Ruth Reichl

Chris Cosentino and Patricia Yeo's collaboration in the kitchen reminds Ruth Reichl of her own culinary experiences.

on Sep 12, 20120

Watching Chris and Patricia working together in the Quickfire reminded me of the sheer joy of collaboration in the kitchen. In my own kitchen career, there was one person with whom I shared that joyful kitchen ballet; she would use a saute pan, empty it out, and leave it on the burner just as I came up to toss in a glug of olive oil. We were a smooth, well-oiled machine with no wasted motions. Chris and Patricia were working like that, and watching them was pure pleasure. I think Lorena and Kerry got very, very lucky in this challenge. 

But as far as I was concerned, there was no luck involved in the winner of the Elimination Challenge. Chris’ picnic for this Diner en Blanc was so beautiful that when I opened that box and looked inside I became instantly hungry. It was the world in a box -- the sea, the forest, the land -- each bite distinct and delicious, each bite different in flavor and texture from the one that came before. On the show you hear a lot about the fabulous pate and the lovely swordfish conserva, but I wish you could have tasted those marinated mushrooms; they were superb. More than any of the other chefs, Chris understood what would happen to his food as it sat waiting over night and he factored that in, producing a completely perfect picnic.

As for the other chefs; Lorena played it extremely safe. Her papa alla huancaina was delicious, but it’s a completely classic dish. And as she said herself, she serves that crowd-pleasing sweet chicken salad to people in her restaurant. Chocolate mousse? Another play-it-safe way to please a crowd. Pleasant enough, but not food you crave from a Top Chef Master.

5 comments
hellenv712
hellenv712

I somehow don't think that when Patricia said "Help each other out" she was including Lorena in the mix. 

 

Vickis
Vickis

I agree that the quickfire was a fluke.  I find Lorena overwhelmingly unkind and would never vote her fan favorite.  There were so many negative comments about her dishes ..SWEET...TOOTHPAST CONSISTENCY...ECT. I hate it when judges seem to dislike someone's food so much and then eliminate someone who is a better chef, better humanitarian and flat out better person to keep the fiery Lorena for ratings.  I quit watching .  No more.  I can't take it .  Watching Lorena win over and over with poor dishes just upsets me.

 

wynnbeez
wynnbeez

Ruth Reichl.............you should buy a clue because there is no such thing in my book with a desert too sweet. Glad that Lore no Garcia did not get sent home. I think the judges that said her sweet desert was to sweet are insane. I'm a connoisseur of desserts and my mother one year made me for my birthday a homemade (not boxed) chocolate cake very moist with chocolate mocha icing with chocolate fudge drizzle around the edge and her secret chocolate cheese cake ice cream. All made from scratch and that was the best birthday I ever had. I am nuts about sweets; I especially love anything chocolate and classic cheese cake with the fruits that Lorena used in her dessert. There is no such thing as TOO SWEET. The judges were INSANE.

hiphop
hiphop

 @wynnbeez

 It was a jerk chicken salad.  That's not a dessert.

wynnbeez
wynnbeez

I don't think the quickfire was fair. Lorena had her dish and the Kerry sent all the time on his dish and this did give equal time to her dish. Please no more partner challenges...very unfair.