Ted Allen

Ted Allen talks comfort food.

on Jun 29, 2007

ted_303_01_320x240.jpg

Oh, Micah. Last week, we get Sara's admission that she had no idea Scotch Bonnets (a.k.a. habaneros) are the hottest peppers on the shelf -- something any amateur cook knows, let alone a professional. Now Micah reveals a lack of understanding of meatloaf -- a humble dish, but one with an important history. No, really!
ted_303_02_320x240.jpg

My friends, meatloaf is Elvis! Meatloaf is ingenuity and spirit, the American housewife's answer to scarcity in times of war and poverty! Meatloaf is the culinary expression of Rosie-the-Riveter's determination -- she of the WWII posters with the woman holding a wrench, headlined, "We can do it!" Meatloaf is America! There is honor in meatloaf! At least, without the baked-on ketchup.
padma_303_03_320x240jpg

Yeah, I know Micah's from South Africa, but she's cooking in Florida, now. And failing to have a least some familiarity with our great nation's comfort-food classics is to come up short in your culinary literacy. Also, if Micah knew nothing about the dish, why did she choose it? (As an aside, I'm not even a chef, and I have a recipe for a meatloaf made with beef and pork, with a mushroom and walnut sauce, that is absolutely delicious. You're too thin! Here: try it yourself!) So meatloaf was Micah's undoing, as we all now know. It's for the best: it was pretty clear that she was having trouble with the competition -- hey, not every great chef is great under these conditions -- plus, she missed her young child. "I think I'm better off getting out of here now before it gets ugly," she opined -- and, indeed, the gloves are really starting to come off among the contestants.