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It was a double dose of meanness and ruthlessness from top chef and mega food star himself chef Gordon Ramsay on two of his FOX cooking competition shows when he surprised viewers and contestants alike.
GORDON RAMSAY’S FOOD STARS “As Seen on TV”:
“The most stressful 20 minutes of my life.” – Chris
The contestants on “Gordon Ramsay’s Food Stars” had a live QVC challenge this week where they were judged by QVC executives during a staged “live” demonstration of various kitchen products. Mentor and host Gordon Ramsay decided to make the teams men vs. women. What the teams didn’t know was that they didn’t really go live to millions of TV viewers; their mishaps were only seen by the QVC executives, who were picking every little part of the presentation apart and evaluating it.
Each team had in their corner Gordon Ramsay, who was frustratingly cuing them at the proper moments in his attempts to not completely embarrass himself by each teams’ shortcomings. The goal was for the contestants to test their sales skills and demonstrate how well they connect with an audience. The teams were also tested with fake callers (really, the executives) to fumble answers to product questions.
The women’s team, or Yellow Team, was made up of Caroline, Ashley, and Lan. On the men’s team, or Red Team, were Tony, Chris, and the youngest player, Aaron. The teams had to assign two hosts and one producer. The Yellow team had Caroline and Ashley as hosts, with Lan producing. The Red’s on-camera hosts were Tony and Chris, with Aaron producing.
Both Teams had 20 minutes to show off five products. Tony was too self-aware of being on camera and delayed replacing his fallen-out earpiece until he was hoping to be off-camera. Along with that, Tony really lacked in showing off his Chef expertise by mixing ingredients that were flawed and bad tasting.
The women mostly came out of the assignment leaving a better taste in the mouths of executives than the Red team. On the men’s side of things, it was a complete disaster. It was so bad that Ramsay abandoned his onsite post to be in the control room to whisper commands to Chris and Tony during their demo. On the women’s team, Lan was praised by the QVC executives for doing a good job with her behind-the-scenes production skills. Aaron was criticized for his derailed production.
Ramsay called it his “most intense” challenge yet. He revealed to both teams that it was a panel of QVC executives that they were pitching to, not a live audience. The winners were the women, the Yellow Team. The men’s team was the one called into the restaurant to defend their actions to Gordon Ramsay and stay in the “Food Stars” competition in hopes of winning the $250,000 investment from Ramsay.
At the end of the episode, Gordon expressed his disappointment at Tony, who was the very last chef left in the game, and eliminated him. “I will not be investing in you.” Then, oh wait, he wasn’t done! Because Gordon Ramsay also held Aaron responsible for having a big part in the team’s failed assignment, he sent him home as well. “Sorry, young man, but you are not ready. We’re done.” Ramsay smoothed over the harsh rejections by praising each contestant’s real-world achievements. The final four contestants remained.
MASTER CHEF “Birds of a Feather”:
“Choose your butcher very carefully.” – Chef Joe Bastianich
On the other side of the spectrum, “Master Chef” had a whole chicken challenge where regions had to split up one raw chicken to create an impressive dish for the judges. Last week’s winner, Jennifer, from the South, had the task of choosing which team would be disadvantaged by having a ten-minute delayed start. Well, one would think that she would have selected the region of only three players, which would have been the Northeast. But, nope, she chose the very region that helped her win last week’s challenge. That was the Midwest, and boy were they peeved about it!
The winner with the most impressive dish was Kennedy from the West with her Crispy Chicken Thigh, which won the “Master Chef” immunity pin. That meant that her region was also safe from elimination. It was a blessing for Lizzie, who, as described by Ramsay, made the “worst dish” in her region, a Spicy Chicken breast dish.
A major standout in this challenge was actually Kendal’s BBQ Sauce that he made for his BBQ chicken dish. It was so good that Gordon Ramsay requested a bottle of sauce to take home. Judge Joe told Kendal that making sauce was something that the judges “don’t have mastery of.”
Brynn, from the Northeast, unsuccessfully tried to negotiate Purvi over the thighs but lost out. As karma would have it, Brynn had one of the top dishes of the night. Gordon made it known that Brynn not having thighs in her dish was a big hindrance to her chicken cacciatore. Aside from that, her dish was praised by the judges.
With more karma out to get her, Purvi was placed in the bottom three for having made a Butter Chicken that Gordon was initially super excited about until he saw and tasted it. The other two in the bottom three were Jennifer and Sarah. Jennifer took on the very difficult side of risotto with her chicken.
First, let’s take a moment to admire how these master chefs can deduce which dishes are at the top and which ones are at the bottom by just looking at them!
Sarah was part of the region that had the delayed start time, which cost her in the end. She chose to make chicken roulade, which the judges didn’t understand. Not only was it her first time making the dish, but it was a dish where, as they stated, “resting time is just as significant and important as the cooking time.” It was a “double jeopardy” situation, and what resulted was a dry chicken breast. Master Chef judge Joe said it reminded him of a chain restaurant chicken.
Sarah was eliminated, and after Ramsay told her that she could thank Jennifer for that, he blasted another dish for being equally bad. That dish belonged to Purvi, who was also sent home. Gordon told Jennifer that she “dodged a bullet.” Jennifer then proceeded to cry and hug Sarah, whom she basically backstabbed, and told her that she loved her so much and that she was “so sorry.”
NEXT EPISODE: “Master Chef” will celebrate its 250th episode with the United Cakes of America challenge. Kennedy will get to choose which contestant will bake which cake. “Gordon Ramsay’s Food Stars” final four contestants will be put through a Las Vegas challenge starring Wayne Newton.