Team Top Chef's Senior Editor finds Casey's elimination sort of amusing.

Jan 4, 2011

The Quickfire may have seemed tough, but it was apparently a piece of cake compared to the chefs' Elimination Challenge -- dim sum service at Grand Harmony restaurant in Chinatown. I'm embarrassed to admit that I've never done proper dim sum, so this was a fairly enlightening challenge for me. Richard called it pretty early on that the whole thing would be a disaster, and boy was he right. Mike Isabella was expediting because he had immunity, but others needed to help him eventually becuase the diners were getting cranky. Poor Tom even had to enter the kitchen to tell the chefs what was what. There was so much chaos in the kitchen, and the thing that honestly pissed me off was how much kvetching was going on, instead of cooking. This is probably one of my biggest pet peeves when working in groups -- when people complain about mistakes being made before the task is complete. I always say, "Solve now, blame later!" Did I just quote myself? Ew. 

Time to break down the dishes: Not surprisingly, Angelo and Dale were on top. As Dale said, this was his challenge to lose. Tiffany Derry rocked it out with a pork bun. Just looking at the "marshmallow-y" ouside made me want a pork bun immediately. Although David Chang's are "the best," I have always preferred Hung Huynh's. They're a little more pulled pork, a little less pork belly, which means less fat in my mouth. Fabio also rocked it out with short ribs. It seems he finally got out of his own head, stepped out of his comfort zone, and succeeded. He got a nice compliment from Susur Lee, which is nothing to sneeze at.

One more quick note about Fabio: The sight of him walking his pet turtle was adorable. I had the opportunity to try turtle soup at Brennan's in New Orleans, and although I usually try to order exotic items as often as possible, I just couldn't do it. I was hungover hungry, and wanted something I knew I could/would eat. Have any of you ever had turtle soup? If so, what's it like?

Fabio's classic "Top Scallop" line was also revived this episode. Now, I know I'll get a barage of comments that Jamie, once again, should have gone home. She even admitted she thought she would. But Tom used the word "inedible" when referring to Casey's dish. Once he said that, I knew Casey was dead in the water. As soon as Casey got cut, I had visions of a "black widow" montage for Jamie at the reunion, Antonia Season 4-style. She just keeps sending people home! Carla's roll was beautiful, but apprently too noodle-y, and Antonia's shrimp toast was good, but she contributed to the poor long beans, so she found herself in the bottom.