Eric Ripert

Eric Ripert explains why he thinks Jamie should go home.

on Dec 21, 2010

I am Eric Ripert, chef of Le Bernardin New York City commenting on episode four of Top Chef New York All-Stars.

So they in this episode, they have to create a stuffing, and I have my own favorite stuffing. And I would have loved to be in that challenge and compete with them and make the stuffing of Grandma. I don’t know if I would have found the ingredients because it’s a very expensive stuffing that my grandmother was making only once a year, either way for New Year’s Eve or for Christmas. But yeah, inside it had some foie gras, some black truffles, some porcini mushroom. So I think I would have had a hard time to find those ingredients but I would have definitely tried to find ingredients that can bring more or less the same flavors in the stuffing.

Definitely challenging to do a stuffing with absolutely no kitchen tools, and I’m very impressed with their creativity. They are basically using everything they can possibly use in that kitchen that is not necessarily a kitchen tool to grate cheese, to slice, chop, cut. It’s very interesting to see how fast they can evolve in the challenge and how fast they can create that stuffing, basically with bare hands and not using their teeth.

I like Marcel’s stuffing a lot. I also like the fact that he stuffed the squab. I always like to stuff the bird when I do the stuffing. I think it brings flavor to the bird and some moisture, and also the bird and the juice of the bird comes into the stuffing and it’s an osmosis of flavors which is very successful. It looks great, so I thought maybe Marcel was going to win that contest.

However, Tre came up with a Southwestern-influenced stuffing, spicy but supposedly very exciting in terms of flavor and seasoning. And Tre won the challenge and he’s actually in good shape because he has immunity for the next step, which is the elimination challenge.

So Carla tried to do stuffing with quinoa, and she doesn’t have time to cook the quinoa, and therefore she’s basically serving raw grain to the judge. That’s not obviously what she’s supposed to do, and she’s in the bottom. But I like her spirit. She has a lot of humor. She knows, she knows she clearly lost. She’s laughing about it, and she’s moving no matter what to the next challenge.