Top Chef Episode 13: I’ll Seetoh it You’re Eliminated
The remaining four cheftestants are reunited on the other side of the world, where there is a sharp contrast between Edâ€™s devil-may-care attitude and Angeloâ€™s devil-may-have-a-stick-up-his-ass attitude.Â Â Also along for the ride are Kelly, expertly dressed as a tourist, and Kevin, who, by virtue of him being the one Iâ€™m rooting for, is allowed to wear such a stupid looking hat.Â Â Once theyâ€™re all in the same spot, Padma shows up with Singaporeâ€™s own Tony Bourdain, KF Seetoh.Â Â He gives them a tour through one of Singaporeâ€™s hawker food centers, feeding them along the way, until they circle back to a visibly drunker Padma, who introduces the Quickfire: create street food using only a wok.Â And, for the first time in Top Chef history at this late in the game, the winner will get immunity (lazy judges).Â Â Â Angelo tells us heâ€™s going to win because Asian food is his passion.Â Â Ed, on the other hand, is simply focused on â€œkicking Angeloâ€™s ass,â€ potentially adding a couple twists of the insult peppermill to the injury that was Ed sleeping with one of Angeloâ€™s girlfriends back in the day.
CookingÂ Â commences, and itâ€™s apparent that the secret ingredient in all the cheftestantsâ€™ dishes is sweat.Â Â Kevin â€œdoesnâ€™t wok,â€ garnering some surly heckling from the still-even-drunker Padma, but he throws together a nice looking seafood stew with lobster, cuttlefish, and crispy shallots.Â Â Angelo, trying way too hard to both impress guest judge Seetoh and prove that he knows his way around Asian food, attempts a riff on Singaporean chile crab by replacing the crab with frog legs.Â Â Kelly makes Chinese noodles with lobster, cockles, bean sprouts & Chinese broccoli; and Edâ€”the new villain on the blockâ€”makes a copycat dish of stir-fry noodles with lobster, black pepper sauce, & gai lan.Â Â For a non-native English speaker, guest judge Seetoh has a lot to say about all the dishes, but itâ€™s Ed who wins the coveted immunity, keeping the competitionâ€™s status as Angeloâ€™s to lose.
The Elimination Challenge is another team affair.Â Â The cheftestants are tasked with catering a party for Food + Wine magazine, meaning Dana Cowin will once again be at the table along with Tom, Padma, Gail, and Asian Bourdain.Â Â No Ripert this time, probably because heâ€™s been called away to assassinate a high ranking member of the Yakuza.Â Â Back at the hotel room, Ed continues to heckle the rest of the gang, using his immunity to get in everybodyâ€™s head.Â Â The final four decide to each make a single dish for the elimination, but Edâ€™s foresight tells him to make two.Â Â When Tom comes to roost and intimidate in the kitchen during prep, Edâ€™s clairvoyance pays off, so Kevin, Angelo, and Kelly have to scramble to make an additional dish.Â Â As whiny as they were about it, they sorted it out quickly, leaving one final hurdle for service: the waitstaffâ€™s ability to speak or write English.Â Â Even this, however, was surmountable for the cheftestants, who were once again in the zone.Â Â Ed emerges as the clear cut winner with his two dishes, a sweet and sour pork with crispy rice & potato cakes, and a banana fritter with chili paste.Â Â The former is an â€œexplosion of tasteâ€ (I think Iâ€™ve heard that used somewhere before), and the latter, according to Colicchio, was perfect stoner food. Gailâ€™s input was also insightful, blurting out â€œHoly Asian extavaganza, it was so taste delicious!â€Â Â I donâ€™t know what taste delicious means, but her enthusiasm told me she really enjoyed it.Â Â Kevin was not far behind Ed with his perfectly executed congee and 63 degree egg and creatively named clam chowder with flavors of Southeast Asia.Â Â Angelo has some beginnerâ€™s luck with a lamb tartare & curry oil, but his shrimp broth was more sauce than soup.Â Â One out of two was apparently better than what Kelly put together, and her two mediocre dishes were not enough to move on.Â Â She had a great run, but with things being as close as they were and her being forced to cook outside of her comfort zone, she would have lost eventually, just like she did to demi-god Jose Garces on Iron Chef.Â Next week, Ilan, Hung, and a few more Bravo-owned chefs show up to help out, Angelo gets sick, and we wrap up the season.Â Let’s hope Kevin brings home the win.
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