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Top Chef: Just Dessert Recap- Black and White


Another Wednesday, another Top Chef: Just Desserts.  Personally, I’m re-enjoying the fact that I no longer have to give a surname initial when I refer to Heather.  That being said, I’m really hoping that Heather might come off a little nicer this episode; I was a fan a few weeks back.  Those hopes are dashed almost immediately when Heather testifies that she thinks Danielle should go home but hopes Morgan will.  I’m not saying I disagree with any assessment she’s giving here, just that she does it with such a scowl.  You’re never fully dressed without a smile, Heather!

Quickfire challenge!  With Michael Laiskonis as the guest judge!  I again have no idea who this is, and I am again informed that he is extremely intimidating, and the chefs are scared.  I’m more worried for Gail’s stylist, as she’s going to have to deal with an extremely irate phone call from her client when Gail sees herself on television in the dress she’s wearing.  Think Pregnant Dowager Rachel Berry.  Gail, I know, you trusted blindly; I think everyone’s learned a lesson.  Now go fire somebody and tell me all about it over a nice glass of syrah.

The chefs are being asked to create a dessert using savory ingredients; this is technically the Dawn Hand Renewal with Olay Beauty Quickfire, which is special because it manages to reveal nothing of the actual challenge in the title.  Kind of like most online dating profiles.  They must make an interesting, savory dessert using only one pot, which they can re-wash as many times as they like without fearing dishpan hands thanks to Dawn Hand Renewal dish soap.  Oh, NOW the challenge makes sense (no it doesn’t).

Gail leaves the kitchen (hopefully for an outfit change) and the chefs make a mad dash for the vegetables and meats awaiting their ministrations.  Morgan promptly rips some beets out of Zac’s hands and elbows Heather in the face; at first I think, well, I’m sure he didn’t mean to.  He then compares himself to Shaquille O’Neal in the post, and I officially forgive Heather for anything else she says about him because the man’s a moron.  Try to ease up on the others though, Heather.  Turn that frown upside down!  Erika testifies that Team Go Diva is getting on her nerves, and I’m forced to agree with her; in related news, Erika rocks.  In a quickfire in which I would really rather not try any of the desserts, Zac wins the immunity.  Then Gail offers him $1,000 to buy his immunity; Zac hems and haws and asks for a higher offer.  Gail then poker-faces him right out of his prize for $5,000, and Zac testifies that as soon as he takes the cash he regrets it.

Elimination challenge!  The chefs have to cater the LA Times 128th Anniversary Black and White Party with black and white desserts.  The chefs are concerned about the limitations of color except for Eric, who feels like he has an advantage because he’s comfortable with black and white foods; he then immediately crashes and burns when he attempts to make a Mississippi mud pie.  Adam Lambert walks in!  Oh, wait, no that ‘s Johnny Iuzzini; he dings Erika and Heather for possibly not following the color schemes closely enough.  All the sturm und drang about the color feels a little over the top; Gail didn’t tell them that they had to use blush and bashful (name the reference!).

It’s showtime, and we’ve reached the party with a minimum of fuss.  Heather seems to have lost a tray of white chocolate rice krispy treats, and she immediately points the finger at Morgan.  However, since she appears to have no evidence whatsoever, and her dislike of him is well-documented it’s hard to give her much credit here.  Seriously, what is wrong with the crew over on Top Chef?  First there’s Pea Puree-gate from the DC edition, now this…why is no one filming the food?  Anyway, the judges enter and I’m happy to report that Gail is back to her stylish self.  Almost no one gets off unscathed from the judges, except for Eric who gets props from Gail for bringing up his plating technique.

Judge’s table!  If I have a complaint about TC: JD thus far is that there hasn’t been a judging smack-down yet.  Well, Erika, Heather and Danielle get called in to see the judges and KA-BOOM!  They flipped the script and brought the bottom three chefs in first just to screw with them.  And they’re getting blunt!  Heather is color-blind and foolishly stubborn.  Erika’s ice cream tasted like soap and her blackberry flavor was non-existent.  Danielle is copping out and sacrificing flavor for her creativity.  Good times.

The men are in the stew room bewildered and sent in to the Judge’s by the women, who don’t bother to tell them that they’re in the top, a delicious bit of mean girl attitude that I wonder if the producers instructed them on.  The judges heap praise upon the four men, which seems a little odd as they weren’t so taken with all of them during the tasting.  Yigit wins the elimination challenge, and he’s adorably happy about it.  But then, Yigit is just generally adorable, so that’s a no-brainer.

It’s time for the axe, and if Danielle isn’t the one going home I don’t know what’s going on anymore.  And it’s Erika!!  What??  I will not pretend to be happy about this.  I guess I should have guessed it, given her lack of overall screen time and generally mature demeanor, but I still feel cheated.

And some icing on the cake:

– I was really disturbed by the number of times chefs were complimented for bringing out the “beet flavor” during the quickfire, and I like beets.  Just not for dessert.

– I’m so with Danielle on the whole “mayonnaise is disgusting” thing.  Blech.

– Morgan clearly dislikes Zac’s…shall we say flamboyance?  Yet Zac appears to be largely going about his life, with Morgan complaining about him behind his back.  At least Heather has the stones to hate on someone directly to their face before she dogs them in testimonials.

– I’m just thinking…Padma or Tom eventually has to guest judge on this show, right?

– Next week, Top Chef: Just Desserts Restaurant Wars!  I want to go to there!