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Thursday, August 25, 2011

Top Chef: Just Desserts Season Two -- New Fairies and Vicious Tales

Posted By on Thu, Aug 25, 2011 at 1:10 PM


We have been so accustomed to the endless cycle of Top Chef that when the last finale night didn't butt up against the premiere of a new season, we were taken aback. Despite being well versed on the fact that Chef Rocco is rumored to have "a perfect penis" we couldn't endure even a second of Rocco's Dinner Party.

Give us Top Chef on Wednesdays or give us death.

Thankfully, Top Chef: Just Desserts is back to sweeten up our hump day primetime. Last season brought us a new crush and a San Francisco winner, Yigit Pura, so our hopes are high.


The intro had this phrase, "It's not just cupcakes and lollipops." Trust us, we remember last season with the sugar highs and lows and the "Red Hots are for my mommy" freak-out.

Last night's season two premiere began with a quick intro of the pastry chefs, and then host Gail Simmons explained the Quickfire: create a modern soda fountain treat.

We saw Cap'n Crunch shakes and learned our new favorite acronym, NFG: non-functional garnish. The winners were Amanda Rockman and her partner Nelson Paz, who both earned immunity. Amanda claimed that her last duty before she left her job for the show was pickling 10 pounds of cherries. She said no matter what her partner wanted, those cherries would be highlighted in their dish of chocolate sponge cake with pickled cherries and pistachios.

Nelson makes an edible flower
  • Nelson makes an edible flower

For the Elimination Challenge, teams were chosen by picking a fairytale book and the two winners got to choose any team to be on: Hansel and Gretel, Jack and the Beanstalk, Goldilocks and the Three Bears, or Little Red Riding Hood. Nelson stole our heart when he explained that he was originally from Argentina and had no idea what they were talking about or even what a fairytale is. Oh, honey, grab your warm milk and cookies and sit on our lap, we'll explain.

The challenge was to create a fairytale showpiece and two plated desserts for a fantasy costume gala.

The Goldilocks team wanted to make rice pudding and call it porridge but Orlando Santos was mortified: "That is a dessert that you make old people, because they can't chew."

In the building of the showpieces the inevitable happened, and a cheftestant remarked that the sound of sugar breaking is the sound of all hopes and dreams being destroyed.

The winning entry
  • The winning entry

The winning team was Little Red Riding Hood with its architectural showpiece, rose-scented bomboloni, coconut tapioca, and red berry gelee, and lastly blackout sponge cake, cocoa nib nougatine, poached cherries and micro basil. This team was so sophisticated that they went with the floral scent because apparently Little Red was picking flowers before she encountered the Big Bad Wolf.

For the losers there was a lot of throwing under the brioche at Judge's Table and, in the end, it was Lina, who didn't think to make a gingerbread house for Hansel and Gretel -- come on, how obvious was that? -- who was sent home. The old witch of the forest would have approved.

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Carina Ost


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