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Thursday, November 18, 2010

It's Yigit! S.F. Pastry Chef Wins Top Chef: Just Desserts

Posted By on Thu, Nov 18, 2010 at 10:41 AM

The Taste Catering pastry chef topped Morgan the dick and Danielle the face contortionist to take it all. - BENJAMIN SETO/COOKING WITH THE SINGLE GUY
  • Benjamin Seto/Cooking with the Single Guy
  • The Taste Catering pastry chef topped Morgan the dick and Danielle the face contortionist to take it all.

The final challenge in last night's Top Chef: Just Desserts finale was to create a progressive four-course dessert tasting. The twist arrived with plates of desserts prepared by three top pastry chefs: Sherry Yard, Elizabeth Falkner, and Claudia Fleming.

They drew cookies from the cookie jar that paired the cheftestants with the pastry chef masters who'd play sous chef for the challenge.

No surprises. Morgan talked down to Claudia like a dick, Danielle's thinking was half-baked (she had Elizabeth shell pistachios), and Yigit was charming as he both baked and danced with Sherry.

On the second day, there was yet another twist, and more cookie-jar picking. The celebrity chefs were gone and the former Just Desserts contestants were cookie-picked to be their sous chefs. Tim, S.F.'s self-described Snow Queen, was Yigit's sous and happy to be on Team S.F. Heather H. reluctantly worked with Morgan, after having vowed not to be on his team ever again.

We're not trying to make the situation all chocolate and vanilla, but Yigit is sweet and makes people happy and Morgan is a jerk. Claudia called Morgan a "typical male pastry chef." Asked if she had Morgan rage she responded, "I do," as if she were taking wedding vows.

Behold what was served to the celebrity chefs, former Just Desserts contestants, and judges:

Yigit's theme: A dance through his palate, a love story

1. Cucumber-lime sorbet with Straus yogurt caviar pearls

2. Strawberry sorbet and lemongrass-ginger ice cream with berry meringue and consommé

3. Muscovado-braised pineapple and coconut cake served with coconut-lime soup with tapioca pearls

4. Hazelnut dacquoise, milk jam, and salted caramel ice cream

Morgan's theme: Light broken down into primary colors

1. Passion fruit cannoli with mango carpaccio, fluid gel, and tarragon jelly

2. Blueberry pavlova with lemon cream in citrus chamomile broth and pearls

3. Manjari soufflé cake with raspberry sorbet and cocoa nib paper

4. White pepper crème brulée, black pepper baumkuchen, and blackberry-anise macaron

Danielle's theme: (No theme, just face contortions and saying that themes are stupid)

1. Hazelnut cake with Spanish goat cheese and fig jam

2. Lemon parfait, pomelo and tangerine sorbet, and moscato granita

3. Baked Alaska, strawberry sundae, and root beer float

4. Chocolate pudding cake with pistachio ice cream

Morgan's soufflé sunk like his Top Chef hopes. Danielle showed a whole new level of sophistication, but too little and too late. And Yigit, the man with the perfect balance of concept and execution, was named the first-ever winner of Top Chef: Just Desserts. What did victory feel like in San Francisco? Check out our moment with Yigit at last night's victory party at Macy's.

Read more from Carina Ost at CarinaOst.com. Follow SFoodie at @sfoodie.

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Carina Ost

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