Padma Lakshmi

Padma Lakshmi speaks candidly about the chef's lack of imagination.

on Jun 27, 2007


Sara M.'s dish did not even resemble Chicken a la King at all. Hung's skinless chicken marinated in yogurt was just OK. Casey's Ribeye Sloppy Joes were delicious but why wouldn't they be? After all, they were made of ribeye, which has the highest fat content. Lia could have made a beautiful Italian sausage with white Cannellini beans instead of the hard lentils she ended up with. Although CJ's dish lacked flavor, the tuile with flaxseeds may have been the best creation of the entire challenge.

Not enough imagination was put into the ideas or there was a great lack of focus, which put the nail in the coffin for Micah, who I was sad to see go, but also was a little relieved, since she had seemed to be struggling so much and had her daughter waiting at home. Howie and Dale were the only ones to play off of the classic dishes by putting a modern spin on them while keeping within the guidelines of the challenge -- to be healthy and low in cholesterol without tasting like boring health-food. In the end, while I thought Howie's dish was superb and I loved the slaw, I thought the effort and skill involved in preparing Dale's dish was at a much higher level.