Richard Blais

Richard Blais takes a page from Brian Malarkey's blog and handicaps the chef'testants.

on Nov 21, 20080

Shopping also reveals a lot about this group.

Hosea blames the ingredient. I have him pegged for a long run, but this doesn't bode well for him. If you know exactly what you are going to do before you get to the market and can't improv once there, you are in for a few trips to the bottom. I can also tell you that unless these guys are heading to the Fulton Street Fish Market or Le Bernardin, which they may, seafood is a roll of the dice at a normal supermarket. Not always, but you need to be flexible.

OK. Let's talk about the Ostrich egg. I don't know who goes home as I write this. I'm not on that PPX list, but I loved the call here. Inspiration to me is when a chef sees an ingredient that they haven't worked with, appreciates the pressure of the moment, and goes for it anyway. I didn't care for Jill's hot dog, or the Rasta scallops last week, but I'd work with her based on grabbing that egg alone. She has giant huevos, literally. Quiche though? I immediately thought egg drop soup ladled from the shell itself.

Back at the dorms (I always felt that's what they were) there's a romance brewing. It's gonna happen folks, so get ready. All rules are off! The question is will it be Hosea and Leah, or Stefan and Fabio who hook up first?

Off to Craft at what everyone in TV land should know was probably 5 AM!

The mise en place is going well. Tom's in his blue apron. That means business folks. This is like a marine in fatigues and camouflage face paint.

The audience is comprised of applicants who haven't made it on the show. Some of them are goobers. Some show a sense of respect. I personally loved the guy who said, "I coulda done way better den dis." Perhaps.

The judges unleash a barrage of comments that are usually left for much later rounds. Slimy, like glue, eighties, and this is an after school snack (my personal favorite) are some of the comments. But none compare to Padma violently spitting up her lemon meringue. This was a Tony Bourdain/Gordon Ramsay moment.