texture better. And they think Angelo had way too much bread, and his dish was too sweet. It's really obvious that Amanda's going to be eliminated since her dish kind of sucked all around, from conception to execution, while everyone else just had minor problems. And Amanda is, in fact, eliminated. Finally.

Watch a clip from the episode below, discuss it in our forums, then see where past cheftestants are now!



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